I’ve been asked to describe my “typical work day” a number of times since I started working as a Software Engineer and I always find it funny. Hardly anyone who asks this question would care to sit through what I would consider an actual, honest, in-depth answer. Unfortunately for you, reader, the powers that be just gave this engineer a green light and a text editor. Buckle up, folks!
I’ve never been able to give a description of my work that really communicates why I enjoy it so much. Today, I’ll try to settle for an honest attempt at what it’s like to work at Myriad Mobile. This is the perspective of an engineer, so forgive me if I forget to mention some of the other bits that also keep us afloat. I know I’ve missed teammates whose work I can’t describe, and for them I am especially thankful. They let me stay in my nice little box, making my nice little machines go beep-boop.
At Myriad Mobile we solve challenges. We focus on and take pride in solving, particularly, mobile software problems. As an engineer, I don’t think people who solve problems for a living have “typical days.” We live and breathe on the spectrum of either fixing something or building something. And it’s pretty darn fun.
Obviously, Myriad is a technology company. Tech companies, in general, are spoiled in terms of workspaces — and you’ll find nothing lacking here. We have foosball, ample sources of caffeine, and a sweet selection of craft beer in the fridge.
We are currently experiencing what I would call ‘blessings of growth.’ My colleagues should recognize that as a backhanded compliment. One of our focuses right now is on growing and building something great that we can all take pride in. We’ve set ambitious goals and (incredibly) are on track to achieve them. This has its problems — our offices are bursting at the seams. Thankfully, we’re soon moving to an office that fits our size and culture. Myriad Mobile will soon raise its flag in the heart of downtown Fargo. This will allow us to better serve our national markets too.
And from our space downtown, we will breathe deep the awesome that is Fargo. You’ll see our engineers at NSFargo, FMDevelopers, and Mobile Meetup Fargo. You’ll see our designers tearing it up at Cropped via DSGNX Fargo. You’ll see a member of every single team at 1 Million Cups Fargo, and you’ll see us all again at Startup Weekend Fargo. And you’ll probably see a few of us at our flagship event, Midwest Mobile Summit, too. We love Fargo, and we can’t wait to see what it becomes. But more importantly, we can’t wait to help it become an even better place to live, work, and play.
Engineering rooms alternate between the animated hum of geeks being geeks and the barely audible sound of keyboards click-clacking software to life. One minute we’re daydreaming out loud about what we could do with the new version of our OS, with iBeacons, with a smart watch, or with that new Wi-Fi light switch. Two minutes later we’re heads down, headsets on, cranking out code again. The industry-accepted buzz word describing our current office would be “fast-paced”; I prefer “frantic” myself. On a given day you’ll see client meetings, engineers whiteboarding, or an odd discussion about whether LoL or DOTA is the one true MOBA. You’ll hear an occasional smack in the distance — a foosball being knocked against the side of the table at a million miles per hour.
A room of designers are fiddling and tweaking until things look and feel just so; until this feels like Android, until that looks like iOS. They will sit down a lucky engineer, showing them exactly how they want their next project to snap, crackle, and pop.
Mobile strategists toil to translate a client’s vision into software, agonizing over little details until an idea finally fits into a nice little box that designers give detail to and engineers make functional.
In the midst of all that, project managers work tirelessly to bring order to chaos, to keep all of us sane, yet busy. They constantly communicate across teams and with clients to solve problems before the rest of us even realize they exist.
Our CEO walks through rooms high-fiving teammates who just released another project, thanking another for staying late and fixing that bug, ooh-ing and aah-ing at the design team’s latest creation. He stops at the door, distracting everyone to say “Keep up the awesome work, guys.” You shake your head as he leaves, noticing he’s not wearing shoes again.
Myriad is a team of talented people who are passionate about mobile technology. Every one of us a problem solver. It’s really that simple. It takes all kinds to build a software company, and we’ve got all kinds — electrical engineers, computer science junkies, art school kids, and even some psychology majors.
We’re a software company in name, but we’re building much more than that. We’re building a team. We’re building a community. Occasionally, we build a bit of software, and we’re having a heck of a lot of fun doing it. If you can solve problems while maintaining a positive attitude and encouraging other to persevere, then we’ve got a spot for you.
When not engineering mobile software solutions at Myriad Mobile, Brandon Kobilansky can be found planning Mobile Meetup Fargo, playing kickball, and encouraging other software engineers to take a deep dive into code and make magic out of 1’s and 0’s.