Shelley is the VP of Quality at ALICE, working remotely from Texas. Shelley has worked at ALICE for almost two years, and throughout her time here, she has greatly contributed to the success and growth of the Quality team, as well as the ALICE product.
ALICE’s People team sat down with Shelley to chat with her about what it’s like working with the Quality team at ALICE.
What is your favorite part about working at ALICE?
What I enjoy most at ALICE is the people. Before arriving at ALICE I had worked in many different places, but this is the first company where I never think “Oh, I have to work with that person.” I think we are a very smart group of people, all pushing in the same direction to achieve a common goal, and that is not the case at all companies.
What initially attracted you to ALICE?
Initially, what attracted me to ALICE was the size of the company. When I joined in 2018, ALICE was far enough along in its life that it was clear what they were trying to achieve. It was not a baby startup, but it was also not a huge company where it can be hard to see how your work has meaning. Once I joined the ALICE team and started talking to the people here, I discovered that I really liked the culture at ALICE, and that I could still learn a lot.
What has been one of your most memorable moments at ALICE?
Early in my ALICE career, I was asked to present at my first town hall. Dmitry wanted me to introduce the Scrum framework to the company, as we were preparing to transition the Engineering team into an agile team. I was putting together my slides about what “agile” is and why it is good and I thought, “oh my god, I am boring myself!”
I thought about how I could make this topic more interesting to other people, especially non-technological people. I decided to make it a story instead of a presentation, and that is how “Story Time with Shelley” was born. Since then, I have done three or four “Story Time” presentations. I would have never had the confidence to do this at any other company, but I feel safe putting myself out there at ALICE.
"Story Time with Shelley" at our 2019 Town Hall
What has been your favorite project at ALICE?
What I have enjoyed most is working on Level 2 support cases that turn into PSE issues or fires (urgent things for customers). There are two main reasons that I enjoy them. The first is that each case is something different, and I enjoy the variety. Dealing with fires and PSE issues helps me learn more about our product. The second reason is that it is great to be helping with something that a client needs badly. I feel valued because the urgency is there and I am able to fix the problem quickly. One thing that I am driven by is finishing a job, and with this specific job, I am able to work throughout the life cycle of a project in a short amount of time.
Do you have any upcoming projects that you are excited about?
Right now what I am most excited about is that I finally have enough time to start writing and blogging about what I’ve been doing. I published my first blog post about two weeks ago. It was a silly post about the five ways to tell if you’re turning into a “Zoombie.”
I have a whole list of blog topics, some more serious than others. I am looking forward to writing them. Having time to write and share with the larger tech community is something that I am really excited to do.
Do you have any plans to travel once travel opens up?
I’ve had five cruises cancelled so far this year! I have nine more booked for future dates so hopefully one of them ends up working out.
What is an interesting fact about you that people may not know?
When I was a baby my dad picked up a snake outside and put it on my belly, then I bit it in half! Another fact people may not know is that I am actually very introverted. Most people don’t know this because I do a pretty good job of hiding it and tend to come off as an extrovert.
Do you have any career advice?
Don’t stop looking for opportunities to learn and do something different, even if they aren’t necessarily in your plan. When I graduated college I had a degree in physics and no idea what I wanted to do with my life. If you had asked me then if I would end up in quality I would have said I don’t think so. My career has been one opportunity after another that I have just said yes to.
Don’t be afraid to say yes to things, you may end up somewhere entirely different than you expected, and the journey sometimes winds up being more important than the destination.