Culture

Holy moly, one year already?!

By | | 4 min read


Summary
Hello! My name is Kamlesh Shah, and I am a seasoned technologist with extensive experience in various network technologies, cloud, and application performance monitoring systems. Here’s my story about my first year at AppDynamics.

I can’t believe it’s already been one year into my journey with AppDynamics. This has been one of the best transitions in my career of more than 25 years, and I feel like it just started yesterday. For me, it all began back in January 2017, when Cisco announced their intent to acquire AppDynamics. Although the deal closed a few months later, I had already been down the path of exploring my opportunities and educating myself in the exciting world of application performance monitoring (APM) as a means to bridge my career to an increasingly app-centric world.

I was lucky enough to come across a regional sales team in the Carolinas who quickly got me in touch with a sales leader at AppDynamics. They were looking for people with experience in cloud and service providers to be part of an exciting new team. With my deep technical and customer-facing expertise in various related areas, I was keen on rolling up my sleeves to dabble in the world of APM.

As I found out, AppDynamics has a very comprehensive approach to interviews and hiring. I was tested not only on my professional experience, ability to learn, and deep technical expertise (both theory and hands-on skills), but also on my ability to handle high-pressure situations in front of customers. I was fortunate enough to pass through these gates and accepted an offer to transition from Cisco to AppDynamics. It wasn’t always a walk in the park, but I must say that at each point throughout the process I felt entirely welcomed and supported by the interview teams.

Once I joined, I realized for the first time how detailed and methodical this place is. In the first few days, I had a one-on-one call with an onboarding coordinator to help me set goals to hit for my first 30, 60, and 90 days in terms of learning, using tools like MindTickle. The IT team was always very responsive to my needs, just a Slack message away. Then there was the boot camp I needed to schedule, part of the process for my first 30 days.

Having been given some prior information via the sales engineer buddy program, I went into the boot camp with a combination of apprehension and a knot in my stomach, thinking this was going to be impossible for me to handle. The program, although very comprehensive and demanding with a lot of work to be done, was made easier by the onboarding team, who were there to welcome us and to make us feel at home from day one. Everyone was extremely knowledgeable, including the invited guests. The activities got us all involved right away, making the week go by fast. We did roleplaying, team and individual exercises, and even had time for a group outing — it was fun!

The best part of being at AppD by then was that I knew a lot of people and co-workers who I could reach out to, not only in person, but also online through a variety of means. My colleagues from across the globe were always on a Slack channel ready to help me resolve a tricky situation or question.

The online, self-service modules for my 60 and 90-day marks — plus my certification process — involved a lot of hands-on work, but it was quite enjoyable and I learned a lot. As the year progressed, I had the opportunity to meet and work with many individuals and leaders who had tons of experience in the world of APM and its related technologies. They were always eager to help a fellow co-worker. The local, regional, and company-wide events, both online as well as in-person, offered plenty of opportunities to learn and exchange ideas.

By the time I reached six months with the company, we were well on our way as a team to be a cohesive group that I feel privileged to be part of. Our team dynamics and ability to reach out to other regional groups as we support our global SP partners make me proud to be part of this great phenomenon. We’re helping our partners build world-class solutions using the best people and products. I’m thrilled to be part of this team!

As I write this, I’ve come to realize what a wonderful ride this past year has been. I’ve learned a lot, contributed a lot, and feel that being part of this exciting organization has given me the necessary boost for moving into the exciting world of applications, where things are moving fast and in a big way. By furthering my skills, I feel ready to solve even bigger challenges for the best possible business outcomes. Best of all, I love the fact that this is happening within Cisco, a place I have called home for a huge portion of my career.