4 years on Automattic

On this day, 4 years ago, I started full time with Automattic. This is my 4th Automattiversary.

I had already been on trial for 5 months by that point (since January), and had a good feel for the company and the other Automatticians. I knew it was where I wanted to be. So I accepted the offer, and became a fully-fledged member of a relatively small team (I was employee number 35) that was bringing blogging to the people (amongst other things).

In the four years since then, a lot has happened and changed.

One of the most obvious things is that the company went from this (taken at my first full-company meetup, in Quebec, Canada)…

Automattic in Quebec

…to this (most recent full-company meetup in San Diego, California, although we’re significantly bigger already, I think 160-something people):

Automattic in San Diego

But so much more has happened. Let’s see:

  • We went from a completely flat company structure to a new team-based arrangement to help us cope with growing, and being completely distributed. Each team operates like a small company of its own (with design/development etc), and then there are a few teams that do cross-product things like Happiness, Operations and Systems.
  • I went from working almost exclusively on IntenseDebate, to working extensively on Gravatar, to working on a variety of “social” features for WordPress.com, to now leading the development of our internal communications platform.
  • We had, and then lost (long story) a beautiful office space on Pier 38 in San Francisco
  • I have travelled. A lot. By my count: Los Angeles (3 times), Manila, Washington D.C., Quebec, Sunnyvale, New York (twice), Jakarta, Austin (three times), Portland (twice), Savannah, Seaside, Athens, Minneapolis, Orange County, Seattle, Lisbon, Budapest, Kailua, Napa, Boston, San Diego (twice), Berlin, New Orleans, Las Vegas, Columbia, and Akron/Canton. Phew!
  • On top of that, I made the most of the fact that we can work from anywhere in the world and spent 45 days in South America (Santiago, Chile mostly, and a few days in Buenos Aires for good measure), around 45 days in Australia (South Western Australia, Perth and Sydney), and then relocated from San Francisco to Brooklyn, New York.
  • Now we have a new, amazing (huge) space in San Francisco, which I’ll finally get to see in a few days when I’m back in the Bay Area again.
  • I am now the only remaining original member of Team Social (one left Automattic and is now writing a book about us, the others have switched to different teams/roles), and am now the Team Lead.
  • I’ve spoken at a bunch of WordCamps, some WordPress Meetups and our VIP Workshop.
  • We’ve continued to hire an amazing group of people from all over the world, while only a few have chose to leave the company.
  • VaultPress came into existence, and has redefined what security and backups mean for WordPress sites. We also acquired a related company.
  • Speaking of acquisitions, we also acquired Simperium, and their main product Simplenote.

I’m sure there’s so much more, but it’s hard to keep up with all the things going on these days. I hadn’t even realized until just now, but this is also the longest I’ve ever worked at one company; even though in some ways it feels like I’ve worked for a few different ones because I’ve done such different things along the way.

Here’s to at least another 4 years with the best company, made up of the best people, that I’ve ever worked with.

Me skydiving in San Diego, during a work trip :)

Me skydiving in San Diego, during a work trip ๐Ÿ™‚

  1. The WordPress Weekend Roundup - WP Daily

  2. Jonell Faust said:

    This is the first time i read about VaultPress. I presume that it is one of the WordPress plugin. Since this is for security of the website then it must be a necessary part of web development.

    • Beau Lebens said:

      VaultPress is good for security and for backups. If you're serious about running a business/website on the web, then you need to be serious about both of those things as well ๐Ÿ™‚

Comments are closed.