January 28, 2020
Michael Bush, Junior Software Engineer, recently celebrated his one year anniversary at GK. Here he shares his experience of being part of the team.
Tell us about something you do that you are very good at?
I’m a very good bicycle mechanic. In the 13 years I worked in bike shops, I hand-built carbon fibre wheelsets for $10,000 handmade titanium racing bikes, repaired and restored 75-year-old Schwinn cruisers (a few even older than that), and helped lots of commuters and cross-country tourists to keep their bikes running for decades.
Tell us about something embarrassing that you have done?
In 2003 I rode my bike from Florence, Oregon, on the coast, back to Chicago with two friends. I have a tendency to be hyper-focused at times, and occasionally miss important details (which makes peer review and feedback an important part of a strong workplace). In any case, I must have taken my glasses off when we stopped by the side of the road to do some stretching after breakfast. We rode another ten miles before I noticed I’d forgotten them. So, we were all forced to ride back ten miles back the way we’d come in order to fetch the glasses. My friend Greg later told me he would’ve killed me if it weren’t for the German techno on his iPod.
Why do you work at GreenKey?
GK initially appealed to me more from a cultural than a technical perspective. I’m a strong believer in continual peer review and iterative improvement; also, in being optimistic, starting small and making the most of what’s available at hand. GK’s values – including compassionate candour, self-awareness and curiosity – were characteristics I could immediately relate to.
More so than the words alone, my first interactions with the GK team made those values very apparent. I feel continually challenged by the work, but also greatly supported and appreciated as a new developer.
What do you like to work on at GreenKey?
I like variety in the work I do. At GreenKey, that means getting to work with different languages and paradigms – GoLang, Python, Node.JS, Typescript – and I like to work “full stack” on a feature, usually beginning with the user interaction back to the way server code is organized.
I spent this past year primarily working on Blotter, which was GK’s co-development project with IPC. Possibly the most interesting part of that was watching how rapidly goals and approaches evolve in a small, flexible company.
Who do you most admire at GreenKey and why?
This is a difficult question, because I’m impressed by so many of my colleagues. I recently began working more closely with Corey Burrows, who started working at GK around the same time as me, and has been a Software Engineer for 20+ years. He’s a very soft-spoken, laconic guy, very even-keeled. He produces high-quality work, and is a good communicator with strong ideas about best practices and patterns for managing complexity in stateful applications. Corey is also incredibly fast. Like grain thresher fast.
As a new Software Engineer, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by the pace more experienced folks set around me. So, I’m very appreciative to see people so calm and collected around me, who are also setting such a high bar.