I just wrapped up my first week with RedMonk. While everything is coming a mile a minute, I couldn’t be more excited to be here; this is far and away the best firehose I’ve ever had a chance to drink from. As Steve mentioned in his very kind introduction, this role is a bit of a shift for me. My professional background prior to joining RedMonk is in financial analysis and database administration.
I began my career as a financial analyst with an emphasis on forecasting and budgeting. I’ve spent literal years of my life working in Microsoft Excel, which means my first taste of coding happened in Visual Basic (VBA) when I learned to write macros.
My shift from financial analyst to database administrator arose from organizational practicality (though I can see how a casual observer would question how practical it could possibly be to put someone who didn’t initially know SQL in charge of a production database). In the end it came down to understanding the business implications of the data. The company decided to teach someone from the finance department how to run the system rather than trying to teach someone from IT how to approach finance. This ended up being fortuitous, as I discovered how much I enjoyed not only using and analyzing the data but also managing it.
I decided to go back to school and marry my love of finance with my love of data. I completed my MBA with a Business Intelligence certification from Colorado State University in May 2016. During school I also took advantage of the free resources on Coursera and started learning to code in R.
My focus at RedMonk will be broad, but the goal is to apply financially-driven analysis to various aspects of the technology industry. In particular, I’ll be looking at emerging growth technologies and markets including artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, bots, cloud, containers, platforms, and non-relational database categories.
I’ve interacted with the RedMonk community for the past five years at the Monktoberfest, and the caliber of the attendees and speakers is one of the biggest benefits of joining the team. I can’t wait to dive into the analysis, but even more, I am excited to work with all the excellent friends of RedMonk!
Alt + E S V?
True to my roots, the brainstorming process for naming my blog occurred in Excel. It didn’t take long for me to realize that what spoke to me most were not the name ideas getting dropped in the spreadsheet but rather my process of getting them there. I may have changed industries, but in my heart I will always be the financial analyst devoted to Windows Excel 2003 keyboard shortcuts.
Alt + E S V (i.e. paste values, without formatting or formulas) was one of my most used shortcuts. More than a decade later, the muscle memory behind it is alive and well even if it’s not the same shortcut I now use on a Mac.
This blog will be a lot more than pasted values, but the name felt like a decent place to ground things. Expect my writing to be data-driven and esoterically nerdy; deep dives into balance sheets and financial metrics coming soon!