Thank you and goodbye, Shopify!
Reflecting on my time at Shopify (2009-2020).
Last Monday was my last day at Shopify. I had been on parental leave since February and was meant to return last week, but I decided to call it quits to continue hanging out with the baby.
It’s crazy to think that I’d worked at Shopify for nearly 11 years. That’s a third of my freakin’ life!
My time at Shopify
I wore a lot of different hats at Shopify, including:
- Theme designer & developer
- Theme support team lead
- Theme documentation specialist
- Brief stint as a UX designer
- Front end developer
I’m grateful to have worked at a company that allowed for so much movement. I worked with insanely smart, talented, and inspiring people who really helped me discover and sharpen my craft.
I do sometimes reflect on why I did not move up to a more senior role. I certainly had the ambition and talked to my lead about it. My reluctance to sacrifice my work/life balance likely held me back. I always had some sort of hobby outside of work that I obsessed about (music, soccer, jiu-jitsu, etc.) and I made it a point to always make time for them.
Another reason might have been that I often lacked confidence in my opinions. This is something I still struggle with today. I have always been a “go-with-the-flow” kind of guy, and am most comfortable in a supporting role (maybe that’s why I feel in love with playing the bass guitar, lol). I couldn’t see myself leading a team or making high-risk decisions.
That’s just one of several shortcomings I wish I had put more effort into improving. All that said, I wouldn’t say I regret anything… I worked hard every day to make an impact on my team and the company and was always motivated to learn new skills and technologies. What I would regret is not addressing and working on my weak spots in the next chapter of my life, whatever that may be.
To be honest I’m not really sure what’s next. In the meantime, I will do the following:
- Continue training Brazilian Jiu-jitsu, work my way towards my purple belt (which I’ve been fortunate to do here in New Zealand)
- Get back in touch with my creative side (pick up doodling and Adobe Illustrator again)
- Play music again (jazz bass and piano)
- Keep coding through side projects (websites and game development)
- Brush up on my French and Japanese so I can teach my son.
Most of all I want to tap into the mindset of 20-year old me and just be excited to learn new skills and start side projects. I’m currently in a fortunate position to do this and I don’t want to waste this opportunity.
I can’t quite put into words just how special Shopify has been for me. In the past 11 years, I’ve gone through an insane amount of life events (travels, relationships, breakups, moving cities, becoming a father, etc.) and Shopify was a constant throughout all of them. It’s bittersweet to finally say goodbye, but the timing feels right and it’s time I move on.
Thank you to Tobi, Daniel Weinand, and Ryan Langlois for putting their trust in me way back in 2009. You guys seriously changed my life. Thank you to all of my awesome coworkers during my time at Shopify, many of whom are now my very close friends. I love you all and I’m seriously so grateful for my experience.