I have been offered, and I will be accepting, a position at Hewlett Packard starting on April 3rd. This will be the end of RHS Consulting. I suppose I shouldn't say "the end" because one never knows for sure, but it is certainly the end of this incarnation.
I will be the Notes Architect for a team at HP that has a product called HP StorageWorks Reference Information Manager for Messaging. I'm very excited about the new challenges this will bring for me. I'm truly glad that I'll be getting an opportunity to change the way I'm working while continuing my 20+ years of involvement in the messaging and collaboration business and my 13+ years in the Lotus Notes and Domino business. I'll be based in Andover, MA, which is about a 25 minute commute for me.
I do want to stress something about this move: it is a personal choice, for a number of reasons. I'll go into some of them but not others here. It is definitely not an indication of lack of confidence in the IBM Lotus Notes and Domino products or the market for services related to them. In fact, I can in complete honesty tell you that the market is as strong as I have seen it in at least five years. I will be transitioning out of three active contracts and walking away from bidding on a major project for one of my ongoing clients, and I have had seven serious inquiries for my services from new or past clients in the last month alone -- of which I would have expected to get business from no less than five of them.
A bit paradoxically, it is actually the good health of the market that has been the biggest factor in my decision to make this move. What I'm seeing is a healthy but mature market, and that combination means that plenty of small projects are available but not a lot of big ones with big challenges and long-term committments. I'm sure that there are lots of people who love hopping from one small project to another and who will do extremely well in this market, and I'm actually sure I could do very well in it, too. In fact, if the trends I'm seeing continue, I could even see expanding my practice and bringing on a few employees and a full-time sales person... but that's not what I want to do.
I want to be in this Lotus Notes and Domino market, and I will be, but I don't want to be splitting my attention between so many projects simultaneously. I want bigger problems to chew on for longer. I want to be more focused, which will be less stressful and more stable for me and my family. The opportunity with HP will give me that.
So, what does this mean for my blog? I don't know yet. It will continue, almost certainly, but I will adapt to whatever policies HP asks me to.
And what does this mean for Yellow Is The New Black? Again, I don't know. Since my group at HP also has a product for Exchange, I am initially going to take it as an indication that I should probably turn over ownership of that site to someone else, and possibly moderate what I say in posts there, or possibly back out entirely. It could, on the other hand, mean that I'll find myself in a great position to be a fair and unbiased judge of things related to the Lotus and Microsoft market, and continue posting there in that mode. We'll just have to see about that.
And what will it mean regarding my participation with Show 'n Tell Thursday? For now, I believe that the answer is that it will mean no change at all. It might, but I doubt it.
Will I be a Lotusphere speaker? I don't know. Truthfully, though, one never knows until the track managers make their selections, so the answer is that I may or may not submit some abstracts and I may or may not be accepted as a speaker, and there's really nothing else to say. Will I be an attendee? I sure hope so, and I think so because I think that HP will know that it makes sense to send me. They are, after all, a perennial major sponsor with a siginificant exhibit in the showcase, and I'll be the technical lead on one of the products that they'll be showing. But I don't know, and I'm not going to speculate.
What else does it mean? Who knows? Maybe a songwriter knows. Maybe a line from one of the strangest films of all time knows..
Come gather 'round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You'll be drenched to the bone.
If your time to you
Is worth savin'
Then you better start swimmin'
Or you'll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin'.
That's one of the first few songs that I leaned to play on guitar 30+ years ago. The words are absolutely true for everyone at some stages in their lives. I'm embracing the words now, embracing change, and swimming to wherever the times will take me.
Wherever you go, there you are.
The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across The 8th Dimension
1. Bob Balaban03/29/2006 07:19:58 PM
Congratulations, Rich! I'm sure HP will benefit from your wisdom, experience and energy. Does this mean that HP will be joining Penumbra?
Regarding Buckaroo (Wherever you go, there you are. The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across The 8th Dimension), I would only add, "But your luggage is another story..."
2. Julian Robichaux03/29/2006 11:01:07 PM
That sounds like a fantastic opportunity. Congratulations! I hope you get to keep blogging the way you have been.
3. Amy Blumenfield03/30/2006 12:51:12 AM
Congrats! I'm sure you'll continue to be successful at your new position and will have all kinds of interesting new stories and adventures to share with us.
4. Chris Linfoot03/30/2006 02:35:46 AM
Good for you, Rich. I'm very happy for you.
I do hope you can keep on blogging though.
5. Stuart Downes03/30/2006 07:07:21 AM
Richard, I wish you well in your new role. I hope your role allows the option of maintaining your speaking engagements and blogging. I agree with your "large projects" comments. Our team in EMEA look after about 160,000 Lotus collaborative users in 12 accounts. 6 years ago if you'd looked around the large projects projects you would find external consultants and contractors on all of them. Now we have none.
I wish you well in your new role and will certainly keep following your blog.
6. Jon Johnston03/30/2006 08:33:02 AM
well, I hope you keep blogging, Rich, I enjoy coming over here and bantering with you once in a while. Good luck with your new position. Look forward to hearing more about it.
The economy seems to have burst this year. We have many networking projects happening, although, like you said, none real large (I don't like working for big corporates anyway, so that's fine w/me.)
7. Ben Rose03/30/2006 08:58:25 AM
Good luck Rich, don't forget your towel
8. Libby03/30/2006 10:12:06 AM
Excellent opportunity; just shows how valuable you have been (and will continue to be) in the industry. Congratuation and good luck.
9. Ken Yee03/30/2006 11:27:11 AM
Best of luck Rich. Funny how so many old-timer consultants have decided to switch to full-time jobs...
10. Joe Litton03/30/2006 11:34:44 AM
That sounds awesome! Congratulations and best wishes for some wonderful challenges and fun. Please DO consider blogging from the balanced perspective and comparison of products; that would be a tremendous service to the global IT community, and you are one of the few sources I would actually trust.
11. Mac Guidera03/30/2006 11:37:31 AM
Great news! Congrats and all the best!
12. Jack Dausman03/30/2006 12:59:58 PM
My read on your new job, is that H-P is seriously committed to working with IBM/Lotus customers. That hasn't always been the case, and it indicates the vitality of the platform, and your senior position as a spokesperson with expertise. That's nothing but good news, for you, IBM, and for all of us in the IBM/Lotus community.
13. Steve Castledine03/30/2006 03:15:12 PM
Good Luck rich - sounds like a great opportunity!
14. David Bailey03/30/2006 07:56:23 PM
I've been thinking of buying some more HPQ; now, I will.
I wish you the best!
15. jonvon03/30/2006 11:49:34 PM
rich, good luck man, and congratulations, that sounds great!
16. Gregg Eldred03/31/2006 09:19:00 AM
Rich, best of luck in your new position!
17. Danny Lawrence03/31/2006 01:18:33 PM
Or as the time lords say: "No matter whenever it is you go, then you are"
Congratulations Rich. I'm sure it will work out for you.
18. Alan Lepofsky03/31/2006 01:47:36 PM
"It is definitely not an indication of lack of confidence in the IBM Lotus Notes and Domino products or the market for services related to them" My take is that you (and HP) are both very serious about Domino, and that is great news for everyone! Good luck, and let's get those customer success stories with your new product rolling!
19. Brian Benz03/31/2006 02:42:26 PM
Congrats and good luck!
I too am starting a new job, on Monday, at IBM, and shutting down BenzTech...
20. Chris Whisonant03/31/2006 11:07:24 PM
Rich, congrats on this new opportunity! I know you'll do well and the bonus of more stability (and time) with your family will be great!
21. Ben Poole04/01/2006 08:36:43 AM
Excellent news. Congratulations and good luck. Keep that yellow flag flying!
22. Alan Bell04/01/2006 04:14:55 PM
best of luck at the new job Rich, sounds like an exciting opportunity!
23. Mathias Pohl04/02/2006 02:20:08 PM
just found your name on the HP Peoplefinder. Congrats and welcome to HP.
24. David Marshak04/02/2006 07:13:43 PM
Let me add my congratulations...hope to see you at Lotusphere or Bamboo...which ever comes first.
25. Richard Schwartz04/03/2006 12:41:22 AM
Thanks to everyone. I appreciate all your good wishes. I start at HP in the morning!
26. Ed Brill04/03/2006 11:54:43 AM
Belated congrats, Rich -- welcome (back) to the corporate world...
27. chenyingying10/17/2016 12:15:01 AM