Internal Strategy Consultant, Data
This page is intended to help others understand what it might be like to work with me, especially people who haven’t worked with me before.
It’s also a well-intentioned effort at building some trust by being intentionally vulnerable, and to share my ideas of a good working relationship to reduce the anxiety of people who might be on my team.
Please feel free to contribute to this page by opening a merge request.
You don't have to solve all the problems of the universe. Just the one sitting right in front of you.
I joined GitLab in June 2018. I was hired as GitLab's first Data Analyst into the Data Team by my then-manager Taylor Murphy. When I joined GitLab I wanted three things in a role: 1. to be a first-class citizen in an all-remote organization, 2. to be part of a team, and 3. the opportunity to grow with GitLab. First, I had experienced hybrid-remote teams and knew how difficult it was to be the exception-to-the-in-office-rule. Second, I've spent a lot of time as the solo-data person, and my knowledge was a bit cobbled together. I wanted to be part of team to have people to learn from and develop ideas with. Finally, I wasn't looking for role for the next year to eighteen months. I was looking for where I was going to be for the next five or seven years. And, wow, has GitLab checked all my boxes!
I spent 10 months as a Data Analyst (what some other people would call an Analytics Engineer) with over six months as the sole data analyst, as the company grew from under 300 to over 600. In May 2019, I moved into a Data Engineering role, ready for my next challenge as the team and my technical chops grew.
In September 2019, I moved into the Chief of Staff Team as an Internal Strategy Consultant, Data.
If you had asked me in June if I would ever have moved into a Strategy role, or really anywhere outside of the data team, I probably would have laughed.
I mean, I spent my own money buying
I have had big visions for the GitLab Data Team since before I accepted my offer that spring day in 2018.
But right now, it's an incredible challenge, and I'm really enjoying what I do.
And, there's still no better feeling than having a question and being able to answer it myself!
If you ask me for a meeting, I will push you to see if it can be done asynchronously.
I will never act on something as if it's urgent unless you explicitly say it is.
Optimizing the bookmarks bar in my Browser has really made my life much easier. I have never used the Bookmarks Bar before (and still don't on my personal laptop). From left to right, here's what lives on my Bookmarks Bar:
I wrote the data team's onboarding script based mostly on my own workflow preferences.
I love taking personality tests. Even though they're descriptive not prescriptive, they make it easier to communicate with other folks about how I generally approach situations or interactions. Personality frameworks do not give people excuses to be jerks.
Here is my DISC Assessment from July 2019: DISC Profile for July 2019
Here is my DISC Assessment from June 2015 (to see the very little change): DISC Profile for June 2015
We have resources at GitLab on SOCIAL STYLES. I am a Driver. Here are my results.
I am a Type 3, Wing 4. This type is often called The Performer. Read more about Type 3 from the Enneagram Institute.
I am an ENTJ. This type is often called The Commander. Read more about ENTJs.
This isn't a weakness or a strength, by default, as it can be both. I like lifting because it's the simplest way to see that measurable input leads to a certain measurable output.
While the list of areas to improve is long- infinite, even- I thought I'd take a second to highlight three weaknesses that have the most negative impact on my work. I've tried to internalize the GitLab Iteration value, especially this line from Focusing on Improvement, "We believe great companies sound negative because they focus on what they can improve, not on what is working." I believe the same can be true at the individual level.
Here are some feedback pieces I've received while at GitLab:
It is my tendency to want to offer a thought as soon as it pops into my head. I am working to address this by:
I am terrible at estimating. I have gotten better, but I always only imagine the best-case scenario. Estimating is hard to begin with, add that I am bad and that I am optimistic, and you've got a sauce for terribleness. I am working to address this by:
I'm an obliger, so when people ask me for things, my answer is that I want to please. Because I want to help everyone- I want to meet all external expectations set on me- I say yes without consideration of what I already have on my plate. As a result, I end up working on much more than I should be working on, leading me to work on nights and weekends.
I am no stranger to hard work, in fact I pride myself on my ethic. Saying yes, though, is a problem because I spend time working on the things that are not the things I should be spending my time on. I have gotten better by combining my love for GTD with doubling down on the Ivy Lee Method.
That being said, I still have to learn that "No" is a complete sentence.
As an aside, I think that at least part of the reason I'm so bad at estimating is that I let things creep in that throw off my original estimation.
Emilie Schario has significant experience scaling Data & Analytics teams without scaling their headcount, while being responsive to the hypergrowth of the business. As GitLab’s first Data Analyst, then Data Engineer, Analytics, she oversaw 4x growth in the Data function. Today, she leverages her data skills in a Strategy role supporting the entire business. She is a contributor to many open source projects including dbt, Meltano, and GitLab. When not at her day job, Emilie can be found in her local CrossFit box or volunteering with Operation Code, codebar, TechSAV, or MilSpouse Coders. An Army wife, Emilie lives in Savannah, GA with her husband Casey. Emilie is a Princeton University and Venture for America Alumna.