Farewell to John Deere

Copied below is the e-mail to my John Deere coworkers. It's a bittersweet goodbye, but I'm excited for my future with Dwolla.

After 6 years, I'm leaving John Deere for a position at a Des Moines startup. Saying goodbye to a job I love with people I admire at an organization that has been kicking so much ass lately is decidedly not easy. Unfortunately, I don't have a juicy story about epic betrayal, a bare-knuckle brawl with a coworker, or the burden of Squish test failures sending me over the edge. I was given every opportunity to advance and grow and will forever be indebted to this organization and its people. But experiencing a startup has been a dream of mine and though it may be risky, sometimes you have to touch the fire to see if it's hot. And, more importantly, another Hackathon is coming up and I want to retire undefeated. Rocky Marciano, not Balboa.

I started at Deere as an intern in the summer of 2006, back when ISG...I mean IVS…err AMS had about 40 people. At that time, I had one semester of programming experience in C and didn't know what an object, a debugger, or polymorphism was. To me, "testing" meant compile, run, poke around until it broke, fix, repeat. So I very literally learned everything I know about "the real world" and developing software from bothering the hell out of all of you.

I started to list the people that had a profound impact on my personal and professional development throughout the 2600, 1800, CommandCenter, 2630, and GSix projects, but at around 40 names I started humming that music they play during long-winded acceptance speeches at the Oscars. Nonetheless, to all of you, I give my sincerest of thanks. I also can't tell you how appreciative I've been of the respect and support given as news of my departure spread – it's something I won't soon forget.

And that's the thing – yes, John Deere is an excellent company, the Agile culture is fast-paced and exciting, and my projects were world changing. But at the end of the day, it's the people, the relationships I'll miss the most. So please do stay in touch with tweets or posts; I won't be that far away!

It's been my pleasure working with all of you. Farewell, thank you, and long live GSix!

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