My Name Is Greg White — This Is Why I Joined Aha!

Greg White

I was 10 years old when I first played the bass. From that first note, I was hooked. I would get home from school and practice for hours. I would play well into the night (or at least until my family asked me to stop so they could get some sleep). Eventually, I found other musicians to play with, occasionally jamming at local venues — funk, jazz, rock, metal, you name it.  

I loved the foundational nature of the bass — how the way I played could drive a rhythm or set the stage for others to shine.

I thought music was my life’s purpose. My plan was to go to music school for jazz composition and to teach so I could share my love of music with others. But that plan got turned on its head when I did not get into music school. The problem was not my ability. I simply did not have the formal education in music theory that was required.

I had always been fascinated with computers as well, but my love of music always overshadowed it. So, it is somewhat ironic that I ended up going to school for another kind of theory: computer science. Instead of arranging musical notes, I was arranging code.

While in college, I started working with my dad at a consultancy. We developed a suite of tools to augment Autodesk Revit, a desktop 3D modeling tool for engineers. One of my first tasks was to automate a scheduling process that took three or four days to do by hand — I wrote a script that could do it in 30 seconds. My co-workers were thrilled to get that time back. And I was amazed to see the impact a bit of code could make.

I enjoyed hearing a problem, brainstorming possible solutions, providing a viable solution, and (most importantly) seeing the impact it had on my co-workers.

Next, I moved to a digital marketing agency, where my job was to automate the processing of massive amounts of data. This was when I was first introduced to Ruby on Rails and I immediately saw the potential it had to reach people. Within minutes, our changes were made visible.

After working at the agency for about a year, a close friend and fellow engineer convinced me to join him at a local mobile application consultancy — creating APIs, CMS tools, and web experiences for native mobile applications. Our team was agile and would meet regularly with clients to discuss the newly implemented features and what should come next. I loved the quick feedback cycle on what we could do better.

Our work empowered customers to make powerful data insights and to grow accordingly. To me, this is what software should be — impactful and meaningful.

While I found the work fulfilling, I wanted to work on a larger, more established product — one where I could reach even more people and influence their lives for the better. So, when my friend left the consultancy to work at Aha!, I wanted to hear more. He was constantly talking about the company’s onboarding process, impressive application, and great co-workers. He told me to check out the blog. I started reading and became fascinated.

I liked how Aha! shared its product management knowledge so openly, but what really sold me was the voice of the company — optimistic and refreshing. The other thing that appealed to me was the application itself. I knew I wanted to work on it because Aha! is more than just a place to create and store product data. It is a place to understand and visualize it.

Aha! checked all the boxes for me: an excellent culture, a great team of experts, and meaningful work on an established product.

I feel like I belong here. From the very first day, I felt like I was a part of the team. Everyone is exceedingly kind. I know my Aha! teammates better than I did every one of my previous co-workers that I shared an office with.

I also truly feel like my work is making a difference. I get to work on features that directly help our customers — bug fixes, report reworks, and new integrations. One of my favorites was an integration that allows users to create to-dos and features directly in Aha! from Slack. I am proud of the code. But I am more proud of how useful it is to the people who rely on it every day to get more done and build their own lovable products.

It all reminds me a lot of what I loved about playing the bass. My work at Aha! helps lays the foundation so others can shine.

That is why I joined Aha! — and why you should too.

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