This month marked SkySQL's first anniversary. It also marks my 6 months with the company, after being with MySQL AB (and then Sun and finally Oracle) for over 5 years. As good a time as any for a look back and some musings of the future.
In late 2005 I took a position in the web team (a part of Marketing) at MySQL AB. It was a great company to work for, with a great team of people and a truly great spirit. The idea that they were making a difference every day was palpable. I then saw it taken over by Sun Microsystems and shortly after by Oracle Corporation. We went from 500 employees to 30,000 and then to 100,000. My job satisfaction started to decline. I felt more like I was battling for every concession rather than revelling in what we were able to achieve. I needed a change.
When I joined SkySQL it was like going home - I knew pretty much everyone at the company and that great spirit of family, that sense of being able to achieve great things, the coming together of like minds with a shared vision was what drew me there and continues to inspire me. It is, after all, about the people. The team that created the world class support that MySQL AB was renowned for, the team that developed the training courses that brought MySQL knowledge to thousands, the management that inspired me in the early days at MySQL AB were all here, doing what they do best.
One of the prime reasons I moved from Oracle was that I saw from the inside the change in focus on MySQL. I saw that the team that manages the mysql.com domains cut from 6 down to 2. I saw the desperate backroom struggles to ensure the MySQL community sites were not taken down. I saw some truly stupid management decisions based solely on personal animosity rather than sound business sense. I saw the sales team starved of leads because of that stupidity. I saw the inter-departmental rivalry that instead of being a force for excellence was a block to cooperation and a stifling of innovation. I saw great talent leaving the company in an air of pessimism.
What I see in SkySQL is an optimism and a sense of shared goal, a vitality and a willingness to go beyond the normal to achieve excellence. I see what we used to call the "can-do" spirit. That ethos is what keeps me showing up at work each day, trying to do my part in the bigger picture and making SkySQL the first place you think of when you think open databases.
There are some exciting things happening at SkySQL and the future is looking very bright. I feel honoured to be a part of it all.