It is now my honour to present the next our regular series of interviews with some of the very interesting people in Rational Client Support. This week, we'd like you to meet Christian Glockner, a Rational ClearQuest Technical Support Engineer out of IBM Rational, The Netherlands. Of course, Christian's roles also go far beyond technical support as you'll find out in the interview below; and don't forget to visit his profile on My developerWorks!
Tell us a little about yourself: who are you, what is your role in Rational Client Support?
My name is Christian Glockner, and primarily I work as Technical Support Engineer for IBM Rational ClearQuest in Rational's European support center located in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Apart from that I have several other roles, including coach for the Kepner-Tregoe Resolve methodology that Rational Client Support have adopted several years ago, and working as part of the Lab team in Amsterdam, making sure the infrastructure our colleagues use for reproducing client issues works.
How long have you been working for IBM and Rational?
It's hard to believe, but I've been with Rational (and IBM for that matter) for three years already! Doesn't time fly?
What are you currently working on?
Besides helping our clients resolve issues they are experiencing with ClearQuest, I am trying to figure out what we can do to further increase client satisfaction and resolve PMRs quicker than before.
Describe a normal day for you.
Luckily I don't have to be in the office at a specific time, so I like to sleep a bit longer than others (which makes my friends envy me badly). I am not a breakfast person, so I make myself on the way to work quickly, and normally I arrive there some time between 9 and 10. First I check any e-mail that has come in to see if anything from Development needs my attention (for example, in case a developer needs more information in order to reproduce a Defect). Next up is reviewing existing PMRs to see what we're going to do about them today, and that pretty much continues throughout the day.
What project are you the most proud of?
Probably that would have to be the work we have done for a new process that will change the way support works with development. We're really excited about it and we're planning to present it at this year's Innovate conference in June.
Are you a gadget person? What type of gadgets do you use?
I am not too much of a gadget person, but everything that has a screen gets my attention.
What gadget, which you currently own, can you not live without?
What is your favorite part of working for Rational Client Support?
There's really two or three aspects. For one, I just enjoy solving problems. Secondly I love helping people, so if I can help clients resolve issues I get the best of both worlds. And finally I enjoy the openness inside RCS (and IBM on the whole).
What are you passionate about?
Technology. That's why I work at IBM.
What tip or trick would you like to share with the class?
If you are a gadget guy and you listen to podcasts, then you should definitely listen to The Daily Giz Wiz.
How do you define success?
Professionally: If a client tells me I helped them resolve the issue they were having and if I manage to make work an enjoyable experience for my colleagues.
Personally: If I can make a difference to other people around me.
In your spare time, if you have any, what hobbies or activities interest you?
This is probably very nerdy, but I am really fond of airplanes and trains. I'm probably the last person to enjoy air travel, solely because it involves planes, clearly one of mankind's biggest inventions, and still a miracle in my book.
If you were stuck on a technology deprived island, what single technology could you not live without?
Definitely the Internet. I honestly don't know what I was doing without it all these years.
What is on your nightstand with regard to reading?
I don't read before going to bed, but rather on my daily commute by train. At the moment I'm reading The Unnamed by Joshua Ferris, which I can highly recommend.
Is there any technology that you think should get more respect and adoption but does not?
Solar Energy is still not as widely used as it could be, so definitely it should be adopted more widely.
How do you grow your technical skills?
I have always been curious to find out how things work and why they work the way they do. I found that I can also apply this in my job, so I really learn new things every day.