Dave Woods is a Software Engineering Manager, and he is driven providing value for our customers. As his career has grown, he has solved more and more complex problems for a variety of organizations. He finds a sense of satisfaction in collaborative problem-solving and has built a supportive global community across his team. Learn more about Dave’s career growth and inspirations below.
Q: Who are you and what do you do?
A: I’m Dave Woods, my pronouns are him and his. I am a Software Engineering Manager, and I am based near Manchester in the UK.
Q: What is your day-to-day work like at Upland?
A: I’m part of the RightAnswers development team. So we work on the development of the core project and integrations. We work as a team with product management, and try to deliver enhancements and fix bugs and issues. It’s quite a cool team, because we get to interact with all parts of the RightAnswers business.
Q: What is your favorite part of the job?
A: Probably the challenge that it brings in terms of problem solving: the nerdy stuff that brought me to software development in the first place. I also enjoy working with people, both on my team and customers. No two customers are the same, but they’re all quite knowledgeable in the area we serve.
Q: How did you start working at Upland? How long have you been here?
A: I joined RightAnswers before it was acquired in 2017, about 9 years ago. I’m not going to lie, it’s a scary time when you get acquired. There’s lots of uncertainty, but you’ve just got to trust in yourself, go with the flow, and keep the customer’s perspective in mind. My main focus at the time was making sure our customers weren’t impacted.
Q: What has your career growth been like at Upland?
A: When I first joined the company, I was an implementation engineer. I would sell to customers and work on customization and implementation, and I had never had that much customer contact in more traditional development roles. I really enjoyed the chance to grow my communication skills; I’ve been told that one of my strengths is being technical but not sounding overly technical with customers. In the first year after we were acquired, I became a Solution Architect within the Professional Services department. It was more globally focused, and I learned a lot working with customers outside of Europe. My current role of Software Engineering Manager came up about a year ago, and it wasn’t one to turn down! It’s still early to judge it, but I’m really enjoying it so far. At Upland, you always get the chance to grow.
Q: Tell me about a time you felt successful.
A: I felt successful when we implemented RightAnswers with a customer with particularly complex requirements. It feels especially good to succeed with my team. When I first joined Upland, there was only a couple of us in the UK. We were a small team that worked really closely together, and even as the team has grown I’ve never really felt like I’ve had to work alone.
Q: What is it like to work for a US-based company while living in the UK?
A: There’s lots of spelling mistakes, you in the US don’t spell things properly! You forget the ‘u’ in ‘colour’ and whatnot. I’m joking, it doesn’t even really feel like I work for a US-based company because my team spans the globe, from India to the UK to the US to Mexico. It feels like a truly global organization.
Q: Who inspires you?
A: There’s a guy called David Goggins, and I like his videos. He’s an ex-US Special Forces person. He’s really intense and driven, and in the nicest way possible, a little bit nuts. He has an interesting back story, and he always talks about how it doesn’t matter what life throws at you, you’ve got to battle through it. I don’t aspire to be just like him or anything, but I could probably do with a little bit more get-up-and-go Goggins attitude! Also, if anyone looks up David Goggins, I wouldn’t do it with your kids around, he’s a very sweary chap!
Q: In one word, what does being an Uplander mean to you?
A: I would say satisfying. It’s not a perfect workplace, obviously, but I’m on a team of people dedicated to finding solutions and resolutions. I always end my workday feeling satisfied and looking forward to what’s coming next.