My son and I are so thankful to the great folks at DreamHost for inviting us to LA for two wonderful days packed full of geeky fun and excitement!
Here’s a quick recap of our wonderful journey to Los Angeles.
Before the trip began, the DreamHost team really made an effort to determine what types of things I wanted to see and do while I was on site at the DreamHost office. Although there were many options, including a tour of the local datacenter, I chose to two primary options:
- Get some hands-on advice around all topics related to accelerating and securing WordPress sites
- Meet with product directors and the senior leadership team
More on that later.
The trip started with a tour of the office which is located on the 50th floor of a huge office building on Wilshire Boulevard. It overlooks the Hollywood sign and many other LA landmarks. The office itself has a very comfortable vibe… lots of open shared workspaces, pop culture references everywhere (no shortage of Doctor Who memorabilia), chalkboard walls, and a ping pong table in the kitchen! The office I worked at in the past was beige and bland… so, this was quite a difference.
Everyone I met… from support staff, to network security, to mangers, to department leaders… literally everyone, was super nice and very knowledgable. However, the thing that took me by surprise the most was just how passionate everyone was to work there and how much they’ll do to ensure every customer has a great experience with DreamHost’s products.
We then had an awesome lunch at a local seafood restaurant where we talked about many topics… some tech talk but also stories about what it’s like working in LA and generally getting to know everyone.
Increasing my knowledge about WordPress was ideal for me because I build around a dozen websites a year for small business owners. I set them up with their own DreamHost account and teach them how to maintain their sites. It’s a pretty good gig. That’s why sitting down with someone on the DreamHost team who is arguably one of the smartest WordPress gurus on the planet, Mika Epstein, was so important to me. Mika not only is WordPress genius, she can also explain very complex concepts in plain-English. I wish I could mind-meld with her so I could simply absorb her knowledge. If that were possible I would first wrap my head in duck-tape to keep it from exploding. I now have a few tips to better secure my customers sites and make them run a bit faster.
Having a extended Q&A session with the leadership team was very rewarding! Although I’m only one voice out of many many customers, I’m thrilled the key decision makers at DreamHost took the time to listen to what I had to say and provide some insights about the future goals of the company. Not surprisingly, I shared a very long list of things I love about the company and I also highlighted the DreamHost products and features that were most important to me… again, I’m someone who builds many sites across many separate DreamHost accounts so I may have slightly different needs than most customers.
The day ended with an early dinner in the office where I got to meet even more of the crew. That’s when my son found the Nerf dart gun and had a blast around the office.
Then it was off to the hotel on the Disneyland property, which is just a short distance from the DreamHost HQ. We hit the pool and the hot tub for a while then shopped our way through Downtown Disney. Legos are awesome by the way. Especially Star Wars, Marvel, and Lord or the Rings branded legos!
Day two was a “day on your own” adventure at the Disneyland parks. My son and I tore through both parks with military precision taking full advantage of the early entry option and the “fast-pass” system. We chose to follow the “If the ride has fast-pass, it’s worth riding” approach. We had a late lunch at the Carthy Circle restaurant… mmm more sea food!
We told Mickey that we would see him again in October aboard his cruise ship! He was happy to hear that news.
Overall… the trip could not have been better. My son and I are truly thankful for all the time, energy, and expense it took to make this happen… and I’m also thankful that so many people took time away from their day to meet with us.
The great folks at DreamHost have made a happy customer even happier!