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It's that time of the year again – the end of the year – and it's a great opportunity to reflect on the past 12 months and all that we've accomplished. This year has flown by, but it's been a year of growth and learning for me.

I also wrote about my experience in 2021 if you want to take a look at how that went down.

New role at work

I was officially promoted to the Technical Lead role at Gfinity Digital Media. This has meant shifting my focus more towards management than coding. While there are some aspects of the role that I don't enjoy as much, like an increase in meetings and process management, I'm excited to be able to play a bigger role in shaping the vision and strategy of the company. I've also really enjoyed improving the workflow of my team and helping them grow as we work to make our sites better with each release.

Major accomplishments

Together with my amazing team, we were able to accomplish quite a lot. Some of the highlights include:

  • Migrating two new sites from WordPress to our custom Manifold tech stack
  • Adding a suite of automation tools to help our content team produce better content faster
  • Improving our personalization tech to serve more personalized promotions on our network
  • Working with the Stockinformer team to add a custom products’ widget on our sites that can track the stock and prices of products in almost real-time
  • Faster and smoother editing experience for larger articles in our CMS
  • More fine-grained access controls for our CMS
  • More UI improvements to large sections of our sites like navigation, search, article cards, image and video galleries, etc
  • Improved the speed of RSS feed and sitemap generation significantly
  • New Ad placement algorithm to improve the UX of our sites while boosting ad revenue and impressions
  • Started adding automated tests for the most important parts of our codebase
  • Improvements to documentation and product analytics

Things I learned in 2022

I've been able to learn a lot about management this year, but that has limited my ability to learn new technical skills. To make up for this, I've made a conscious effort to set aside personal time to work on side projects. Some of the things I've learned or delved deeper into this year include:

One of the main takeaways I've had this year is the importance of being clinical in deciding where to spend my time and energy. I also plan to be more consistent with my "learning in public" approach and not worry so much about perfection.

Things I want to learn in 2023

I already have a huge list of things I want to learn in 2023. This may change in the future but here are the things I want to learn next year:

  • More Sveltekit (I really like the progressive enhancement concepts and the simplicity of the dev experience)
  • More Supabase and Postgres (I want to do more side-projects using supabase and want to dive deeper into Postgres too)
  • Improving my SEO knowledge (while ChatGPT is a threat to google, I don’t see the value of SEO skills declining for at least another decade)
  • Improving my backend skills (I want to get some experience with more backend technologies so that I can be a bit more well-rounded)
  • Marketing (I want to be able to market my side-projects and start generating some revenue from them)
  • Writing (I want to write more in 2023 and keep improving my writing and communication skills)
  • Machine Learning and AI models
  • Finally, I want to continue improving my team leadership skills and finding ways to better support and empower my team.

My focus in 2023

I’m honestly looking forward to 2023. I want to launch a couple of products and learn how to market them. Furthermore, I’m also looking forward to doing more svelte and learning more about backend technologies. It’s going to be hard, but I’m going to try to write a lot more and document my journey in 2023 as I build and learn new things along the way. Happy new year, everyone! Hope you have a great year ahead.

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