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David Przybilla Software Development

David Przybilla

Software Development

Adapt technology to the corporate world to make companies more competitive and productive.

Q1

Please tell me about your current role at HDE.

I work as a Software Engineer. My goal is to maintain and build the needed software and architecture for the services that HDE clients use.

As a software engineer, I have to make sure that I am solving the right problem with the right technologies. So with my team I discuss issues such as what architecture to use, what technologies to stack up and how to improve our processes to deliver our softwares.

Each team is responsible of the services they build, so I’m not just writing code but making sure that it is instrumentalized and monitored.

At HDE, each team can choose their own tech stack depending on the project. In my team we use a lot of python and recently we started to use Golang. Both of these languages are well loved in our organisation. Others languages are allowed, but those two are significantly preferred.

Q2

As a member of HDE, what is the most exciting part of your current position?

The most exciting part about working at HDE is the room for “learning”. We are always playing with new technologies to solve interesting problems, most of which needs to be solved with scalability in mind.

Since our teams have been growing, we have been trying different approaches on how to organise our teams better. This led us to experiment often on how we do our software delivery, CI/ Ops pipelines, etc. In my team we are eager to change and experiment.

In my role in particular, I feel that it is an interesting challenge to talk to people from different parts of our business to tackle internal problems, like how to communicate better. We are provided the space to experiment new workflows and technologies.

At HDE, we are encouraged to go to conferences as well as becoming the speakers. I’m doing my best to get into a few conferences as a speaker next year, which I find exciting as I feel talking in public is challenging for me.

Q3

What kind of culture does HDE have?

Before working at HDE, I thought it would be impossible for me to work for a Japanese company since sadly, Japanese companies have a very bad reputation abroad in terms of its work ethic. However, after joining HDE as an intern, my image of Japanese companies completely changed.

At our company I can discuss openly with my team about new ideas, there are opportunities to learn from others and let others learn from me. There is respect for other people’s ideas and point of view as well. HDE’s culture is that of experimentation and change. Discussions and sharing of ideas is at the core of its working style.

I was particularly worried about overtime as I heard that overtime work in Japan was crazy, but HDE knows that being productive is not necessarily working overtime.

This means that I can manage my personal time well, and live by, “working hard and playing harder”. The latter goes in hand with our flexible schedule, which allows me to avoid Tokyo’s crowded trains and allowing me to work at a schedule that I find is best for me.
I am an early bird so I can enjoy my time at the office early in the morning, but some of my coworkers work better late in the evening.

A few times during the week we have coffee during “coffee time” while talking about random topics with all sorts of people in the company and I simply love that time.

As a final point, diversity is celebrated at HDE. I can experience Japanese culture at HDE, but
I can also experience/ celebrate other cultures and ways of thinking.

Q4

Please tell me about your dreams, ambitions or hope for the future at HDE or in life.

As for my professional future, I would like to keep solving interesting technical problems.
I love programming and learning about new technologies. I would like to start taking part in more as a speaker in tech conferences since I found the benefits of it at the last one I did at HDE.

Another goal I have is becoming proficient in Japanese. This is not only because I like the language, but in order to integrate better into the Japanese society, I feel that learning the language is a necessity. This includes being able to understand the problems of my local community and offer my skills to help solve them.

As for HDE, I hope that my contributions impact our clients in a positive manner and that we continue delivering value to them.

As for my personal life, recently I entered my 30s and feel that a new stage in my life has begun. For the next 10 years of my life, I hope to have a healthier lifestyle through daily exercise and eating healthy. As a long-term goal, I would like to start a family.

Q5

What type of people would you want to work with?

I want to work with people who have a “team” mindset. This means:
– People who can communicate well
– People who share their point of view
– People who respect other’s point of views

In my ideal team, my coworkers and I are aware of our personal weak points and are able to seek help and assistance without feeling ashamed. Furthermore, I’d like all members to be aware of our strengths without being arrogant.

When you are building a software that you know will eventually fail, it’s not a question of “if” but “when”. So when the failure occurs, I want to feel that I am in a team where all members are concerned about how to help each other out rather than pointing fingers at those who might be responsible of that failure.

I want to be in a team where we all have a good sense of humour to deal with stressful situations, and ideally, be surrounded by those who are constantly learning and encouraging me to learn new things.

Q6

What is it like for you to live in Tokyo?

I have lived in many different countries and travelled to many others while working remotely. After living in Tokyo for a year, I feel that it would be hard for me to live anywhere else. Tokyo offers a lot of fun activities, great food, lots of people to socialize with while being extremely safe and clean.

Moving to a new city is never easy, but moving here was not really as troublesome as I initially thought. Finding a place to live was much easier than I initially expected.

I would be lying if I said learning Japanese is not an issue as it has been a challenge. But I personally love learning languages, so I’m having fun with it. If you are in love with Japanese culture, learning the language should not be a major problem.

People in Tokyo are really kind that I’m always deeply surprised when Tokyoites go out of their way to assist me with language issues.

One of the bad sides of Tokyo is the packed trains during the peak hours. They are extremely crowded but thanks to HDE’s flextime, I can avoid such trains most of the time.

Having fun and socializing is an important part for my well being, and Tokyo offers a lot of opportunities to meet new people. I was a bit concerned about this when I first moved here, but it hasn’t been a major problem up until now.

After being exposed to so many cultures and ways of living, it is hard to call a place “home”, but while writing this I came back to Tokyo from a business trip, and as the plane touched down, I couldn’t help feeling that I was “home”.

Q7

What does "Liberation of Technology" mean to you?

In our personal life, we use a lot of technology and we are eager to use new technologies at our homes. For example, whenever there is a new gadget like the smartphone, everyone wants to get it as soon as possible to a point where some of us would even queue for a long time outside the stores.

The corporate world is a different story since companies will adopt technologies at a much slower pace. Thus “Liberation of Technology” to me means adapting those technologies to the corporate world to make companies more competitive and productive.

It means that whenever we are building a service we have to make sure that we are delivering value to our clients, and not just adding an extra layer of technology that they have to deal with.

It means to know that my work as a software engineer has value as it enables companies to make the most out of technology.