Interview: Rhonda Rondeau

Written by Guido Jansen in
January 2011

It's time for another Magento interview! This time we have the honor to learn more about Rhonda Rondeau, our international Magento Community Manager from Magento Inc! Rhonda lives and works in Los Angeles, USA. You can connect with her on LinkedIn, Facebook, Myspace (where she worked before Magento) or Twitter and of course on the Magento forum as rondata where she is one of the moderators.

What did you dream of becoming as a child?

I always knew I'd end up doing something technical. I was fascinated with electronics. I was the kid pulling apart her first IBM AT computer at 14 years old and trying to figure out how it worked with a "Know your PC" book. I think I took out the power more than once at home messing with rewiring. ;)

My philosophy on life is...

The glass is always half full. Glasses are created empty and if there's anything in it whatsoever someone put forth the effort to get it there and you should damn well respect that effort ;)

What is your average day like?

My day starts at 4am and doesn't end until about 11pm. It's a mixture of work and family and believe it or not very random. At work - I focus on tasks as they come up prioritizing them in my head until someone with a more important agenda needs me.

The ideal night out is...

A night out? What is this strange concept that you're speaking of?

I'm good at...

Mostly everything technical. I just have one of those mechanical minds ;) I taught myself how to program on dbase at 16 and continued taking jobs learning everything from configuration management to IT (networking, system admin and security) and back again. I also talk a lot. ;) It's both a blessing and a curse.

I'm very bad at...

Public Speaking. I don't know if I'm bad at it, I have no confidence when it comes to it. I'm great at *everything* else, of course. ;)

What are you proud of?

At work, I am really proud and energized by the folks in our community. I love talking to them, solving their problems, and working closely with our volunteer moderators and learning from them. Our community is growing like crazy, participation is picking up, we have less unanswered questions and more social contact channels. It's shaping up to be a great year.At home, I'm mostly proud of my family and my accomplishments as a mom. I think I handle my world pretty well :)

How did you get involved in Magento?

I was hired the Community Manager here at the end of August. It so happened that an team member from a previous job moved to Magento and thought the community management position would be perfect for me. So I got involved with Magento by applying for the position. :>

I am (still/currently) involved with Magento because...

It's a good product! All the products are good and we're working on some really awesome new things. I'm looking forward to seeing what 2011 has in store for Magento.

What should every newcomer know about Magento?

I wish everyone knew new Magento user (and existing members) knew how strong and awesome our community is becoming and that we're here for you!  We have several dedicated folks that spend lots of time on our social channels answering questions and posting helpful answers and solutions. Here's just a few of our channels:

For other information related to Magento, Connect and Mobile:

These are just a few of our communication channels (but you'll probably get the fastest response on our forums or ask_magento). Which feature would you really like to see added to Magento? There are a ton of great suggestions for Magento software I see in the forums all the time but I'm still learning.

What's the first thing you would improve on magentocommerce.com?

Well, there's no secret that we've been looking at and evaluating new forum software. I think we've outgrown our current solution and while I don't like to make promises (until I have a blueprint in my hand) but that's definitely on my Radar. Also, very much looking forward to revamping Magento Connect. Lots of enhancement opportunities there :)

What are your plans with Magento in the (near) future?

IMAGINE of course! Very much looking forward to the conference and to meeting and connecting a person with the online persona that I've been talking to over the last few months.

Complete the sentence "Magento changes the e-commerce landscape forever because..."

... Magento can do pretty much anything. If it doesn't exist it can be created.  "We've got an extension for that"! Thanks Rhonda for your cooperation! Next time I'll interview Roy Andre Tollefsen from Silverthemes. If you want to stay up-to-date, you can subscribe to the RSS feed, the Newsletter or my Facebook page.

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