A Day in the Life: Ben Price (Backend Engineering Manager, Mercari)

Ben Price (Backend Engineering Manager, Mercari)

What has your journey in tech been like so far?

I’m originally from Canada, but I have been living and working in Japan as an engineer on and off for about five years as a backend engineer for numerous fintech projects.

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced moving into your current role?

Balancing product and engineering after an agile adoption phase through continuous communication with all parties involved.

Can you briefly describe your stack and workflow?

Our legacy codebase, which is still kicking around, was built with PHP and MySQL hosted on dedicated servers. We’ve been actively migrating to a new microservice architecture using GoLang and various Google Cloud Platform tools such as BigQuery and Cloud SQL. But of course, we work on releasing new features at the same time!

What does your typical day look like?

Engineering team members at Mercari

What’s the best and worst part of your job?

The best part about working at Mercari is that there is always an opportunity for professional growth. One of our company values is “Go Bold,” and the company encourages people to come up with big, crazy ideas and to not be afraid of failure. It’s rare to see a large corporate company that encourages employees to take a chance, and that kind of company culture is what allows members to set their own path.

What is your most useful resource (book, blog, newsletter)?

I would say my most useful resource is talking to my peers.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve received?

Managing people is all about building relationships with those people — not telling them what to do.

What’s one thing you’d like to learn, develop, or work on in 2020?

I would like to work on defining a clear, long-term technical and product roadmap for my part of the organization. Mercari is just seven years old, so we are still in the phase of trying to define the processes to adjust to the growth of the company.

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