What does the WordPress Executive Director do?

Matt Report

18-01-2022 • 34 mins

If you’re like me, you know Josepha Haden Chomposy is the Director for WordPress the open source project in title, but you probably don’t know what she does on a day to day basis.

Or that she’s part of the Open Source Group Division inside of Automattic. Something I always knew, but once framed that way in discussion, was more interesting to hear.

I was lucky enough to chat with Josepha for nearly an hour, so I’m breaking up the conversation in two parts. Today, part 1, we’ll cover the logistics of her role, bringing WordCamps back, and the challenges with Gutenberg.

Thanks to folks over at Malcare for supporting this episode of the Matt Report. If you want to support me, you can buy me a digital coffee or join the super-not-so-secret Discord group for $79/year at buymeacoffee.com/mattreport

Episode transcription

[00:00:00] Josepha: You say that’s the easiest question, but like anyone who has spent any time with me knows that I also spend a lot of time, like, considering, like what, what, what are my, what am I doing? What, what purpose do I bring to the world? Who am I when I’m not trying to accomplish things? Like, yeah, it’s easy, but it’s not easy.

[00:00:17] So yeah. I show stuff. I Hayden jumbo, C a WordPress projects, executive director since 2019. So I’m starting my what third year of it is that right? Yeah. Starting my third year of it, time flies.

[00:00:29] Matt: That’s 30 years in COVID years, by the way.

[00:00:32] Josepha: ain’t that true? Isn’t that true? And before I did this, I actually was as my Twitter bio suggests very much into.

[00:00:43] Digital literacy and making sure that that communities were safe and sound, because I think that communities are the foundation of everything that we try to do in the world. And so, yeah, that’s me.

[00:00:53] Matt: There’s a lot of folks who think of community as well. It’s a big marketing buzzword for sure. Right. Everyone who has a product company wants a community. But they are looking at community in probably a very lesser form definition in a silo and something to just kind of prop up either their brand or product.

[00:01:12] Maybe get some feedback and get really interested. Customers. Community is a whole different ball game and scale at your level. Give us a sense of just like the daily routine. One has to go through to manage what you have to manage.

[00:01:29] Josepha: Gosh, from a community aspect or just from like me as a

[00:01:33] Matt: you wake up and you’re and you look at your wall-to-wall meetings. Cause I, I imagine largely that’s what you’re doing is meeting talking to people, fusing ideas, together, shaking hands, dealing with folks, maybe crying and laughing and arguing. How do you do it?

[00:01:50] Josepha: I’ll tell you, number one, that only about a quarter of my time, these. Is spent in meetings, which is really different from, from how it used to be. I used to spend about 60% of my time in meetings. And that was really hard just cause when you’re in a meeting, you really have to stay present to, to really support the people that you’re there with.

[00:02:09] And, and also to really get that work done and be as fruitful as you can with it. A