This profile of Aaron Lee is part of our ‘Who Works at Rulesware’ series, profiling some of the exceptional people who’ve chosen to contribute to Rulesware, in an effort to share what they do with our clients and future employees.
What’s your role/title, and how would you–most simply–describe what you do?
My title/role is Senior Business Architect. In short, I am responsible for collaborating with business stakeholders at our clients to analyze the business process that we are charged with improving/defining, gathering and defining the requirements associated with the steps of that process, and to work side by side with the technical team to ensure that the technical PRPC solution that the team is building fulfills those requirements which will then enable our clients to carry out their rebuilt business processes in a way that maximizes value.
Where did you grow up, Aaron?
I grew up in a town called San Ramon in the San Francisco Bay Area. It was little more laid back than where I live now, which is in Boston, but they’re both fantastic places to live.
What did you study in school, and why?
For my undergrad studies, I went to Tufts University where I studied Political Science with a focus on International Relations and Public Health. I chose those subjects because of my passion for reading as well as analysis and problem solving. Through my undergraduate studies, I realized I wanted to continue my education with respect to analysis, formulating solutions, and strategic planning which is why I chose to attend law school.
After that, it seemed like a logical progression to come to Rulesware.
To me, when you strip it down, a lawyer is a consultant with a legal specialty.
Ultimately a lawyer seeks to solve a client’s problem and has a duty to ensure the best possible outcome. And that’s exactly what Rulesware is about: we have a duty to our clients to collaborate with them in order to produce a solution that maximizes value and ensures a positive result. My education has prepared me very well for this situation and provided the solid foundation in research, analysis, and solutioning which is key to success for Rulesware and its clients. So in that way, it has been a logical progression.
Ultimately there’s nothing I want to do more than to work with people face in a collaborative manner in order to solve their issues. I love that I get to do that in a team setting, with such incredible teammates and support.
How did you first find out about Rulesware, and why did you decide to join?
I learned about Rulesware through my roommate who works for Pegasystems. He had the opportunity to work with Rulesware on a project, and couldn’t stop talking about what a great team he was working with. He had nothing but good things to say about the people he was working with—people such as Andy Cheng, David Bunge, Suleman Qureshi, and Steve Park. What really caught my interest was hearing about how Rulesware was like a family.
Hearing about this intelligent and tight knit company piqued my interest. Coming out of law school, as I was, I really didn’t want to get lost in a sea of people at a law firm. So I did some research on my own, and I had the opportunity to talk to people who worked there. It was great to hear his description of the company’s values and vision from the team members themselves, because the passion was clear – it wasn’t a script.
What was your first impression of Rulesware?
Family: that’s the first word that comes to my mind. It was everybody looking out for everybody else. I remember noticing that there was a team mentality in everyone I met. And when I went to El Salvador for training and had a chance to talk to [Rulesware CEO] Anthony Lee, I realized that it all came from him, the belief that we’re all succeeding together and learning together.
What struck me first was the knowledge sharing, and enthusiasm. The team members were so smart and well-spoken. And they were not only smart and experienced, but also enthusiastic about sharing all of that knowledge with others. It is not uncommon to hear at other companies or other industries that employees are not willing to take the time to invest in others, that it’s more like everyone looking out for themselves. But here, everyone really is looking to spread their knowledge to everyone else.
Was there anything that surprised you about working here?
I think I was surprised at first about how close everyone is, in spite of their geographical differences. Everyone seems to know everyone else’s skills, and they have these great relationships — even though they’re working together from different sides of the country.
Why do you think that closeness exists?
I think a lot of it is the people that we hire. Rulesware spends a lot of time trying to find the right sort of person—not just someone with good technical skills and book knowledge, but individuals with the right traits which are a passion to learn and the willingness to exist as part of a well-coordinated team.
For me the coaching program at Rulesware has helped to fuel the closeness. My coach is Eileen Williams with whom I have regular calls. And those conversations are not formulaic, in any way. I can tell that she’s genuinely interested in my success because her enthusiasm is so radiant.
Also you see emails being exchanged across project teams, where everyone is soliciting advice and information in order to disseminate knowledge so that we can provide the best services to clients. The communication and knowledge sharing across the company is non-stop
And the company Town Hall meetings have been important to me too. It’s been important to have an event like this that brings us all together, where we can all communicate and address our concerns and thoughts collectively.
What do you find most challenging about your job?
I guess for me, the technology aspect of the job has been the most challenging part. With my educational background, I don’t have the same background and knowledge as an individual with an Engineering or Computer Science degree. Learning a new tool, PRPC itself, has been a great challenge but fantastic opportunity as well. The training we have at Rulesware is phenomenal—there’s a true passion here for training and education. And that begins with the people who are part of the team. Suleman and JC Romero in El Salvador have been a huge help to me in developing my PRPC knowledge taking the time to explain concepts and their applications to our work. So, yes, it’s a challenge, but a positive one, that Rulesware is helping me overcome.
What do you find most rewarding about your job?
It’s the learning. I’ve always enjoyed challenging myself to learn new things. And here I get to expose myself to so much new knowledge, and so many different industries: we work with clients in financial services, health insurance, and we’re always expanding. So my biggest takeaway is learning—and meeting new people with different ideas. There’s been a huge amount of personal and professional growth.
I just started in February, and in eight months I’m shocked at how much I’ve taken away. I feel like I’ve learned more in 8 months than some people get to learn in years. I’m really happy I am to be part of this team.
Tell me about some of the people you’ve met while working at Rulesware.
I’ve met so many people. JC down in El Salvador who did my training is just so smart and friendly, with a real knack for explaining things to someone like me, who’s new to the field. And Rudy Samayoa down there too, is incredibly dedicated and passionate. On the U.S. side, I’ve had the chance to watch people like Steve Park and Marshall Shovein work, and watching them work, wow. Their command of the PRPC product, and the way they interact with clients, is simply something to aspire to. I’ve already mentioned Suleman, too: he’s an amazing resource for technical information—and is known and respected by people who work at Pega, and for other vendors too. And my team lead Kerry Hoisington, who has a wealth of knowledge across a variety of industries has been invaluable to me as well.. It’s been a real pleasure to meet people with such an array of experience and skills.
What do you do (in your spare time) when you’re not working with Rulesware?
I love watching football with friends on Sundays. That’s 16 weeks a year, 20 weeks, if things go well for my team which is the San Francisco 49ers. I also greatly enjoy reading for fun especially history books.
What might someone be surprised to know about you?
(Laughs.) I guess it’s the law school thing. So many people, friends and family included, ask how come a lawyer is working as a BPM consultant. My answer to them is that, I believe that my education was the perfect background for coming into this field and that I am very excited to be a part of the Rulesware team and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.