Ask An Alum: Delaney Mackenzie, former Keystone Engagement Manager

KeystoneNext had the opportunity to sit down with Delaney Mackenzie, a recent Keystone alum who will lead a software engineering team at Jellyfish
April 29, 2022   /   3 Minute Read

We recently had the chance connect with KeystoneNext member, Delaney Mackenzie. After leaving Keystone in April, Delaney is next heading a software engineering team at the Boston-based company, Jellyfish. When asked about his time at Keystone, Delaney had multiple things to highlight, including his work on the Keystone Advanced Technology Systems (KATS) team. We know he’ll continue to Do Great Things in his new role!

Q: Where are you headed next?

I am going to lead a software engineering team at jellyfish. They have a platform that measures how software engineering and product development happen. This gets fed into tools that help engineering managers make better decisions.

Q: What objectives and opportunities are you looking forward to in your new role?

I’m really excited to dive back into hard software engineering problems. Amusingly, Jellyfish is a meta role, where I’m solving software problems that enable better solving of software engineering problems.

Q: How did your time and experience at Keystone help prepare you for your new role?

Speaking from the perspective of a Software Engineer at heart, Keystone provided opportunities to really push myself on being a better leader, communicator, and mentor. I’ve learned a lot about management communication while dealing with all sorts of messy, real-world challenges, both technical and organizational. It can be difficult to learn these skills when you’re in a pure software engineering track.

Q: What was your experience like working on the KATS team at Keystone?

The fun part of KATS is that you never know what kind of project is going to walk through the door. In a core technology role, there is often a narrower set of problems that you encounter, but while working as a member of the KATS team, it could really be any type of problem that you then need to figure out. I think this work helped me get more flexible in my approach to problem solving. Keystone also has a pervasive egalitarian culture and I think it’s important to recognize how valuable that is for the firm. The firm is very good about not letting senior people automatically have the floor when it comes to debates or opinions, instead they value everyone’s ideas. This leads to many meetings where you have greater diversity of thought injected into the conversation.

Q: What is your favorite memory from working at Keystone?

The 1-1s with all the people were always what I looked forward to in the week. The best was when we could walk to a coffee shop near the office, even better when Keystone paid for the coffee.

Q: What team was your favorite KATS hackathon winner and why?

The Pistachio Timekeepers! This was my Hackathon team, as part of the April 2022 KATS Offsite. The team worked on improving timekeeping methods at Keystone. I was proud that we were able to get some working prototypes done in a short timeframe.

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