OpenTable’s CTO is in San Francisco

by Paul Becker
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OpenTable’s CTO is in San Francisco

Joseph Essas can keep living in the beautiful Los Angeles while he works as OpenTable`s CTO. He was hired from EHarmony, a dating site, to be the CTO of this now famous restaurant reservation service. The CEO of OpenTable told Mr. Essas that things will work out for the company over time, and that the team behind the firm will make things happen. Mr. Essas had to leave behind his kids and wife when he lived in San Francisco so that he could commute to his job day in and day out. But he persuaded the firm to just cut his commute.

Mr. Essas told his firm’s executives that he could hire developers in Los Angeles easier than in San Francisco because he had an extensive network of contacts. In fact, he happened to have worked with many companies in the region in executive roles. He opened his engineering office for his firm in 2012 in Hollywood, but most of the team was living in San Francisco. This was an unusual role for an executive in the tech industry these days too. Some leaders of the tech industry said that they could not recall a setup such as this one.

The Los Angeles team has around 50 members and is growing quickly as they work on the consumer-oriented app and on data processing tasks. But he has also to oversee a lot of workers in Britain, India, Australia and San Francisco. This is a tough job for any executive out there, but Mr. Essas has the chance of making a difference for his company these days. He likes to work with engineers from all over the world, as they give the company a different perspective at all times. He also wants to get as much feedback as he can from his subordinates, which is truly cool for him too. Mr. Essas also encourages his people to talk with restaurants` employees so they can get feedback on the app.

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