Lisa Gumerman on her HealthSherpa journey thus far, what stands out about our internal work culture, how to be successful here, and a day in the life!
HealthSherpa strongly believes in creating inclusive, equitable spaces that build trust, respect, and a sense of belonging that are critical to our culture and work. We’re excited to feature our colleagues and hear more about their experiences at HealthSherpa, from their first touchpoints all the way up to their tenure and growth. In this post, hear from Engineering Manager Lisa Gumerman about her career growth since joining HealthSherpa, the culture of continuous learning, and more.
What are you most proud of in your career at HealthSherpa?
When I joined in September 2020, we didn’t include off-exchange plans in the HealthSherpa Marketplace. This Open Enrollment Period, the Marketplace includes off-exchange plans from seven insurance carriers. Like with any software project, we had a lot of bugs at first. It was pretty nerve-wracking knowing those bugs can affect someone’s access to health insurance, but we launched four carriers just in the last few months, and they all went super smoothly. It’s been impressive to see my team take myriad requirements and make something stable and extensible. Taking a project from infancy to a full-blown, solid offering is pretty incredible.
What is your favorite thing about the culture at HealthSherpa?
This is going to sound odd, but: that it’s okay to not know all the answers, and that it’s okay to reach out for help. Especially in engineering, it can sometimes feel like a personal failure to not know all of the information you need in order to do your job. In a fairly complicated domain like healthcare, it’s particularly hard to know everything. But realistically you just can’t – you’re always learning. No matter your level, it is safe and even expected to ask and answer questions.
In your experience, what do you think might make someone successful at HealthSherpa?
Above everything else: initiative. HealthSherpa is fairly unique in that it truly rewards you for taking initiative. I joined as a senior engineer, moved into management, and recently got another promotion. HealthSherpa is growing rapidly and there are a lot of opportunities to make your mark if you reach out and seize them.
What does your daily routine look like?
Every day feels different, but the routine is roughly the same. I’m awful about doing the “check Slack before I get out of bed” thing, but it’s one of the things that helps get me out of it – otherwise I’d lie around and cuddle my dogs all day. I try to avoid scheduling any meetings till around 10 am, to give myself time to catch up on messages, review pull requests, and generally make sure I have my wits about me. Then, I sync with my product manager, attend a standup with our broader product/engineering/design team, meet other engineering leaders, and hold 1:1s with my team. In the afternoon, I either pair with my engineers and other stakeholders, or have time to focus on my own work – whether it’s on the people/project management front or the occasional contribution to the codebase.
What’s something you’re passionate about outside of work?
My most notable passion outside of work is my skincare obsession – I’m the founder/chief admin of a 70k+ member Facebook group and have a blog I try to publish on a weekly basis. Turns out I enjoy every part of the skincare blogger process: researching products, buying them, organizing them in my personal product backlog, opening them, using them, emptying them, and writing reviews about them. I’ve even been known to send coworkers skincare at various points, and doing sheet masks together is definitely on the docket for our next onsite.
Want to work with Lisa and the rest of our phenomenal team? Click here to explore current openings and hear from more teammates at HealthSherpa!
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