The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
Everything in life that's worth having requires effort. In tech, it also requires convincing somebody you are good enough to take a chance on.
A few months ago, I pivoted from data into web development because I wanted to level up my software engineering skills and I found a company that was willing to help grow my career. I worked closely with a Senior Software Engineer building out a new microservices-based backend that would be replacing our Django monolith.
Instead of augmenting work with side projects and classes to round myself out, I threw everything I had into this project. I felt that creating a production system using software engineering best practices was the best move for my career. This proved to be prophetic as startup life offers few guarantees.
I got laid off in mid-March and had no choice but to scramble to find a new job. Fortunately all the work I did paid off.
This time around, interviews were a lot easier to come by. I had a few months of professional experience as a developer to augment my healthcare domain expertise. Ended up getting offers from two awesome companies. Took the one in healthcare and I'm starting my new gig after I get back from PyCon in mid-May.
Feeling very excited because the team is awesome and the CTO lives, eats, and breathes awesome tech culture. This is the third startup his team has followed him to. These kind of actions speak louder than job descriptions which promote a "fun" and "collaborative" work environment.
I really appreciate the opportunity I had at my last job, but it felt like a stepping stone. The company was in the healthcare industry, but they were more focused on marketing consumer goods versus improving healthcare outcomes. But this job... this is the job I envisioned all those years ago when I decided to leave trading to do something that matters.
I finally found it.
My career change is officially complete.