In February 2021, I started a new role as Developer Advocate here at IBM. Prior to this, I had worked as traditional software developer and this new role was HUGE departure from what I was used to. I want to share a bit about my experience and what I have learned and experienced along the way.
Just to give you some perspective, here is a quick snapshot of the past few months for me. It's been an absolute whirlwind. It's been an absolute blessing and I can't believe how much has happened and how incredible the journey has been so far.
Beyond anything I could have imagined!
- Started new role as IBM Developer Advocate
- Joined Dev.to and Released First Blog
- Co-hosted First Webinar
- First Blog with 1000+ Views
- Hosted First Webinar Solo
- Second Blog with 1000+ Views
- Released 6th Video on Youtube
- Visited Raleigh-Durham, NC for the first time and signed a lease (Planned move from Baton Rouge, LA)
- Two Blogs reach 3000+ Views
- One-year anniversary of being married (Your boy is a newlywed)
- Made 13-hour drive (over two days) from Baton Rouge to Durham, NC
- Published 15th blog to Dev.to
July/August/September 2021 (All these months felt like one month 😅)
- Hosted and/or Co-Hosted 8th Webinar on Crowdcast
- Two Blogs surpassed 6000+ views mark
- One blog featured in weekly "must-reads" list on Dev.to
- Had second wedding with close family (Me and my wife were unable to have a ceremony with family when we originally got married because of COVID)
- Talk Proposal Accepted and will be Speaker at DevRelCon2021! (Will be announcing details soon on my Twitter and LinkedIn 😁)
As you might be able to see, a lot has really happened in last 6+ months since I started as a Developer Advocate back in February 2021.
The biggest things I have really taken from my time as a Developer Advocate and working in the Developer Relations realm, is that being yourself is key. For most of my career, I have tried to be as "inoffensive" in all that I do. Because of cultural fears, societal fears, and any fear you could imagine bleeding over in to my career journey, I was always holding back. I never tried to be "too creative", or "too honest" or "too myself" because I feared the backlash I would receive (some fears coming from unreasonable expectations and other coming from lessons learned and experiences in the workplace). But Developer Advocacy has allowed me to tap into my true self.
It's so strange to say, but this is the most "Me" I have ever been in my professional career. All of my hobbies, passions, skills, and experiences have really come to bear in this role.
Imagine this! I have used my audio editing/recording, video editing, game development, writing, presentation and developments skills all in this ONE role! I feel that through my time as a developer Advocate I have been able to tap into parts of me I have been hoping to bring to the table in the workplace for years.
The most amazing part of it all, is that all these skills that I have been blessed enough to gain over the years are being used to assist others in their career journey! I'm able to convey knowledge, share life lessons, and fundamentally help developers and those looking to grow their skills everyday.
And as you read this, I hope it inspires you to take chances and go after your aspirations. You never know where you'll land and where in your career journey that you'll begin to feel home.
In many ways, I don't know what the next years of my career journey will look like, but I do feel that Developer Advocacy is the first step of many that will allow me to accomplish the dreams I aspire to.
As always, Thank you for reading my blog!
And before I go, Let me leave you with a quote from the American Pianist and luminary, Thelonious Monk, that inspires me to be my most authentic self each day:
Thanks to all my IBM team and everyone who has encouraged me and inspired me on my journey so far. I couldn't have possibly made it this far with out you all pouring into me. I hope to make you all proud!
Onwards and Upwards My Friends!
Still can't believe I drove this Mega-truck + my car halfway across the country. 😲 This is from halfway through the journey.
Can't believe it! We finally got married (again) yall! Some blessed to share this time with friends and family in spite of the times.
Learn about Red Hat and What it's all about! Fun Times!
Red Hat OpenShift 1001: What is Red Hat OpenShift and Why Does it Matter?
A webinar that shares how you can connect React to IBM Cloudant NoSQL DB
React and Databasing: Basics of IBM Cloudant NoSQL DB
Dad Jokes and Containers
From Amateur to Professional
Participated in GMTK 2021 with good friend and IBMer Kyle. An absolute blast! Here is the game we made:
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Cover Image: Stock Image provided by TheSplitFace, from Pond5
Quote Image: Provided by AZQoutes.com