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My Journey Into Software Engineering

kkirby16
Updated on ・3 min read

For the last several years, I was doing sales and sales development work. That said, I never really felt I wanted sales or sales development to be the 'be all end all' for me. Instead I saw it more as a stepping stone. Thus, I recently grew to be no longer fulfilled with it.

I knew it was time for me to make a career change.

Doing software sales for the last couple years had given me some exposure to the work that software engineers do, peaking my interest and curiosity about it. In the software products I sold and the websites of their companies, I’d see imperfections I wanted to be able to change. I’d think of features often that would make the user’s experience easier or more efficient. I had all these ideas and I wanted to know how to implement them to both sharpen the image of the companies I worked for, as well as make a more positive impact on users and ultimately the world. This was a big reason behind why I wanted to look into software engineering.

Sales development for me was temporary, but the transferrable skills I gained from it are lasting and valuable to software engineering: some of these being fine-tuned communication skills, a growth mindset, coachability, perseverance through an 'emotional rollercoaster' environment, customer-focus, time and task management, and more.

I’ve also always had an inner feeling I wanted to do software engineering. I’ve always loved solving problems, loved technology, and the internet. I love typing and I can type 100+ wpm. Additionally, I know that my personality is an introverted, detail-oriented, and logical personality type. With in-depth research I have found that my specific personality type is one of the best fits for software engineering.

When I decided to quit my last sales development job, one of the people I immediately told that I was leaving was a coworker who helped me get the job via a referral. He was actually a software engineer and I told him I was quitting since I wanted to change careers. He said that we should grab lunch and he also asked what career I wanted to go into. I said I'd of course like to grab lunch, and the inner feelings mentioned above came out when I told him that software engineering was one of the most viable career options I was considering. He was excited to hear that and said he would give me all sorts of insight about software engineering. He also mentioned how the transition he made into software engineering was the best decision of his life. I felt like this moment and timing was meant to be.

He mentored me and encouraged me about software engineering and I had other software engineers coincidentally come into my life at that time, who did the same. It all felt as if it was meant to be happening for me at this time.

Additionally, in this journey I stumbled across an amazing video posted by one of the world's leading high performance coaches, who I follow on Instagram, where he said this: "Whatever your big goal is in life, whatever sets your soul on fire, whatever passion you have, recognize that that is a GIFT that you are meant to protect, to fulfill, and to manifest."

That quote stuck with me. When I read this, I knew it was time for me to jump into software engineering to follow that passion I feel for it. Ultimately, I decided to make the jump into the software engineering industry by joining Flatiron School.

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