Kickstarting your Tech career: From zero to hero

by Atinuke Naomi
kickstarting your tech career

 

Moving from zero to hero in the tech world isn’t an easy transition and going by the testimonies of people who switched careers into tech or started from scratch, it is easy to conclude that the tech world is a lucrative one. As lucrative as it is, it is fuelled by other factors which include time, energy, money, growth sessions and every other factors necessary for career and personal development.

You might be wondering why personal development is included, this is because not all the skills needed are Tech-related skills. Yes, Technical skills are important because they are needed to advance in your career as a tech person and so are soft skills. They are not of technical origin but are embedded into our personality. Unlike Technical skills that can be taught, soft skills are oftentimes not teachable. Imagine teaching someone how to be angry, how feasible is that?

Some of these skills are:

  • Communication
  • Creativity
  • Collaboration
  • Critical thinking
  • Perseverance
  • Empathy
  • Organisation
  • Resourcefulness
  • Curiosity
  • Accountability
  • Flexibility etc.

From zero to hero

While keeping the above mentioned skills in mind and working to improve on your weaknesses, picking a niche is important too. This is where the journey starts. Below are few tips to help.

Research

This is the first step.  Utilize search engines, Google is a good one. Start by searching for areas in tech you can build a career on. Note them down and ask how to kickstart a career in them, research on them separately.

Connect with people

Reach out to people in any tech field you pick an interest in. You might be wondering where you can find them, LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are good social media platforms to network with brilliant minds in any career field. When sending them a message, introduce yourself and go straight to the point. This is to reduce your chances of being ignored. Ensure your message tone is polite.

 

Decide for yourself

Now that you have researched and probably gotten whatever information from people in different fields, it is left to you to decide for yourself. You have to check out skills that come naturally to you, areas you want to explore.

Surf the internet for learning resources

After making your decision, you would need to take your first step into the field by surfing for materials to learn. You should make good use of Google and YouTube in this case. Search for beginner-friendly courses on any of the two platforms. Some courses are free while some are paid. Most beginner-friendly courses are free as they are meant to introduce you to the area you want to specialise in. For this phase, you might need to learn how to use some applications to make your learning easier, you can always find help online. Search engines and social media platforms have made things easy. Sometimes, scholarship are awarded by some of these Tech bodies; Ingressive4good, DataCamp, SheCodeAfrica, ALX-T, AltSchool, etc. You just need to be updated to have access to them.

Learn and stay consistent

This is regarded as the most tedious by learners. It is a different thing to plan to do and actually doing it. This is where discipline comes in, you have to discipline yourself to show up always. Learn, keep learning, watch videos, ask questions. Working on projects too is a part of learning, this helps you practice what you have learnt and helps you build your portfolio.

Build your portfolio

Projects you have work on shouldn’t be hidden, you should show the world what you have learnt. How do you achieve this? Tech has made a lot of things easy that the solution to most problems is on the internet. Looking for projects to work on? Check the internet. Searching for where to showcase your finished project?  Check the internet. You can build your portfolio online. Below are few websites to build your portfolio.

Behance – https://www.behance.net/

Dribbble – https://dribbble.com/

Wix – https://www.wix.com/

Adobe – https://portfolio.adobe.com/

Portfoliobox – https://www.portfoliobox.net/

In conclusion, it is okay to discover a field isn’t for you after venturing into it. Trial and error is a part of life and if you are lucky enough to get it right on your first trial, congratulations!

 

 

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