It's not uncommon for people to discover their love of the tech industry whilst they're in the middle of a completely different career. Pivoting into tech is actually more common that you think.
We got to chat with Dominik, a former Customer Success Manager turned Ironhacker, who studied Web Development with Ironhack Amsterdam and realised his dream of becoming a Front-End Developer.
From Customer Success Manager to Front-End Developer
Tell us about your experience at Ironhack
It was intense for sure, to the point that I spent several weeks even coding in my dreams! But it was also great: my progress was immediately visible. Day by day, week by week, I was able to create things I wasn’t able to before. I went through the ups and downs of coding, the frustration and successes, together with the people and friends I met there and a tutor we could always rely on.
What did you do before doing the bootcamp?
I was a Customer/Partner Success Manager before. It’s a job which I mostly spent in meetings, listening to the customers’ needs and challenges and orchestrating our own internal departments to provide a fitting solution.
Why did you decide to make a career change?
As much as I enjoyed my previous job, along with my colleagues and management, ultimately I felt something missing from it. I enjoy creating things, be it drawings, stories, music or even games, and I found that my job didn’t include this aspect.
I just mentioned games: At one point I started tinkering with game engines as a hobby, out of curiosity. With that, I needed to learn about coding, and I was immediately hooked. I didn’t want to make games professionally, but I enjoyed the process of programming, and the problem solving that comes with it, so much that it became clear to me that this is the track I wanted to steer my career on.
Do you think having been a Customer Success Manager has helped you in the world of programming? How?
There is this idea that coding is mostly done in solitude, which really isn’t the case. It’s very important to know how to play together in a team and how to communicate well. These were also some of the focal points in my previous job and it helped me a lot to gain traction as fresh developer.
After graduating, you found a job. What would you highlight from your current company and position?
I would say that I found out that as a developer you might be more flexible than you realize. I worked on some projects that included tech stacks I never worked with before, sometimes even picking up a new program language along the way. And that’s the beauty of this profession for me: you always, always learn new things. Problems that seem initially insurmountable can be broken down into smaller problems and solved after all.
What advice would you give to those people who want to get started in the tech sector and are afraid of change?
My advice is to feel the waters first. Do a basic coding course, see if you enjoy it and really do write a few pieces of code on your own. If you enjoy doing it and you do see yourself doing this as a profession, then simply go for it. This is how I did it and I am happy that I followed my gut.