10 years is a milestone where you stop to count all the things you are proud of and thankful for. In our case, we’re most proud of our colleagues. Some of our colleagues are with us since the foundation of the company, others joined the fun a little bit down the road. It is exciting to see their careers evolve over the years together with the company. In this article (the first in a mini-series) we share a few of the Qubiz team members’ career stories.
Simina -Assuming operational roles
Simina joined Qubiz in 2010 as a senior .NET developer. Since the start of 2018, she is a delivery manager. In the seven years in between, she faced ups and downs, had different positions and even maternity leave. Let’s hear from her how it all happened.
Your career path at Qubiz had a few turns. Do you remember them all?
Let’s see: I was hired in 2010 to be a senior developer on a project and to mentor junior colleagues. The next year I had an opportunity to be the Scrum Master of a team of 4 developers. Since I had the technical background and also have been practiced Scrum for a while, I was glad to fulfill the role. After a while, I joined a bigger team as a senior developer and Scrum Master. In 2013, when Qubiz started a new major project, I was entrusted with the lead developer and Scrum master roles. As the team grew, I had been concentrating only on project management duties. 11 wonderful months on maternity leave followed, after which I joined a new project as team lead. Gradually, I took over the delivery manager’s responsibilities as well. Currently, I am the delivery manager for 4 of our projects, and I mentor our Scrum masters.
What helped you grow into the new roles you took?
In my case, going outside of my comfort zone was the single best decision. I promised myself that I won’t say no to opportunities.
It was hard, but it was what I needed to keep developing. Another thing that helped me was looking at what my peers were doing, and adapting it to my projects. I grew into the role as I was doing it. Overcoming misconceptions also contributed to who I am today. I learned to ignore the impediments, and focus on the solutions. I understood that sometimes I have to take the situation as it is, not as I’d like it to be.
What responsibilities came with the delivery manager role?
One thing I like about this role is that I can make a difference in several teams. I conduct the operational part of the interviews and I make decisions regarding the composition of the teams. Holding Scrum training sessions for the Qubiz team overall is also one of my duties.
Why did you make a shift from the developer (technical) roles to an operational role?
It was something that happened very naturally. I like to work with people, I enjoy seeing them grow and I’m happy to contribute to their professional development. As a delivery manager, I also encounter problems challenges that bring out the best of me. I like to brainstorm ideas, to work directly with our clients to identify to most viable solutions, to understand businesses from different industries.
Peter – From intern to junior to senior
We met Peter in 2014 during the Spring Internship. His performance over the 6-week program spoke for itself. After the internship, he was hired as a junior developer and joined one of our longest-running projects. At first, he shadowed the senior developers, as he gained more and more experience and confidence. Now, after more than 4 years, he is a senior developer. Let’s see how does he remember his journey:
Peter, who guided you during your first steps as a software developer?
It’s safe to say that I learned from everybody that works on the same project as me, but the senior developers were more involved. I learned pretty much everything from them: they helped me with both technical questions and the way of working on a software project.
Then your development didn’t just happen by accident…
Not at all, it was very intentional. My career manager advised me about setting realistic but challenging career goals and helped me stay on track. It was pretty clear to me that my ambitions are met with support. One of my goals was to get Microsoft certifications, as they are an objective measurement of my knowledge. I’m glad that I obtained three certifications, and I have my eyes on further certifications. Also,
it was very encouraging that they have confidence in me, and rewarded my progress with more challenging, complex, and interesting tasks.
What are the extra responsibilities that come with a senior role?
Even though I’m viewed as a senior, there’s always so much more to learn! But to answer your question, I think the main difference between a senior and a junior or mid-level developer is that the former takes responsibility for others’ work as well. I pay attention to my junior colleagues’ work and I help them whenever I can. When someone new joins our project, I help him with knowledge transfer. Also, I contribute to the recruiting process as a technical interviewer and I enjoy mentoring the interns.
What’s the next step for you?
When I started working at Qubiz, my five-year target was to become a senior developer. Now my goal is to just become a better developer. I like to get my hands dirty in a project, so being a developer suits me best. Additionally, I’m looking forward to opportunities to share my technical knowledge through internal workshops.