Episode 187 – Stay Curious Try Everything and Get Involved in the Community with Arlene Andrews
Arlene Andrews is a self-guided learner who has moved into the Quality Advocate section of the tech world with Lightning Fox.
In this episode Phil and Arlene discuss the importance of continual learning, why you should do due diligence on a company before agreeing to join them and how the current diversity trend is impacting the way the tech industry works.
(4.10) TOP CAREER TIP
Be curious and interested in everything. The more you know the easier it is to find interesting projects and people to work with.
(5.16) WORST CAREER MOMENT
A start-up Arlene worked for is now being investigated for major fraud. The fraud took place around the time she left.
The experience has taught her to be a little bit more cynical and to carry out more due diligence before accepting new positions or projects.
(6.33) CAREER HIGHLIGHT
Working on a group project with the CodingBlocks Slack folks is currently Arlene’s career highlight. The idea came from the community and the CodingBlocks team decided to make it a reality.
It is a large scale ongoing project that will help people across the world. Arlene is enjoying being part of something that is bigger than herself. It is enabling her to explore new tech and get over her imposter syndrome.
(8.14) THE FUTURE OF CAREERS IN I.T
The fact that people from all fields are now able to get involved in the IT industry is an exciting trend. It means that people are now able to make tech their 2nd career. Arlene is self-educated, yet has still been able to have a successful IT career.
Having people from different backgrounds involved in the industry is helping companies to see things from a different perspective. As a result, they are able to serve more people efficiently.
(10.20) THE REVEAL
What first attracted you to a career in I.T.? – At the time that Arlene was introduced to computing, things were not going the way she wanted. So, being able to get her VIC 20 computer to do what she told it was an utter delight.
What’s the best career advice you received? – If something catches your interest, find out more and try using what you learn.
What’s the worst career advice you received? – When Arlene entered college, she was told to become a secretary and get a job with a company she could stay with for life. These days, following that sort of path is no longer necessary, for anyone.
What would you do if you started your career now? – Arlene jokes that she would have started her IT career 20 years earlier.
What are your current career objectives? – This year, she is due to speak at a couple of conferences and is working on growing her blog.
What’s your number one non-technical skill? Short story telling has taught Arlene how to engage her audience in fun yet effective ways.
How do you keep your own career energized? – Giving back to the community keeps Arlene engaged and energized. She spends a lot of time on the developer focused slacks tracking down answers for people’s questions.
What do you do away from technology? – Arlene enjoys writing, knitting and she tries to walk. But, the thing she enjoys most is being out with people seeing how they use and enjoy tech.
(18.00) FINAL CAREER TIP
Stay curious. Keep doing what you are doing, but be sure to expand to cover all of the bases and be ready for the future.
(4.12) – Arlene – “Be interested in everything.”
(11.52) – Arlene – “Just try it.”
(12.48) – Arlene – “Don’t get locked into one way of looking at how to do things”
(14.14) – Arlene – “Start your IT career young and start safely.”
(17.59) – Arlene – “Stay curious and expand your knowledge to cover all of the bases.”
ABOUT THE HOST – PHIL BURGESS
Phil Burgess is an independent IT consultant who has spent the last 20 years helping organisations to design, develop and implement software solutions. Phil has always had an interest in helping others to develop and advance their careers. And in 2017 Phil started the I.T. Career Energizer podcast to try to help as many people as possible to learn from the career advice and experiences of those that have been, and still are, on that same career journey.
CONTACT THE HOST – PHIL BURGESS
Phil can be contacted through the following Social Media platforms:
Join the I.T. Career Energizer Community in Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/groups/ITCareerEnergizer
ABOUT THE GUEST – ARLENE ANDREWS
Arlene is a self-guided learner who has moved into the Quality Advocate section of the tech world with Lightning Fox.
Having previously worked in a wide range of business operational roles she is now able to leverage her experiences of supporting customers in her new role. She is also a fan of learning and has a passion for connecting people to resources that will foster improvements.
CONTACT THE GUEST – ARLENE ANDREWS
Arlene Andrews can be contacted through the following Social Media platforms: