Episode 194 – Engage with the Tech Community Be Empathetic and Achieve More with Bert Jan Schrijver

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Phil’s guest on this episode of the IT Career Energizer podcast is Bert Jan Schrijver who is Chief Technical Officer at OpenValue in the Netherlands. He focuses on Java, Continuous Delivery and DevOps. And he is a Java Champion, JavaOneRockstar speaker and user group leader for the Dutch Java User Group.

He also loves to share his experiences by speaking at conferences, writing for the Dutch Java magazine and helping out Devoxx4Kids with teaching kids how to code.

In this episode Phil and Bert Jan Schrijver discuss how engaging with the tech community leads to more interesting career opportunities. They talk about how switching projects regularly enables you to achieve more and progress your career faster. Bert explains how to get the balance right, so you can find interesting, fun and engaging work.

 

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

(3.57) TOP CAREER TIP

Engage in tech communities. Doing this has really shaped Bert’s career. Every company he has worked with in the past 10 years is one he heard about via the community, while attending events.

In the podcast, Bert expands on the type of engagement that works best.

 

(5.39) WORST CAREER MOMENT

At one stage Bert found himself in real danger of burning out. He was working on a huge insurance project. When they got to the migration stage everyone had to work 13 hours a day, 7 days a week. Luckily, Bert realised he was close to burning out and falling sick. Fortunately, when he explained this to his then manager they were understanding and responded well.

The experience taught him the importance of maintaining a good work-life balance.

 

(8.13) CAREER HIGHLIGHT

Being recognized as a Java champion by the international Java community is Bert’s career highlight, so far. It was nice to be recognized as an expert. Plus, occasionally, potential clients have also heard about the award.

 

(9.54) THE FUTURE OF CAREERS IN I.T

The way the IT industry operates now means that one person can achieve a huge amount. Provided you have a broad enough set of skills, you can build products on your own that can literally change the world.

During the podcast, Bert explains how to leverage your knowledge to build great things fast. The method he outlines means you do not need access to a lot of cash to get started.

 

(12.12) THE REVEAL

What first attracted you to a career in I.T.? – Bert learned to programme on a Commodore 64, which he started playing with at the age of 7. So, for him, a career in IT was a natural progression.

What’s the best career advice you received? – Find a job where you can have fun. You will become far more successful, when you do.

What’s the worst career advice you received? – Don’t become a consultant, you will be bored. The opposite was true.

What would you do if you started your career now? – He would go into consulting earlier because you learn so much faster when you regularly switch between projects.

What are your current career objectives? – To make OpenValue the best Java shop in the world.

What’s your number one non-technical skill? – Public speaking. Through his speaking engagements, Bert has met a lot of amazing people.

How do you keep your own career energized? – Bert makes sure that he is always learning. He follows interesting people and stays involved with the tech community.

What do you do away from technology? – Away from tech, Bert’s focus is his family.

 

(17.18) FINAL CAREER TIP

Show interest in others and have empathy. When you are likeable and approachable, people want to work with you and you get stuff done together.

 

BEST MOMENTS

(3.57) – Bert – “Engaging with the tech community is the best way to learn and find interesting projects.”

(6.57) – Bert – “Keep a good balance between work and life. When you reach your mental capacity it is time to go home.”

(10.12) – Bert – “Once your skillset is broad enough you can build a product that will literally change the world.”

(12.50) – Bert – “Find a job that enables you to have fun, when you do success will follow.”

(14.06) – Bert – “You learn a lot faster if you regularly switch between projects.”

(17.18) – Bert – “Show interest in others and have empathy. When you truly connect with others, you achieve so much more.”

 

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:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/philtechcareer

LinkedIn: https://uk.linkedin.com/in/philburgess

Facebook: https://facebook.com/philtechcareer

Instagram: https://instagram.com/philtechcareer

Website: https://itcareerenergizer.com/contact

Phil is also reachable by email at [email protected] and via the podcast’s website, https://itcareerenergizer.com

Join the I.T. Career Energizer Community on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/groups/ITCareerEnergizer

 

ABOUT THE GUEST – BERT JAN SCHRIJVER

Bert Jan Schrijver is Chief Technical Officer at OpenValue in the Netherlands. He focuses on Java, Continuous Delivery and DevOps. And he is a Java Champion, JavaOneRockstar speaker and user group leader for the Dutch Java User Group.

He also loves to share his experiences by speaking at conferences, writing for the Dutch Java magazine and helping out Devoxx4Kids with teaching kids how to code.

 

CONTACT THE GUEST – BERT JAN SCHRIJVER

Bert Jan Schrijver can be contacted through the following Social Media platforms:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/bjschrijver

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/bjschrijver/

Website: https://openvalue.nl/

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