A little over a year ago, I was looking to change my life monumentally. I quit my job and decided to change my career path altogether. I had no idea at the time how much my bet would pay off.
Less than two years ago, I spent the majority of time on the phone with customers in a dead-end job where no one challenged me. I felt insignificant, and that I wasn’t living up to my true potential.
My career journey so far has been arduous and didn’t always make sense: I’ve worked as a bike messenger, a baker, and I’ve held many customer service positions.
Risk vs. Reward
At the time I quit my job, the risk felt tremendous: I had enrolled in a training program that–at that time–had never graduated any students, and I wanted to start a new career that I knew very little about.
My managers, family, and friends all questioned my reasoning–and some doubted I would be successful. I knew for the change I needed in my life, my goals would have to be huge.
With a lot of hard work and a little luck, after eight months of studying software engineering at Kenzie Academy, I was hired as an associate software engineer at Zylo.
I’m happy to say that the decision completely changed my life.
Now I feel empowered, valued, and I have the latitude to think more ambitiously. I feel like my work truly makes an impact on something more significant than myself.
Encouraging Personal Growth
I’m encouraged to grow personally every day, another of Zylo’s values. It was incredibly intimidating to start a job in a field you have never worked in, with only eight months of experience and knowledge, and faced with a vast and unfamiliar codebase.
While challenging, Zylo is fiercely committed to supporting growth: I am supported by my coworkers and managers, who challenge me and encourage me to take the time to learn new things.
Every day I can broaden my understanding, working on things I have never done. In only a few months, I now feel competent as an engineer. I also have opportunities to help mentor other new engineers, sharing what I have learned in this process.
Belonging, Beyond the Office
I could wax poetic about Zylo all day, but it’s a truly wondrous thing when each individual is a stakeholder in the success of the team and the company, fostering a culture of tenacity and strength. Furthermore, I can expand my impact on the company and community outside of my assumed duties.
Recently, Zylo committed to Pledge 1% of the company’s time, resources, and revenue to give back to the community. Commitments like this so early in our growth phase are what makes the culture here so unique: giving back and creating a positive, inclusive culture isn’t an afterthought at Zylo, it’s part of who we are.
When I recently approached Julie Barker, our VP of Talent, about beginning a sustainability initiative within the office as part of the Pledge 1%, she welcomed the idea with enthusiasm and support. I am thrilled to bring my passion for improving my environmental impact to the office and excited to see how this initiative will manifest with everyone involved. Together, we can do great things.
I’ve been able to take on numerous other opportunities to grow outside of my role, which has been incredibly valuable and helps me feel challenged. I enjoy the opportunities to share my experience and expose other people to technology.
Zylo will be sponsoring a booth at the Eureka! Exchange, part of the Indy Women in Tech Championship and we will be teaching 5th- and 6th-grade students how to code. I have also been a part of the High Alpha Blue Angels leadership committee, helping to share knowledge, inspire, and push conversations about diversity in tech.
I could never have imagined last year that my goals would lead me here. I knew my ambition would take me far, but having a nurturing place to grow makes all my hard work much more meaningful and helps me grow more abundantly. Zylo is a truly unique company that I feel very grateful to be a part of.