Ricardo got in touch with me because he was on a path to join the Software Engineering world. I had a very positive "prognosis" for him after our first meetup. He didn't have a big portfolio of polished hard assets yet. But he did have an active GitHub with projects, an AWS Developer Associate certification, and a whole bunch of "soft assets".
In my article about your hidden career assets, I describe soft assets (Motivation, Background, Activity, Personality, Communication, Luck) which anyone has to some degree apart from technical skill and portfolio projects. Let's see how it mapped out in Ricardo's case.
Ricardo was highly Motivated. He was bursting with energy when he talked about getting into DevOps or Cloud Engineering (or full-stack web development if anything else goes wrong). One of his big drivers was the ability to create more with the software superpowers.
One thing that made me confident about his endeavor was his engineering Background already. Having a degree and work experience in energy engineering definitely gives you some edge. I still was worried a bit that most established companies pay too much attention to official statuses (like a university degree, or "at least" a Bootcamp degree) and suggested to peek at potential bootcamps and some other things to boost his credibility.
Additionally, I wasn't sure if there would be enough options for DevOps junior positions, but I thought it was better to focus on this position for the moment, since "Cloud Engineers" are less of a popular terminology in job ads and web developer was more like a last resort idea anyway...
Apparently, there were ways to overcome those obstacles.
There's quite some Activity on the Ricardo/GitHub if you'd like to check it out. Exploring the Cloud and full-stack experiments is the leitmotif of this GitHub space. All of this was accompanied by an updated LinkedIn profile and well-designed portfolio pages including a blog to solidify his learnings. Lastly, Ricardo reached out to potential mentors and employers to gain additional visibility and get clear in his focus.
In the end, the open-minded Personality and very responsive clear-to-the-point Communication skills brought all of this home, I think.
Passing all the technical tests and interviews wasn't a cakewalk either, but all the projects and all the learning have now paid out. Finally, there were 2 offers from the last application offensive 🚀
I find this story particularly interesting because this was basically a one-man effort over the course of a year. We had just a few chats when he asked me for advice but it was enough to bring some clarity and, as he put it, "bring some momentum" into the whole undertaking.
Yes, I had some doubts regarding the degree situation and the job market but I was sure that victory was unavoidable by continuing to work on the hard assets and applying to companies. Being consistent in that, Ricardo forced his Luck rather earlier than later. Chapeau!
I think that there's a lot of potential to level up for him within the next 1-2 if he is willing to continue the grind. I'll be updating this story here or post a new one when the time has come, so keep tuned :)