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My first year experience

Name: Wes Rhodes

 

 

Pronouns: He/Him
Role/Title: Consultant, Developer
Office Location: Atlanta
Home Location: Forest, VA
Describe your First Year Experience in one or two words: Collaborative Environment

I’d love to hear about your career journey. Can you talk about what led you here and your decision to join Thoughtworks?

 

I was a software engineer in a full-stack environment for four years.  What got to me here was how draining working on the same product for four years can be.  I wanted a change of pace, and when Thoughtworks approached me I was enamored by the thought of having my work cycle on a regular basis.  I was worried about burnout in my old job, but burnout doesn't really happen in a company that has a term contract. Outside of that I was really interested in having more of a mentorship basis in the code I worked on as opposed to previously just having one senior developer and a very limited growth path.

 

Ok take me back to your first day at Thoughtworks. Your first week. Your first month. How has your onboarding and First Year Experience differed from previous onboarding at other companies?

 

Onboarding with Thoughtworks was different from anything I've experienced in my career thus far.  I was in a cohort with people who weren't just developers; but business analysts,  senior tech leads, etc.  I actually felt that we were all in the same boat and working towards a similar goal as opposed to other companies I've worked for that made me feel like I was a junior and needed specific onboarding to get ready for the work ahead.  I was able to collaborate with people outside of my immediate role during onboarding to get an idea and scope of how all the roles at the company work together.  Outside of that, the first month was amazing.  I wasn't being micromanaged, I was being trusted to deliver what had been assigned to me and I was able to spend time researching approaches and optimizations to further both the project I was assigned to and my own development career.

 

What has been your favorite part of your Thoughtworks career to date? Any milestones? “Ah-ha” moments? 

 

The big thing about Thoughtworks for me is having a First Year Experience advisor.  This person is outside of your contract, but they are truly so enthusiastic to help you succeed.  My specific FYE advisor has connected with me on everything, my mental health, my career growth, and any questions I've had with the operations of Thoughtworks.  These people in the FYE advisory position are always available to help YOU succeed and it's such an amazing experience.  The only help I've had previously is with a direct manager, but now I have people within this company who just want me to succeed because it will help the company as a whole.

 

What advice would you give to someone who is starting their first day at Thoughtworks? 

 

On your first day just listen, and interact.  Thoughtworks is a VERY collaborative community.  The biggest thing you can do is to be open and vocal.  If you're happy, let people know; if you're unhappy, also let people know.  Everyone in this company is open, accepting, and receptive.  I still connect regularly with people within my cohort even though I don't work with them regularly.  The best thing you can do for yourself is to speak often, and self-advocate.  You know what's best for you.  It's a team effort, but if any gear on the team isn't operating at full capacity, everyone will be affected by it, and everyone wants you to succeed.