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The Fastest Way to Get Promoted as an Engineer

We all want to live up to our potential, grow in our career, and do the best work of our lives. Getting promoted at work not only proves that we have advanced our skills but also shows that the hard work we put in is being recognized and appreciated. As I was going through my bi-annual performance review with my manager, I learned that I missed that one thing that could have helped me grow faster and led to a promotion. The fastest way to get promoted at work — act as if you have already been promoted. If you… Continue reading

Knowing what needs to be done

This post is part of the Two Years at Gusto: Everything But Code series. The remaining parts are: Goal-driven is a losing mindset. Everything is an evolving process. Dealing with unknowns and humans in the software world When you are most helpless, you are most empowered As I get older I'm learning it's less about "work for someone" vs "work for yourself" And more about "waiting to be told what to do" vs "knowing what needs to be done" And, weirdly, that you can end up either way regardless of whether you work for someone or work for yourself — aj… Continue reading

Goal-driven is a losing mindset. Everything is an evolving process.

This post is part of the Two Years at Gusto: Everything But Code series. The remaining parts are: Dealing with unknowns and humans in the software world Knowing what needs to be done When you are most helpless, you are most empowered Goal-driven is a losing mindset. I’m goal-driven. I tend to laser focus on a single goal and relentlessly go after it. This strategy served me well in school. I got everything I wanted. But it didn’t work so well outside of school. The longer I worked, the more I realized being goal-driven is a losing mindset. School is different from the… Continue reading

Two Years at Gusto: Everything But Code

Hard to believe it has been two years since I joined Gusto. At the same time, given how much has happened and how much I have learned, it’s also hard to believe it has only been two years. In this post, I want to share four most valuable lessons I learned in the past six months since my last bi-annually retrospect. (Past bi-annually retrospects: 6-month, one-year, and 18-month) Goal-driven is a losing mindset. It’s better to think of everything as an evolving process. Dealing with unknowns and humans in the software world. Knowing what needs to be done. When you are… Continue reading

Dealing with unknowns and humans in the software world

This post is part of the Two Years at Gusto: Everything But Code series. The remaining parts are: Goal-driven is a losing mindset. Everything is an evolving process. Knowing what needs to be done When you are most helpless, you are most empowered I have been working on the Payments Engineering team for about eight months. Since the projects we work on are either backend-heavy or mostly used by internal teams, engineers on the team wear product manager hats a lot. That means I have lots of opportunities to work with different stakeholders to figure out project requirements, prioritize projects and… Continue reading

When you are most helpless, you are most empowered

This post is part of the Two Years at Gusto: Everything But Code series. The remaining parts are: Goal-driven is a losing mindset. Everything is an evolving process. Dealing with unknowns and humans in the software world Knowing what needs to be done There are times when we need help from others. There are also times when help become crutches. Asking for help and consulting more experienced colleagues is an excellent way to grow quickly as an engineer. But if we get used to relying on senior colleagues, their help can become crutches and get into our way of growth. When… Continue reading

How to Contribute to Elixir: A Step-by-Step Guide

Contributing to Elixir is a great way to learn the language and get involved in the community. You might think only rockstar developers can contribute to a language. That’s the assumption I had. But my experience in contributing to Elixir proved me wrong. I learned that there are many ways to contribute and there’s a place for everyone. You don’t have to be a rockstar to contribute. If anything, contributing to Elixir will help you become a rockstar. Contributing to Elixir was my first attempt at working on open source projects. I was intimidated in the beginning. However, the process… Continue reading

First Impression of Elixir, from a Rubyist’s Perspective

If you’re a Rubyist, you might have heard of Elixir: the new functional language with Ruby-like syntax created by José Valim, who used to be on the Rails core team. If you’re curious about it and wondering if you should give it a try, this post is for you! After playing with Elixir for about a month, I decided to write a post summarizing my thoughts. This post covers the following: Why I didn’t try Elixir earlier; Nitpicking at object-oriented programming and Rails; What changed my mind and made me give Elixir a try; Materials I used to learn Elixir;… Continue reading