We continue telling about our amazing team members and their stories at Readdle. Serhii Tkatch, Web Development Team Lead at Fluix, shares his journey and pieces of advice that helped him get to the top.
Tell us about your background and how you started your career.
I didn’t have a formal education and switched to this field from another profession. What was crucial in my decision was the support of my wife, she was the one who believed in me all along!
Interestingly, at university, I was helping my groupmates optimize their work and prototyped different algorithms for this. Some of my work was related to ore refining from magnetic additives and they were patented, but now you can find them in open source.
How did you join Readdle? Any interesting facts?
It’s a funny story because I didn’t get into Readdle on my first attempt. When I was around 30 I tried to get into one of Readdle’s products as a web developer and it turned out to be Readdle’s B2B product Fluix. After the first failed attempt, I went on to work for a marketing agency. A couple of years in, I tried to get into a Fluix internship and failed yet again.
After some time, my third attempt was successful. My friend told me about the vacancy and it was at Fluix again. This time things got serious, I was interviewed by four people and it went on pretty long. To paint a picture, I had a bottle with 1.5 liters of water by my computer and it was gone 40 minutes into the interview, that’s how nervous I was. However, I successfully passed the interview and later on the onboarding.
Could you tell us more about your transition to the lead position? How did it happen?
Our team was growing and it was time to move up, so I was offered a place as Web Development Lead. Before this, Readdle organized different classes and workshops which significantly boosted my people skills. I went through a few seminars for managers and training in human psychology and communication skills.
The classes were exciting and once I started in my new position I could immediately use my skills in practice and had a foundation to rely on.
I’m grateful that the transition was slow and no one threw me into the water to “swim” on my own. My managers respected the fact that I was still new to this and may not know everything. I’m very happy that Readdle and my team invested their attention and nurtured me into the professional I am today, and I try to reflect this in my work.
Did you face any challenges during your transition? How did you overcome them?
The most challenging part for me was having more responsibility not just for my tasks but for the whole project. Sometimes, I was trying to control everything but, again, it’s important to ground yourself and don’t reach for things out of your control.
Also, it was a bit challenging to communicate with my peers from the manager’s perspective. However, I learned to trust my team’s professionalism and rely on their judgment when needed.
What do you find most fulfilling about your work?
What I’ve always liked about web development is the magic of creating something worthwhile almost out of nothing, just with your computer.
Aside from that, when I became a manager I found the most rewarding thing was to be able to witness the growth of each person on my team, call out their personal achievements, and highlight them. As a manager, it gives me great joy to provide a sense of accomplishment.
What advice would you give to someone who is starting their journey in Web Development?
- First of all, the most important mark of excellence in your work is your willingness to use your own interfaces. That’s how you know when you did a good job — when you sincerely enjoy using something you created.
- Also, If you can’t explain your work to QA — It’s not understandable enough and you should work on it. Brilliant things are simple.
- As you can see from my case, the path to what you want could be difficult and you should have persistence to keep trying.
- The best piece of advice I’ve been given to this day was from my former teammate. He said: “Look, here is your responsibility and that’s the responsibility of your manager. If you think you should be answering for everything, think again”.
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