Why should you transition into tech?
I didn’t think about getting into tech when I first got out of school.
I didn’t even think about it in my first few months of job hunting!
I was just extremely frustrated because I’ve gone through job description after job description, interview after interview. In the end,I was never able to find a place that fit all my needs AND allowed me to grow everyday. Something just didn’t feel right.
It was only when I researched “top companies to work for” that I found that majority of those companies were in tech. And that only tech was able to give me the job satisfaction, financial benefits, lifestyle wants, and mobility that I needed to be happy. It was either that, or I needed to start my own business!
I wouldn’t trade anything in the world - being in tech gave me so much to live for, that’s why I want the same for you. I’ve researched everything I could get about tech to give you an idea of how these jobs and companies are like broken down to 3 parts: Job, Lifestyle, Career
We spend more time at our jobs more than we spend with our families. The most important thing we can do for ourselves is get into to a company and job we love waking up for.
PART 1: THE JOB
Sense of Purpose
Tech companies have achieved the greatest innovations in the past two decades. And It’s pretty amazing that these companies are solving the world’s biggest problems by holding true to their simple mission statements and leveraging the “smart creatives” of the world.
Google talks about this with 10X thinking and organizing the world’s information, Facebook talks about bringing the world closer together by building a community, Salesforce talks about helping companies connect with their customers in a new way.
Even smaller startups like Squarespace strive to “empower people with creative ideas to succeed."
The sense of purpose is there and you can feel the passion and drive from every employee
I wanted an environment similar to when I was doing business consulting projects in college - working in a team, solving a problem, and divvying up work towards a larger goal.
Tech companies normally have a flatter structure with teams of around 8-10 and smaller teams of 2-4 based on your role. You may be in the same function and location, sharing the same targets with the 10 coworkers. Within the 10 coworkers, you may also be working with specifically 2-4 people on a set client, project, or product.
Of course, there are also individual sales roles within tech companies where you have your own targets to hit. While that’s the case, you still have a business leader with wider team goals.
Most importantly, if something happens in your personal life with your children, spouse, or family - your team is there for you, ready to cover your work. This happened to my colleague who needed a 3-month sabbatical to learn about product management. This also happened to my colleague who had complications with his new born children for 3 months.
That’s why I love tech, you’re never alone and you always feel involved with the wider business - whether that’s with the founders/CEO in annual conferences or senior executives in few hundred people offsites.
I was earning 6-figures by the age of 24. I have to say.. it was a GREAT feeling.
Not only was I able to manage large businesses and be innovative, I was earning money that a lot of my peers wasn’t able to earn. These salaries are achievable even with smaller tech startups as long as you’re willing to negotiate.
I’m not even including other perks like referral bonuses of ~$4,000-$5,000 when you refer a new hire, yearly raises, fun competitions and cash awards, relocation bonuses, commissions, etc.
The Role and Transfers
Nobody likes a role that’s mundane and tedious. The great thing about tech is your role is fairly flexible and generally shaped by what the business needs, your strengths compared to your teammates/partner, and certain passion projects you may want to take on.
I’ve never once felt “pigeon-holed” into an “A-level job.” In fact, I manage 9-figure businesses, work on projects in Diversity and Inclusion, and drive passion projects for my clients and teammates that were not required in my job description.
This helps me to continually grow everyday. And there hasn’t been a day I haven’t learned something new. Tech is also a much faster pace. So three months in the job can feel like you’ve accomplished things that would take a year to do so in other industries.
Promotions and Bonuses
Many traditional companies have rules about tenure when they look at promotions. You have to be in a certain position or job for 2-4 years before they promote you.
Tech companies don’t have that. They look at your successes, achievements, and abilities to lead, collaborate, as well as transform the business to promote you.
I’ve gotten promoted 2 times in 2 years before just because I was in a tech company. If there’s anything I’ve learned about our generation that we really like, we like to think that age does not actually matter, it’s the work that really counts.
Tech companies support that!
PART 2: Lifestyle
What’s Annual Leave?
Work from home, unlimited vacation time, flexible working hours, Fridays off, you name it! Every tech company is different but generally because the business is largely digital, a lot of teammates can work from home or wherever they need to be without losing momentum on their business.
I’ve traveled around the world with my family and had the luxury of working from home. When I was working I learned to be extremely efficient and communicative. When I wasn’t working, I had the luxury of getting quality time with family and friends.
It’s also nice when your high salary can support this lifestyle.
In the end, tech companies value the results that you bring as an employee for the client and also for the company. As you can see, this flexible policy on annual leave or “work from home” truly demonstrate that.
Tech companies have the best insurance and plans I’ve ever seen - with great 401K retirement programs, health insurance, spouse and family coverage, as well as dental and optical coverage.
Tech companies know that they are the ones who benefit the most by having happy and healthy employees.
I’ve never once felt like my well-being wasn’t taken care of. Nor was I scared of not being able to care for my family. Materinity leave is usually around 4-6 months whilst paternity leave extended to about 3 months. Right now, this is about 2-4 months longer than normal companies!
In addition, most often than not, the tech companies have education support or reimbursements. If you wanted to get an MBA or take courses throughout the year, the companies usually subsidize a large portion of it. Sometimes, it is fully covered if you are able to stay in the company for the following 2 years (varies).
Free massages, gyms, nap rooms, ping pong tables, free lunches, you name it!
These are just the few perks that you can get from being in tech companies. Because tech companies focus on the results that you can bring, and data does show that good perks can help employee retention, they make sure to build the best environment for you to work in!
When I have free food at work, instead of taking 2 hour lunches I either spend 30 minutes networking with new colleagues or spend 15 minutes eating at my desk because I have something urgent to do. Either way, it’s beneficial for both the company and me!
When I have a gym and nap room, I feel more in touch with my values - having a work life balance. In the end, I feel more energized to be at work.
PART 3: Career
Travelling Around the World
I’ve gotten the opportunity to travel around the world while I’ve worked at Google for the past 4 years. These were all work trips that I often extended as personal trips for the weekend or worked from home during the week so that I could explore more of the cities!
Places I’ve travelled to through work:
During my job in Hong Kong: Bangkok Thailand, London, Singapore, Hangzhou China, Shenzhen China, Shanghai, Chicago, Macau
During my job in Chicago*: New York City, Mountain View California, San Francisco, Columbus Ohio, Detroit Michigan, Burmingham Michigan, Los Angeles.
*I travelled to 10+ cities while I worked from home as well
Since the cross country and team collaboration is so strong, and there are always various events and opportunities to service clients, you get to travel more in tech companies than any other companies I’ve seen.
Opportunities to relocate are huge! I’ve seen people from US move to Asia and do really well, even become managing directors of certain offices in Asia. I’ve personally relocated from Hong Kong to Chicago so that I could get more experience in other cultures as well as work on businesses that were 10X larger than what I managed in Hong Kong.
It’s definitely difficult if you have visa issues. I personally had to wait and work from Hong Kong for 4 months before I could move and it was very challenging for my team in the U.S. to wait for that.
However, most tech companies have immigration lawyers that they work with, some even provide sponsorships for green cards after.*
The transition period during my relocation was when I truly learned that my company really valued me as an individual. Not only did they support me fully without me spending my own money out of pocket to pay, they also waited for me during the 4 months to move, even though there were 50 other U.S. Candidates who interviewed for the same position in the U.S.
Starting a Business
A lot of people want to start their own businesses after being in tech. I am also on the same boat!
Prior to moving to the United States from Hong Kong, I reached out to my previous manager to get some advice.
“For me at Google, every move was about gaining new experiences, both work and personal related. I want to build a global brand with my own business and create something special. Working in different markets and different cultures, managing various teams and industries, exposing myself to big vs small offices/teams/products, and having great managers to learn from has given me a decent platform to achieve this.
Starting your business is tough, you are constantly overwhelmed and have to wear so many different hats, and I feel by working in so many offices that Google provided me with the right mindset and outlook to adapt and adjust to life as an entrepreneur.”
As a 10-year Googler, he truly took advantage of being able to start a business at a tech company in two ways:
#1 By experiencing different cultures around the world moving from Australia to New York to Dubai and Hong Kong to start a global business himself
#2 By starting your own business throughout your career in the company, as almost all tech companies allow you to do
You can do this too!
Since I’ve started working in tech, I get new messages on LinkedIn every week to explore new job opportunities. Friends, family, even clients have tried to approach me to move to their companies as well.
It’s amazing how one position can accelerate your growth in the job market. Tech companies are the forefront of innovation. In the past ten years, tech companies have certainly topped the ranks as 10 of the most profitable companies in the world even though they’ve been around for less than 50 years.
In the end, there’s a certain way the tech companies operate that seem exclusive. No matter what it is, a person who has been in a tech company is always sought after - even if it means transitioning to a traditional company, a startup, or another tech company!
NOW YOU CAN DO THIS TOO!
Book a FREE one-hour session me
1. What type of career environment you actually want with a free “ideal goal assessment” and whether tech is right for you
2. The ins and outs of transitioning into the tech industry
3. The one biggest mistake you’re making based on a customized review of your current approach
4. How to shorten your transition time frame from sending out 100+ emails in 3-6 months to strategically getting your first tech interview in 2 weeks
In the end of the call, we can learn more about whether we could be a good fit together.
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