Inspired by other posts of this kind I decided to write my own Gratitude Resume. As a concept Gratitude Resume shows how you acquired your professional status through the help of others. We are all standing on the shoulders of the giants and sometimes those giants may be oblivious of their contribution towards our success. Also, I think that gratitude itself is still undervalued. In this article, I want to show by example how anyone can express it.
Grzegorz Bugiel that mentored me during my apprenticeship at Wolters Kluwer and helped me develop professionally. He is also a great open-minded personality, so we keep in touch regarding various topics. With Grzegorz I learned how to properly debug applications, how to read the specifications and, most importantly, he let me grow in the fields I was interested in at the time.
Arkadiusz Kołodziejski, another colleague from Wolters Kluwer, introduced me to Intel. The most important lessons from my work there were:
- You don’t need to know every single detail of a system you are working on. If you are surrounded by competent personnel it suffices to delegate tasks to appropriate experts.
- Bureaucracy is evil. Later on, I learned that it is also necessary.
2010 and 2014
Grzegorz Borowiak. Also met at Wolters Kluwer. In 2010 he encouraged me to make a cameo appearance in one of his movies (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0EkB4zKpSvU). Turned out, I had appropriate hair for the role. It wasn’t for my acting skills. In 2014 he persuaded me to join ADVA Optical Networking. Here I learned that it is hard to operate with no processes and my dislike for bureaucracy turned into interest.
Wojciech Król from Controlled Collapse and Clicks trusted me enough to let me organize a gig in Gdańsk. Suffice it to say I knew nothing about organizing concerts, promotion, budgeting, etc. I also had no idea what prices are right for the venue or for printing, neither how to coordinate the work of several people. Several, because Emilia Mikulska, Adrian Ostrowski, and Przemysław Majewski somehow also trusted me in this venture and decided to help me. Thus was born http://kompresor.art.pl, first as an informal organization, then as a foundation until it was dissolved in late 2017. Beautiful venture I hope to resurrect someday!
Jakub Zalewski. He quickly realized the potential of my side project and encouraged higher management to let me work on it full-time. I believe this was the point that started my interest in what eventually came up to be Efficiency Hacking. Seeing both sides of processes and bureaucracy I started looking into finding flaws and time-consuming stages of a process and streamlining those that could save time for a whole team (or company).
2013 and 2016
Przemysław Majewski. Yet another Wolters Kluwer alumni, briefly mentioned already. He explained to me in 2013 his idea of building his own company to manage diabetes with the help of AI. I wasn’t sure back then. I lacked the courage and I lacked the skills. He asked me again to join his company DLabs in 2016. This time to do a job I had no experience with but had some notions about. I believe that in a short time I grew much quicker than in any other company so far.
Maciej Karpicz. And here’s the person that actually encouraged my growth at DLabs. He let me manage customer relationships as a Product Owner and fail miserably at it at first. The customer came out very satisfied at the end, though the company suffered severe losses. My head did not roll. I believe trust played a role here.
Ines Avdić-Zekić. There’s no point in hiding that I’m a sucker for “Hey, I think your GitHub profile looks very nice”. Ines approached me with a similar line and introduced me to Toptal. I gave it a try and landed among Toptal experts. Great decision!
Ofir Nachmani was my first client through Toptal. He was looking for freelancers to write for IAmOnDemand. Though I had no technical articles in English that I could show, he decided to give me a chance. This is how I realized how I love writing. I had been doing this stuff on and off again since I was 13, I guess, but with Ofir I was able not only to reignite my passion but also to get paid for it.
Zack M Fleischman, another client via Toptal, took me on board in late 2017. I’ve been writing code for most of my life. I had this impression in my head that I pretty much know how to write readable code. Zack has shown me how deeply wrong I had been. The first feature I implemented was technically sound. Nonetheless, the first implementation took only around a third of the overall time. I spend the rest rewriting the code to make it read better. The difference was stunning and I have been trying to keep up with his guidelines ever since.
A busy year with lots of changes. First, my gratitude goes towards Vlad Miller who sent me a job recommendation through Toptal. In the beginning, I wasn’t sure if it would be a fit. Later on, I realized it was one of the best opportunities I could have imagined. This opportunity was working with Paweł Michalski. Working with Paweł for around 5 months was a great experience. I learned so much in this short time I was really amazed! Secondly, I’d like to show my gratitude to those who answered my call for an apprentice: Bartosz Pankowski and Olgierd'd Kasprowicz. With them, I tried the role of a mentor and a coach and I cannot say I entirely succeeded. This gave me valuable information on how to improve. Finally, I’d like to thank the Medium editors that accepted me to their publications: Steve Campbell, freeCodeCamp, Hackernoon, Pelin Goksoy of The Startup, Jessica Jungton.
The quest for rediscovery was a theme for this year. First of all, credit goes to Marcin Młyński and Magdalena Eichler who trusted me enough to let me start my teaching career. Then, there was Scott Smith, Ryan Hansen, Jessi Cummings, and Melissa MacDonald with whom I was able to try a different teaching medium on Pluralsight. Shriram Shekhar believed in my writing skills enough to offer me a book deal and Daniel Bean asked me to publish a newsletter on LinkedIn (coming soon). Karina Rojek believed in the Idea Squash format which turned into a recurring event with lots of great dialog with the local creative community. I’d also like to thank Sylwia Fait who designed both my new web page as well as the slide template. Special mention also goes to Grzegorz Kupczyk who helped to establish and improve the Bit Better Book Club.
To say this year was crazy is an understatement. Fortunately, it was also an opportunity for growth. The biggest thank you goes to Anastasia Shch who agreed to guide me through marketing and service design. Thanks to her, I was able to release, promote, and sell Songcorder. She also helped me get back on track with regular newsletter schedule and made decisions regarding the book club. I’m certain that without her help I’d be stuck overthinking.
Most of the time
Finally, I cannot state how much I am grateful to my partner, Emilia Mikulska, who has always supported me in my decisions. Even if they seemed utterly stupid (“Let’s blow some money trying to make a European tour for an Australian band, this sounds like fun!”). This and her patience with me constantly changing ideas helped me survive some rough moments I had in my life.