Meet Victor Semeniaka, August’s “Mentor in the Spotlight.” He is an Acceleration Program mentor in the IT Project Management track and sets a high bar for commitment and involvement in the Women Go Tech mentorship program.
Known for his impeccable dedication, Victor has taken on the challenge of mentoring three aspiring tech professionals from Lithuania, Ukraine, and Slovakia. He sets an excellent example of an engaged and supportive mentor by conducting 6 to 9 meetings with each mentee.
Can you briefly introduce yourself and share your background in the tech industry?
Looking back on my life, I can admire the fact that for more than 16 years, I’ve been working as a project manager for outsourcing and product companies.
Grateful to the knowledge and experience gathered from the IT companies, I was able to launch my own startup project in the US market that was featured in Forbes.
Nowadays, I work at Wargaming, which allows me to dive deep into the game industry and make connections with the entire world through authentic gaming experiences and joy.
What key skills or experiences do you believe are crucial for a successful career in the tech industry?
When looking for the desired success formula, I recommend to stop and think about your strengths. You are unique, and you can make changes.
Even if you are not working in the IT sector right now, focus on how you can apply your current experience and what you can bring to the table. The key skill is your belief in yourself. List your strengths, apply them to a desired company, keep working on them, and, if necessary, act based on feedback.
My personal list of skills for a successful manager is communication, leadership, and critical thinking.
Have you encountered any significant challenges or obstacles in your own career, and how did you overcome them?
I had two difficult pivots in my career. One was when I decided to start working on my own startup project and moved to the US.
And the second one occurred when the COVID-19 had happened, and the startup was closed. My aim to value people has helped me in both situations.
The startup was all about serving people in the travel industry. Pivot to Wargaming was also about multiplying value to people through the game industry. Project management is not only about processes and procedures but also about taking care of people and their needs.
Therefore, my aim to apply project management knowledge and focus on people answered Wargaming expectations, so I landed in the company.
What inspired you to become a mentor with Women Go Tech?
«We can’t help everyone, but everyone can help someone» (Ronald Reagan).
The passion to help people grow drives me to be a mentor to individuals. I must share what I know so that my knowledge makes sense and can make a positive difference in someone’s life.
What values or principles guide your mentoring philosophy?
«Add value to the people you value, you establish a culture that multiplies value to others» (John C. Maxwell)
We all live in a society of individuals. I believe that we can only establish a healthy chain of communication and relationships between us by assisting, serving, and valuing people.
Have you ever experienced self-doubt or imposter syndrome as a mentor? How did you overcome it?
There is a rule of successful communication to say things that you personally experienced. Of course, I was nervous before the first classes with mentees. It is like climbing on stage for the first time.
I try to focus on my knowledge and experience and share only these, avoiding saying and suggesting things I’ve never tried myself.
What is your one piece of advice for other mentors in the mentorship program?
Start with “Why”. We each have our own goals and expectations. We are here at Women Go Tech not for ourselves but for others. Therefore, “Why” is not about you but about other people’s goals.
What is your one piece of advice for the mentees?
Surround yourself with people smarter than you are. Always be open to learning and honing your skills and knowledge. The best way is to learn from the people around you.
Can you share a recent book, podcast, or resource that has positively impacted your professional growth?
The 16 Laws of Communication by John C. Maxwell
Feeling inspired to step into the mentorship spotlight? To join our mentorship program, sign up for the waiting list and be the first to know when our mentor selection process opens.
Let’s make an impact together!