What It Feels Like to Work in Tech: The Journeys of Ineta and Monika

The tech industry is renowned for its fast-paced environment, constant innovation, and the unique paths individuals take to become part of it. Two inspiring stories from Adform employees, Ineta Leonavičiūtė and Monika Kaltenytė, highlight the diverse and often unexpected journeys into the world of technology. Their experiences underscore the importance of persistence, curiosity, and embracing challenges.

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Ineta: From Interior Design to Software Engineering

Ineta’s path to becoming a software engineer was anything but straightforward. After high school, she joined Vilnius University to study communications. However, after two years, she realized it wasn’t her passion. “Mom, Dad, I’m dropping out,” she announced. Her parents were understandably surprised, but Ineta was determined to find her true calling.

A New Direction

Her second attempt was at the Vilnius Academy of Arts, where she earned a degree in interior design. Despite her initial enthusiasm, she soon found that a career in interior design didn’t excite her either. “Holding my diploma, I realized that interior design wasn’t for me,” Ineta reflects.

Discovering Programming

Her breakthrough came unexpectedly while working in a support role at Adform. She discovered programming and decided to give it a try. Three years have passed since then without intentions to switch to another direction. Ineta found parallels between programming and interior design: both require a focus on the end user and creating products that are simple and user-friendly.

Words of Wisdom

“Whether you’re a programmer, a builder, or an electronics engineer, the title doesn’t matter as much as doing what you love,” says Ineta. She hopes her story inspires young women not to fear making mistakes and to explore different fields until they find their passion. “Remember, there are no dead ends in life – if one path misleads you, another one is always waiting.”

Monika: Embracing Challenges and Overcoming Doubts

Monika’s journey into the tech world began with a struggle. “In school, I excelled in most subjects except for one – informatics,” she admits. Despite taking extra classes, informatics felt like an unsolvable mystery. However, Monika’s love for challenges motivated her to push through. “If I’ve put so much effort into this subject, I could try just a little bit more and study IT.”

The Appeal of IT

Although Monika wasn’t initially passionate about programming, she sought a dynamic career that offered continuous learning. “IT seemed perfect – new technologies emerge daily, rapidly changing and shaping our future,” she explains.

Overcoming Doubts

Her parents suggested she study law, finance, or economics, wanting to protect her from the uncertainties of an IT career. Nevertheless, Monika pursued her goal, even though the transition from C++ to C# was challenging. “It wasn’t easy. I spent countless nights on university work, questioning my choice,” she recalls. Her determination led her to seek job opportunities early, landing an internship as a QA at the end of her first year.

The First Job

“I applied to many companies, admitting I didn’t know much yet but had exceptional motivation,” she says. This internship provided her with invaluable insights into the IT world. After six months as a quality assurance specialist, Monika felt ready for a new challenge. She joined a .NET academy, where top students had the opportunity to secure jobs. Her project, a website for creating challenges, was rated the best, leading to her first job as a software engineer.

Growing in the IT World

Since then, Monika has worked on various projects, from governmental systems to green tech and big data. The steep learning curve and supportive environment have been key motivators. “I’ve never felt my questions were dumb,” she says, grateful for her colleagues’ support. Now, as a software engineer at Adform, she works on mapping, aggregating, and processing data from around 80 sources, ensuring real-time data availability.

Advice for Aspiring Techies

“I’ve been at Adform for three years, and the constant challenges and learning opportunities keep it exciting,” Monika shares. “Being surrounded by smart colleagues from whom I learn new things daily is what I enjoy the most.” Her advice is simple yet powerful: “It’s okay to be afraid, but do it anyway.”

Don’t Fear the Unknown

Ineta and Monika’s journeys into tech highlight the importance of resilience, curiosity, and embracing new challenges. Their stories are a testament to the diverse paths that lead to a fulfilling career in technology. They serve as an inspiration for anyone, especially young women, considering a leap into the tech industry. Their message is clear: don’t fear the unknown; explore it, and you might find your true passion along the way.