This version: 2020-12-01
What am I up to right
What was I up to back then?
This was my
/now page. It was written with two main goals mind:
- To answer the prompt:
Think of what you’d tell a friend you hadn’t seen in a year.
- To provide focus, clarity and public accountability on my goals.
This edition of
/now is a bit on the long side, as my first - future ones should be smaller!
What's new in my life?
🏠 I've left London for Birmingham
Having been in London since September 2017, I left in March 2020 - just before the first national lockdown in England. I basically took a look at my small rented London room, and decided that it would be pretty miserable to work remotely from there.
So, I did a classic 'boomerang' and moved back into my parents' home in (greater) Birmingham.
It's been pretty comfortable - odd being back with them for the longest period of time since legal adulthood, but my standard of living has certainly been good.
🔚 I quit my job mid-pandemic to take a 'GAP year'
Quitting job in a pandemic seems odd, but I did it!
I'd started as a Software Engineering Coach at WhiteHat back in August 2019, and made a lot of great memories through the work - but I knew in May that I wanted to leave.
As I quit, my plan was to take a year of trying out various projects, like a gap year.
You can read more about my decision here - in brief, it came down to looking for more Growth, Autonomy and Purpose (conveniently also forming the 'GAP year' acronym!).
🌱 I joined a great seed-stage startup
I joined Academy as Programme Lead - exiting my 'gap year', but in keeping with the GAP themes:
Growth: a company with incredible growth prospects
It's not every day that you can join the founding team of a company with such high calibre in founder and investors.
- Academy's CEO is Ash, ex-Chief People Officer at The Hut Group (London's biggest ever tech IPO)
- Academy's seed round is being led by LocalGlobe (one of Europe's top seed investors)
Autonomy: joining at a stage to really shape things
As a seed-stage startup, there's lots that is still getting built out. This means that I get the ability to shape things pretty significantly.
Purpose: solving problems that I really care about
It's an opportunity to focus on problems I've been thinking about a lot:
- How can we empower people to have control over their future?
- How can we increase diversity and inclusion in tech?
- How can we build strong communities of learning and growth?
What am I focusing on?
Here are some questions that I'm thinking about and working on:
How do you support and accelerate diverse talent in tech?
This is a question that runs through lots of things I'm doing:
- Programme Lead at Academy: building a new generation of leaders in tech
- Teacher Training at Code Your Future: coding courses for refugees and asylum seekers
- Coding Instructor at Black Codher: coding course for Black women
How do we get more people from tech working on D&I?
There are lots of great organisations working on D&I in tech that deserve support.
What if we could mobilise greater numbers of people in tech to support these organisations?
(I'm currently working on something for this - please email me if it's of interest!)
How can I use my expertise to help even more?
Not many people sit across tech, education, startups and D&I in the way that I do.
I'm exploring what I can do to use this to help others with my expertise:
- open-source course building?
- value-add angel investing?
- public writing and thinking?