Have you ever felt that the 9 ~ 5 office job wasn't right for you? You're not the only one. On Thursday, July 8th, Le Wagon was joined by two Alumni to talk about their "Transition from Corporate to Tech".
Web Design Freelancer Former VP of Investments at HWE, Inc.
After beginning her corporate career in New York and LA, Gini had always dreamed of exploring an ‘Option B’. In 2019, she quit her 9-to-5 job and started exploring entrepreneurship in tech.
Partner, Dynamic Cycle; Former Alibaba International Business Consultant
Lizzy has been an entrepreneur since 2017. Inspired by her corporate experience, she discovered business opportunities in the tech field. She is now a partner of her own digital agency leading a team of 8.
Over the course of the discussion, our guests talked about their own experiences transitioning into tech, what they're doing now, and even answered a few questions from the audience.
What's the difference between working with a team and working as an entrepreneur?
Gini: Time management and setting your own priorities is very important. As an entrepreneur you are the only one holding yourself accountable, you don't have a boss. When you work in a corporate environment, you have KPIs and clear tasks to complete. But as an entrepreneur, you have to find clients and plan for yourself.
Lizzy: KPIs were important when I worked for Alibaba, I had to help my company to achieve their mission. Working for myself, required me to set up my own mission. I have to be more clear about what I want and confident in the ways about which to get it.
How has Le Wagon helped you on this journey from Corporate to Tech?
Lizzy: During the 9-weeks bootcamp I really started from zero to build my own product, and it was tough. The take-aways for me were that I was able to learn to solve problems and manage my own time, which are two important skills to have as an entrepreneur. The technical skills I learned in Le Wagon now allow me to better serve my clients, build their own website and improve their user experience.
How did you get your first client?
Lizzy: I leveraged my current network. My business partner and I had a previous connection whom we knew their website was suffering from high turnover rate. We suggested that we run a campaign on their site to attract new users and keep those users on the platform. The connection agreed and we got our first client! The key was leveraging our current network, finding a problem that a connection had, and providing a solution for that client.
After Le Wagon's 9-week bootcamp, can you build a product by yourself?
Gini: That's a good question. After the nine-week program, I can build a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) and use that to test the market, but I don't think I could build something that scales to tens of thousands of users. Once I've used the MVP to test my product idea, get validation, and (potentially) funding, I would then hire someone to take my idea and scale it to support that larger number of users. But after doing the program, I am now able to speak the language and communicate with that technical person about the product specifications and understand any problems that they may encounter along the way.
What Le Wagon taught me is to "Test Cheaply". In retrospect, it was a great idea not to have an agency build my prototype for 20,000 EUR. Instead, being able to build my own prototype quickly and cheaply allows me to test the market before investing too much time and energy.