A little background
One month in and things couldn't be any better. I wrote a first week post because of all the excitement behind the new job and now it's time to go a little deeper and write about all the events leading up to being hired at Knowbility.
How I got here
I was getting some food at the local pizza joint in my neighborhood on a pretty decent afternoon. I had just done the interviews and felt okay about them with the good folks at Knowbility, so I decided to treat myself to a pizza. Who doesn't?
Standing in line and waiting to order (masked, of course) and I got the email. Now if you have followed my search that I have documented a bit, you'll know it has been a long process. A defeating, debilitating process that beat me down pretty good. Rejection after rejection, over the phone, over email, being ghosted. By any and all means it seemed.
I started sweating. I had applied at a couple places that focused on accessibility and knew it was a great fit for me, but who was I a great fit for? Anyone? I was mired in depression, self-doubt, imposter syndrome. I applied for roles I knew I wasn't going to get anyway. I just wanted something to stick.
So I look at my phone and of course, instantly, the doom and gloom set in.
Oh, another rejection email has come in. The typical, 'While your resume was impressive, we don't think you;re a good fit for _________. Thank you for applying.' Is this another email like that? Do they have a link attached that will tell me how to appply for future roles like some companies do? How about a link to how to apply for roles like I am someone right out of high school?
A hundred thoughts ran through my head. Then, my defiant side kicked in.
Open it. Read it. You'll know after the first line of the email if they want you or not.
Well, usually the process was me reading who the email is from, panic ensuing, then the rejection. This time was a little different for some reason. I glanced at the sender, in this case, someone from Knowbility, and I read the subject line involuntarily.
Mar 31 Knowbility Offer Letter of Employment
I got to say, I "bricked" in my pants figuratively. I had to contain myself from fist-pumping and jumping up and down, screaming and celebrating. I maintained my composure, acted as if nothing had happened, got my food, went home and then I completely came unglued and went bonkers. Jumping, fist-pumping, celebrating, even dancing at age fifty, yeah I did it. I earned it.
We finally did it. Wow.
My brain, who likes to play a lot of practical jokes on me, actually decided to take a vacation. No more second guessing. No more telling me things that weren't true. No more self-doubt or self-deprecation. Pack your bags and take some time off.
Where the rubber meets the road
First week or so was onboarding and getting used to how things are done. Forms to fill out naturally, meeting the team and some of my colleagues. All that first week stuff you do at a new job. Or in my case, a new career.
The people are great, friendly, and welcoming. My team is made up of some terrific people who are smart and talented. I worked with a colleague who is very patient with my first week jitters and oversights and we worked on a project, audited a site in no time flat. I'm getting the process more and more each day and the Accessibility Services Team is phenomenal in their support and help.
As I moved forward I got another project to audit and have one that we just started that I am teaming up again with. Auditing sites for accessibility issues so that companies and entities can make their sites more accessible. I am here for that.
What do you do?
I audit websites for accessibility issues with automatic and manual testing and file those issues in Jira and then send that off for review and eventually a report handed off to the client on recommended changes. No coding. It's a bit of a refreshing break. My title is Accessibility & Training Specialist. I don't do any training right now, however.
There is also a lot of learning. How the workflow is, how the team does audits, how they do other things also like Masterclasses, webinars, and online events. Having to learn Jira has been the most challenging thing, it's not an easy job. It's a fun and challenging career for me.
Where do I go from here?
One month in and I couldn't be any happier. My short-term goal is reach the 6-month mark and get good feedback and remarks from the team and the company. I've finally broken into the accessibility space twenty-two years and over 2,200 resumes later, after my professional journey started in 1999. Forty-one years after I first touched a computer and knew this is what I wanted to do for a living in some capacity in 1980 at age nine.
Long-term? I am trying not to think that far down the road because the landscape of employment can change in the blink of an eye in tech. I hope that I am with Knowbility for awhile. I said I'd like to close out my career in tech here, I hope I can, if I can't then I hope I can continue on in the accessibility space and who knows where or when or if that will happen.
Right now though? One month in? I couldn't be any happier to have the past behind me and a good-looking future ahead of me.