Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in training and education but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Austeja Ogenskiene, Co-Founder of devMentor, located in Kaunas, Lithuania.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
DevMentor is a practice-oriented coding course that helps the wannabes to become junior developers and land their first job finally. Our clients are people who might have some basics in coding (attended some boot camp, a coding school, or followed youtube tutorials), but they lack the practical knowledge and experience to deliver actual features and write real production code. So we help them to attain those skills and help them to get hired.
Tell us about yourself
Three years ago, I decided to learn to code and get a developer job. I didn't have any contacts or connections in IT back then, so I went to a popular coding school. I took a full-stack course, and I also took a few online courses at www.scrimba.com and codegym.cc. Those schools were great; they gave me the basics. But it wasn't enough to get a proper web developer job or even an unpaid internship.
I went to my teacher at one of the schools and asked him to help me out. He created an application, split it into tiny little tasks, and I started coding. When I had questions, he helped me out by providing hints and links to documentation. After three months of this type of learning, I managed to land a job at one of the best custom software development companies. Together with my teacher, we thought that the method he created, and the one I tested, worked really well and was super effective. We started working on the program development, tested on new students, and invited more developers to join us and be mentors. This is how devMentor was born. Now we are three people - me, Rūtenis, and Vitalijus; we have new mentors joining us every week.
The best motivation for me is to develop a proper mentoring system that actually helps people to change their careers and become web developers. There are many great people out there who could code if they received proper guidance. We truly want to be that source for those people and help them switch to IT and finally do what they love.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment is seeing people turning their lives around and finally getting their first internship or job as a web developer. It's amazing to see their journey from the ones who can't write a function to finally nailing technical interviews and getting hired.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
The hardest thing is not to get lost among many little tiny tasks and responsibilities and stay focused on the tasks that truly bring value. As a business owner and CEO, I am responsible and accountable to my partners and my team. I know I have to deliver no matter what. This brings quite a lot of stress. On the other hand, this is the most interesting thing I have ever done.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Before you launch a product, grow an audience that listens to what you have to say.
- Focus on your clients and customers and what makes THEM happy. Don't listen to people who won't buy from you anyway.
- Reach out to people who you like, and ask for help/contacts/connections.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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