I’ve been interning at Haptik for almost 10 months, as a Frontend Engineering Intern working in the Platform team.
The journey has been full of learnings and ups, & downs, and has been one of the best experiences of my life so far. Through this blog, I want to share my experience and my insights on what makes Haptik one of the best startups to work with.
SPOILER: This post will be more journey centric and not a guide to how you can land an internship.
SimranJot Singh has been one of the people who continue to inspire my journey as an engineer and he’s been a great example of how hard work takes a person places. None of this would have been possible without him.
It’s OK to ask and be WRONG
When I had just joined, I was a pretty scared kid watching all these highly productive and experienced developers being Usain Bolt when it came to shipping code. All I could hear were terms which made no sense to me (Django, Celery, Message Queuing, webservers, Release pipeline, etc.) and I was bamboozled to my core.
My first mistake was trying to pull things off without errors. I wanted everything to be perfect, no bugs, no wrongly named variables – without having the experience to pull off any of it.
I was hesitant to ask my team to help me out with the most basic of problems I was facing (they might think they hired a chump who doesn’t know how to code 1+1=2). Gradually, my team members sensed my hesitation and they just came over to help me out. I consider myself to be very lucky that I had such amazing people around me who understood what I was going through and made me realize it is OK to not know everything and its OK to be wrong and to ask for help, as that’s a part of the growth process.
Till you don’t accept your own shortcomings and problems, no one can give you a solution to it.
Usually, whenever anyone starts off with their career in programming its specific to a single domain – that’s how you land a job in the first place. But now that you’ve already reached that stage, there’s no barrier that forces you to stick to your domain. As long as your work is delivered, you can play around with whatever you want for as long as you want, and that’s the silver lining very few people notice.
It’s fun to change swings once you get settled into the routine. Make sure you challenge yourself not just to perform better at what you already do but also explore things you’ve never done before, retrospect on your experiences and learn from them.
I initially joined as a Front-End Intern at Haptik but ended up working on Python Frameworks for my first month and went on to contribute to some of the fairly complex APIs written at Haptik during our platform upgradations. I explored computer vision, Backend, UI/UX a bit with the designers, usually brainstorming with them whenever a new feature’s design was being discussed, I hung out with the DevOps Engineers, solving some issues together, learning tricks and quietly understanding how to do things the DevOps way. Also, tried to touch the product side; trying new things was a lot of fun and kept the wheel rolling.
T.E.A.M. (Together Everyone Achieves More)
As surprising as it may sound, I was always considered as a core team member throughout my internship at Haptik (and never asked to bring coffee, contradicting the stereotype!) and I was always given the opportunity to contribute to ideas and voice my concerns. I would ask questions while brainstorming and one of the engineers of our team would help me understand how things work.
Whenever I had a concern regarding product, the Program Managers at Haptik would step in and explain how things work on their end and what’s the impact of the decision being taken and so on. If I’ve raised a concern, if it’s valid it’ll be taken into full consideration. If not, someone will explain to me why it’s not the best way to do things.
It is very important to trust your team members and make sure that they trust you. At the end of the day, the team is a family which runs together and has your back when things go south. Always respect and support the team. Never hesitate to ask for help, and always step up to help someone if you know you’ve got the right solution for a problem.
So this is my version of how things should be. Here are some thoughts you should try to keep with you, and which will help you to push through as they helped me in my rough patches:
- The world won’t die if you make a mistake. People might get angry, you might get a little roast, but think about it, it’s worth learning.
- If you do what you’re supposed to do on the day you don’t feel like doing it at all, make sure you reward yourself for it. No one knows the battles you’re fighting in your head better than you, reward yourself.
- While hustling is expected from you, don’t forget to take some moments and party.
It is not the mountain ahead of you that wears you out, it’s the pebble in your shoe — Muhammad Ali.
I hope my experiences help you with your journey. If you ever want to strike up a conversation feel free to reach out to me here and I’ll help you with everything I can. For more wisdom read SimranJot’s Blog here, he’s shared his valuable experiences which have helped me through my intern journey.
Do check out the Haptik careers page.