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💻 Break into tech with this 1 skill

90% of people don't realize this.

Leader's Lens by Jacob Espinoza, a Workweek Friend.

I’ve talked to hundreds of students. Some of them landed jobs in tech.

These students were trying to break into tech from a completely unrelated field. They were total beginners with no experience.

What made them successful?

Read their stories below - and discover what 1 skill they all have in common to help them succeed.

Psst: if you’re an aspiring product manager, this week’s sponsor will help you become a more effective manager and leader.


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Alexa: Data Analyst

Data Analyst Alexa

Alexa saw herself as a complete beginner when she started sharing her learning on Twitter.

“When I started out on Twitter, I actually wanted to be relatable with people like newbies,” she told me. “I wanted them to feel safe…and we can keep growing together.”

Now, she’s well-known in the data community. Many people look up to her as a mentor.

Eric: UX Designer

UX designer Eric

Eric started designing with his phone.

He told me it “was very awkward…I later realized everything I used in the design was rectangles instead of frames.”

But he didn’t let that stop his progress. Eric has a growth mindset - he said “at least I can measure a huge growth so far.”

Here’s another example.

Eric created a project for a challenge, but the deadline had passed. He shared it anyway, and many people saw and loved his work.

Now, he works as a Product Designer at IDS, and has shared his advice to hundreds of other design students.

Can you guess the skill that helped Alexa and Eric break into tech yet?

Read the next 2 stories for more hints 👀

Christiana: Product Manager

Product manager Christiana

Christiana is a mother who transitioned into Product Management from a completely different field.

She proactively sought resources to grow in her career:

  • Learning on EntryLevel.net

  • Watching YouTube videos

  • Connecting with strangers in Product Management on LinkedIn

Because Christiana didn’t know anyone in Product Management, she created her own opportunities.

She even provides a template for connecting with people on LinkedIn here: https://www.entrylevel.net/interviews/get-a-job-using-linkedin-christianas-story

Jennifer (that’s me!): Growth Marketer

Growth Marketer Jennifer

“I’m not a leader. I’m an introvert.”

That’s what I used to think.

Then, someone told me something that flipped my whole view on leadership.

“You’re a leader. A leader doesn’t just tell people what to do. They lead by example - helping others achieve what they want to do.”

This made me sign up for more opportunities I was interested in because I wanted to help. That’s how people came to know me. Because people knew me, I was invited to more opportunities and even spoke at some panelist events.

That’s what led me to land every job I’ve had - people think of me for opportunities because I show up.

(This didn’t just happen to me. I see consistent success for people who, like me, show up to help others.)

The skill: leadership


  • Are proactive. They find the resources themselves, then guide others to those resources (like Alexa did).

  • Shoot their shots. They have a growth mindset - even if they don’t meet ALL the job requirements or miss a challenge deadline, they still try their best til the very end (like Eric did).

  • Make an effort, even if it’s scary. Transitioning into tech from a completely unrelated field can be a lot of work, but leaders go above and beyond. Leaders do whatever they can to prioritize their goals and connect with strangers in their field (like Christiana did).

  • Help others. A good leader knows kindness pays dividends. Leaders seek ways to help others, which leads to many experiences and opportunities for their careers (like what happened with me).

Strong leadership skills are what companies look for, and how you can find career opportunities.

Not sure where to start?

Try integrating leadership abilities into your everyday habits. Here are some example habits you can start with: https://www.entrylevel.net/post/successful-job-seekers-have-these-10-habits

Leaders are proactive, shoot their shots, make an effort, and help others.

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