How we converted an MBA to a kickass developer

Fun at Work April 14, 2014

From being yet another engineer+MBA to a kickass developer. Ashwin has truly come a long way.

Here’s the story of how Ashwin’s passion, hard work, & perseverance took him through our Software Apprenticeship programme. We’re really proud to have supported his journey and have him on our team.

Reproduced verbatim from Ashwin’s blog:

I joined Vacation Labs in the last week of November 2012. I started a software internship coming fresh out of, you heard me, an MBA (chuckles!). Yes I followed the herd and went in to do an MBA after a B.E. CSE (Isn’t it obvious. Everyone’s doing it…)

But my real passion for what I wanted to work on began when I started looking at investments specifically in startups. Now startups are BIG in “the valley”, and the startup scene is just about heating up in India, with Bangalore in the lead. So that’s when the third eye somewhere in my head opened up and I decided, this was it.

Ha! That was easy. I knew what I wanted. I wanted to do stuff. Write code…

But how do I get there??

Most startups have limited resources. Which means they prefer people who will immediately fill a position and be productive from the get go.

And I didn’t know zilch!

How do I crack this! I approached a few startups and described my predicament. I was hungry, I was passionate, but nobody wanted me…:(

Around this time I heard about Vacation Labs, an interesting start-up based out of Goa. I looked up the team, and a few desperate e-mails here and there

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(masked brilliantly with some MBA bullshitting :)), and I managed to get myself an internship, which was unpaid for the first month, and if I could manage it right, a small stipend for the next 3 months…

Hey what the hell.. I get to learn stuff right. Smooth sailing! I’ll be through this like a ninja!

Well not really….

My arse was on fire in the internship! Quite literally. I hadn’t written code in two years. I was out of touch with programming concepts, with Maths, I had pretty much forgotten all concepts about web technology (blame that on that stout boring lecturer who made the subject so drab!).

Most importantly, I HAD TO DO IT..There was no giving up. I was pushed through a steep curve, I questioned myself and wondered sometimes if I would ever do it. But I never gave up. Giving up was never an option (Why? Because that all knowing third eye told me so..Seriously??? You had to ask…)

I worked harder than I’d ever known. What I couldn’t make up with my lack of talent, I tried my best with just hard work. It was tough man..Words cannot describe it..Sometimes I saw office more than I saw home, for weeks.

I faced some terrible lows during the internship. Sometimes the pressure got to me. I would stonewall against random software issues spending hours, sometimes days to solve a simple problem.

But that paled in comparison to when it finally pieced together. To put my effort into perspective, I was able to pick up at least six different technologies and complete 2 client projects, all this in the course of 3 months!

Every project I completed made me look back in disbelief at what I’d achieved. My progress and transformation was the best high I’ve ever got.

Now I’m here, a full time developer at Vacation Labs, and a firm believer, that there is no substitute for hard work, and sheer perseverance.

To all the others out there like me who struggled for months on end to find the “right” job. 3 words make all the difference


The reason its difficult to find the right job is, BECAUSE its the right job. The reason IT IS the right job is, BECAUSE it challenges you.

You push your own limits. You question yourself and eventually learn that, YOU CAN DO IT.

If I had to go back in time and make a choice, for an easier job, I’d take this job all over again.

Why? Because my all knowing third eye told me so 😉

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