Our New Leadership Program: Daniel’s Journey From Trainee To Leader

CodeYourFuture (CYF) trains people from underprivileged backgrounds in coding and employability skills, and then helps them find good jobs in the tech industry. We’re passionate about developing people’s technical skills, but we’re also very aware that soft skills like leadership, decision making, and people management are just as important for employment. 

Recently, we have created a new and unique program, called the Leadership program, which aims to equip people with the necessary leadership skills for future management roles.

We’re going to speak to Daniel, who currently has a place on the program, about his exciting journey with us so far. From how he first connected with CYF, to his role now, and where he hopes it will take him in the future. We’ll also take a look into the day to day duties of the role and the benefits of being on the leadership program with us.

Daniel (second left) is developing his leadership skills in the wonderful West Midlands community

Daniel’s Journey With Us Began As A trainee

Daniel’s journey with us is quite remarkable because he is a former trainee from our Software Development course. Prior to joining CYF as a trainee, Daniel had no coding experience. “My dad saw an advert in a local council,” says Daniel “and that’s how I first found out about the Software Development course.”

After graduating from the development course, Daniel landed a fantastic role at Capgemini as a Software Engineer. “Because of CYF, I’ve gone from nothing to having a full-time job which I love.” He then also began volunteering formally with us. “Trainees from the next cohort started coming to me for extra support and I would help them with their coursework. At first, I wanted to be a teaching assistant (TA) during classes but I was asked if I wanted to become a leader and join the new program. What’s great is that I see it from both sides now.” 

“I absolutely love CYF’s mission to help underrepresented backgrounds get into tech,” says Daniel “and based on everything they’ve done for me, I said yes to this opportunity straight away. I want to help out as much as I can.”

The leadership program is an opportunity to make a difference

“Many people want good jobs but don’t have access to the training they need to find meaningful work,” says Daniel “but CYF are working to provide that training.”

As a graduate, Daniel knows exactly what it’s like to be a trainee on the tech course. Learning how to code can be overwhelming and difficult at times, so it’s vital that trainees feel supported by volunteers. “I get approached by trainees now with questions and it’s great to be able to offer help. Trainees show a lot of gratitude. You really feel like you’re helping someone on their journey.”

Learn about yourself and develop your unique leadership style

The great thing about the program is that everyone has a unique leadership style and each style is encouraged and celebrated. It’s a chance to unearth your existing strengths, develop them, and use them to become a passionate and strong leader. What it means to lead can be expressed in different ways.

“Before I joined CYF as a trainee my confidence was really low. Being a leader has brought out different sides of me” says Daniel. “I get practice presenting, speaking with different people, and planning parts of our programs and classes.”

Becoming part of a diverse and inclusive community

For Daniel, the highlight of the community from day one is that it’s a friendly and supportive environment. “At CYF, you’re supported every step of the way. No one gets left behind and people go out of their way to make sure that never happens.”

“It’s a diverse and supportive global community,” says Daniel. “We have trainees and volunteers from all over the world. Everyone has different experiences and skills to bring.”

Gain responsibility at your own pace with CodeYourFuture

Developing as a leader on the leadership program is a process, you take gradual steps and gain responsibility when you feel ready. “I wasn’t thrown in at the deep end” explains Daniel “I work closely with regional leads who are very experienced in these tasks.”

Perhaps the best thing is that the program can be moulded to your own goals and progression. “This role is much more open than the technical roles” explains Daniel “it’s about facilitating sessions, managing time and people, and planning.” 

Since joining the program, Daniel has tried lots of new things. From developing the personal development syllabus to facilitating a class in a park.  “I’ve learnt so much and my roles have been varied. I’ve worked as part of the strategic team with German, the CEO of CYF. I’ve also worked with the Head of Innovation, Lilli, to improve the overall CYF program and how our leaders can improve.”

“Being part of CodeYourFuture has been the best experience of my life. Confidence is the number one thing I developed as a leader on the program. All I would say to those looking to join is simply do it” says Daniel. “Everyone wants you to succeed. Everyone is working together.”

Ready to Develop Your Leadership Skills With Us?

We hope you’re inspired by Daniel’s journey into tech and leadership. The program is an exciting opportunity to develop the skills necessary to progress in your career. Anyone can be a leader with us, as long as you have the motivation and are passionate about social impact organisations. 

You don’t need any technical knowledge or to have graduated from our programme to apply. You simply need to connect with CYF and volunteer in some way to be eligible for the program. You can offer your time as a Personal Development Buddy, Ambassador, or as a Teaching Assistant. This will allow you to become familiar with us as an organisation and understand our values, goals, and commitments on a deeper level. 

Are you interested in the leadership program and ready to unlock your leadership potential? If you can commit 5-7 hours per week for 6-12 months, learn more about the program and how you can register your interest here.