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Tip For The Day: Participating In A Hackathon May Be The Best Thing For Your Career

When speaking about a career change or boosting your career, some things that are quite effective are least consider, one of such is a hackathon. As time goes on, the divide between tech and other professionals continue to blur as more and more non-tech professionals are now interested in attending “techy” events. Usually, hackathons bring a broad group of people together to solve a problem and to bring their ideas to the table where it can be heard.

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A hackathon brings together technical professionals into teams for one or more days to create something new or solve a tricky problem in a unique, innovative manner. Interestingly, one of the top global innovative company Facebook used hackathons to develop a lot of functionalities for the app that still exists today. In the film “The Social Network” which depicts the birth of Facebook, much of the early days of the social media company were marked by informal hackathons. These hackathons developed Facebook’s “like” button, “chat”, “Timeline”, “tagging in comments” functionalities would not exist.

Hackathon is a tool for corporate innovation. It brings a wide range of benefits to business and industries as well as individuals, both professionals and students. No matter how good you are at what you do, a hackathon event is always an opportunity to learn. Here are some highlighted benefits of participating in a hackathon:

  • Endorse your skills and learn new ones:

Hackathons allow you to stretch yourself in ways you may not have been used to. Skills like pitching, public speaking, communication skills, teamwork among others are validated and learnt at a hackathon event.

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  • Stand out in the wide tech community
  • Improve your CV
  • Work on interesting tricky problems
  • Meet new people:

Hackathons provide visibility for your personality and skills in ways a random pitch to a company HR or CEO may not be effective. Some people have found jobs and platforms through hackathons.

  • Helps you get involved and understand how ideas move from concept to action

Most hackathons are focused on one core concept and teams are judged on their ability to transform this concept into a working prototype or deliverable action. For those that only work at one stage of the product lifestyle in their day jobs, hackathons are a great way to get involved and understand every stage – from design to deployment.

Hackathons have risen as an absolute hunting grounds for organizations seeking to employ top tech talent. They are being considered more appealing than traditional job fairs, career gatherings and interviews, as companies can send their engineers to a hackathon event and get a first-hand glimpse at potential candidates and their expertise.

So, the next time you see a hackathon opportunity sign up before you talk yourself out of it. Next week, I will share with you how to prepare for a hackathon event.

I’ll leave you with a gem by Oprah Winfrey:

Do the one thing you think you cannot do. Fail at it. Try again. Do better the second time. The only people who never tumble are those who never mount the high wire. This is your moment.  Own it.

– Oprah Winfrey

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Aanuoluwapo Olajide

Aanuoluwapo Olajide is a freelance writer who believes that words are fundamental blocks and are the force of life and death. She is a tech enthusiast, fashion designer and a lover of words.

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