This time last year I was just getting settled into my new job. Figuring out how the Silver studio operated and how everyone liked their teas and coffees.

I remember feeling extremely nervous. I had no idea what to expect. Having previously worked as a barista in Starbucks – while studying programming in the evenings – I had been used to angry customers who weren’t happy with their ‘soya extra hot half decaf caramel macchiato’ creation, to now working with a close group of people who have rapidly become friends. They work seamlessly together to produce an outstanding quality and level of work. I was also so excited to be doing something I really enjoyed. Plus I would get to learn from the best.

I had been able to program basic HTML, CSS and javascript websites for some time but now I was ready to be taught the good stuff. My first project was built on the WordPress platform which I had little previous experience working with. This required me to learn quickly and I did just that, getting the website completed with content by the deadline. This would not have been possible without my partner in crime: Adrian Fraguela – my tutor and mentor and also the Head of Digital at Silver. Adrian has taught me everything I didn’t know from SEO, CMS and PHP to server configuration, MySQL and analytics.

I have not only learnt a great deal about programming, I have also learnt a vast amount about the brand and marketing industry and about myself. One of my bigger surprises was how much I love the data we get back! I’m not a ‘numbers’ kind of guy but getting, manipulating and displaying data that comes from the web has been the most exciting part for me. I’m also continually amazed by how people engage with the things I build and I enjoy trying to optimize their interactions and experiences.

Sometimes I can’t believe how much I’ve learned and I find it hard to remember what life was like before joining Silver. This past year has been challenging, exhilarating, sometimes close to overwhelming, frustrating and but importantly, awesome – It’s been the best year of my life! I still get a massive kick inside when I tell people I’m a developer and not a barista.

Levi Cole CWTB – Cool Web Team Player, Silver
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