How did you get involved in tech?
Becoming involved in tech was never actually part of my college plans. I went into college knowing that I loved math but had no clue as to what I could do with it. I ended up taking an introduction to computer science class and fell in love. The tech community at Rutgers helped with this push by being especially welcoming and encouraging.
What did you major in during college?
I majored in Computer Science with a minor in Math at Rutgers University.
Describe a typical work day.
I usually come in and open my email and chat client to catch up on things I might have missed from the night prior. I then realize that I need a cup of tea and usually pick up some fresh fruit while I’m in the kitchen. I tend to not sit in a lot of meetings, but when I do they’re usually all grouped back to back before lunch. This allows me to have a contiguous block available for coding after lunch. It’s extremely important to have as many uninterrupted hours of programming as possible to really retain your concentration; it can be very hard to context switch with meetings spaced out throughout the day.
Throughout the day I tend to check in with my technical product manager and other stakeholders about the current project I’m working on. By keeping them updated with my timeline and any blockers I may have, it allows them to align their schedule and expectations against my own. I also try and continuously deploy my code to production to allow for continuous feedback and testing, while rolling out the project securely. My day to day is a constant balance of working on my current project while rolling out completed work that has been reviewed, approved and tested.
What is the most challenging part of your job? What is the most rewarding part of your job?
Most developers, myself included, tend to enjoy cleaning up tech debt. Tech debt is a term we use to describe code that has been worked on in a short sighted manner. This usually occurs when features get developed within a tight time frame and better long term solutions cannot be thought of or considered. This ends up slowing down any future developers in this area of the code base. Every so often we like to put current work on the back burner and spend time cleaning up the tech debt that has accrued!
This leads to stumbling across small problems on a day to day basis. The most challenging part of my job is balancing working on these issues while focusing on the bigger picture and higher priority items for the business. It’s extremely easy to get wrapped up in the small stuff, but seeing the outcomes of the important work makes this balance easier.
The most rewarding part of my job is seeing all of the benefits that my work brings the team. Most of my recent projects have involved working on our point of sale application that is used in all of our retail stores. Creating new features that benefit hundreds of retail associates every day is the most rewarding feeling I could think of.
What is the best part about working at Warby Parker?
The team. I’ve worked at Warby Parker for over 3 years now and I’ve seen the company grow tremendously. We’ve continuously brought on incredible people and strive to have a completely engaged community. My coworkers highly contribute towards the excitement I feel coming into work every day.
What is your favorite thing about technology and coding?
My favorite thing about technology and coding is actually being able see a direct outcome of the work I put in every day. I feel extreme pride and joy every time I see somebody using a product I’ve put many many hours into.
What do you like to do in your free time?
Since I’m usually surrounded by technology and people who love to talk about technology for the majority of my day, my out of work activities tend to live completely outside of the technology realm. I tend to do a lot of reading (mainly historical fiction) and have recently taken up learning Japanese! My last few trips to Japan have left me completely enamored with the culture, which encouraged me to figure out every way I can be more engaged on my next visit.
What are three words that you would use to describe yourself?
Positive, Logical, Gryffindor
What is your favorite social media app/website?
I would say either Buzzfeed News or Twitter are my favorite. Both are incredible for catching up on the news and keeping up to date with my industry. I particularly like the push notifications that Buzzfeed News provides, I end up finding out about major world events quicker than anybody around me!
Why do you think more girls should be involved in tech?
There currently exists an unproductive circle which involves females not being exposed to technology throughout their early childhood because there are no products that are geared towards them. This leads to them not getting involved in technology later on in life and developing products their younger selves would have enjoyed. Our main issue ends up being that our society has no clue into how to attract a younger diverse crowd, because we currently aren’t a diverse crowd. If more girls get involved in technology, it can help expand the types of ideas and products that come out of the technological industry, which will in turn attract a greater audience.
Follow Karina on Twitter! @kruzinov 🌸