Tim Klinke is an IT project manager and self-taught developer. Today, he uses his skills on projects for some of Deloitte’s biggest clients. His story proves that your mindset and personal interests can be the perfect ingredients for success.

In 2017, Tim Klinke left his roots in Munich to travel north and make a fresh start in Denmark. At his new location, he freelanced and worked as a barkeeper and barista while developing coding skills for fun in his spare time.

After exploring life as a freelancer for some time, Tim was introduced to a job opportunity in Deloitte’s Systems Engineering team in Denmark. He liked the idea of developing his skillset within software development while working with agile project management – but he was not sure he had the necessary technical competencies.

He had IT project management skills from his educational and professional background, and he had some experience with coding, but he was by no means a professional software developer or DevOps evangelist, as asked for in the job ad. Still, he grabbed the opportunity and applied. Now, he has been with Deloitte for two and a half years.

“I got the job despite my imperfect profile and lack of technical skills. The hiring manager told me it was going to be difficult, but if I wanted to go in that direction, they would be happy to give me the opportunity. Deloitte listened to my story and ambitions and believed in me. Today, I am supporting clients like LEGO in developing their digital products.”

Steep learning curve and support to succeed

Without heavy coding experience, the learning curve was steep from day one. Tim quickly became part of projects for prominent clients where he developed his skills while applying them in real life.

- The first client project I was assigned to felt like a whole education, just shortened to six months. It was intense but very motivating, and I gained many of the skills I now use.

Not only did Tim have to learn many of his technical skills on the job itself – another challenge was to learn the Danish language. A challenge Deloitte quickly helped him face.

- Some of my first projects were in the public sector, where everything is typically done in Danish. As someone who did not speak much of the language, it was a bit nerve-wracking at first, but looking back it pushed me to become fluent.

In Tim’s experience, being part of a big organisation like Deloitte provides big opportunities – opportunities he believes would have never been brought his way as a freelance self-taught developer.

- I get to work on projects with some of the biggest companies in Denmark. Although responsibility comes with expectations, Deloitte truly has your back, vouches for you and helps you deliver.

Building a unique profile

Today, Tim harvests the results of his hard work, having built his own unique profile that allows him to join exciting projects and tasks.

- My path to where I am today is proof that the lack of the perfect degree or competencies is not necessarily a barrier to succeeding in a position. You just have to be curious and eager to learn.

He has never had one fixed vision in mind of his career goals. An open approach that has allowed him to shape his career and competencies along the way.

- I might have taken a few side paths in shaping my career, rather than sticking to one field. But I have come to find that there are countless opportunities when you take this approach. It has kept me motivated and energised at work.

Changing the perception of the management consultant

In an ever-changing world, companies need diversity of people and thought to stay resilient and agile. An important strategic focus area in Deloitte, and something that resonates with Tim:

- A consultant is not only one type of person. Sometimes I like to work with people and processes, and sometimes I just want to nerd out over some code. Some might say I am not necessarily the typical management consultant with my long hair, passion for surfing and often loose dress code, but I am extremely driven and dedicated to the things that make me thrive.

He encourages everyone to be themselves rather than worrying about fitting into the stereotypes.

- Show who you are. So far it has only brought a positive outcome for me. I have figured out that my key selling point is my attitude. My energy, drive and positive mindset that I bring to the job every day. Ultimately, that is what brought me where I am today – doing something I would have never thought, but I would not change it in any way.

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