Currently a student at Wild Code School's Paris-based web developer training program, Paul-Emmanuel turned to this tech profession to carry out his own entrepreneurial project. We've prepared an interview for you to discover his career!
Former restaurant manager Paul-Emmanuel explains his career path
Hello Paul-Emmanuel! Can you introduce yourself in a few words? What was your background before joining Wild Code School?
After my studies, I worked for a few years in the fast-food industry. I was able to evolve successively from employee to department manager, assistant manager and finally restaurant manager. In 2017, I decided to start my own business, and I created my ultimate goal along with my partner: a 100% organic fast-food chain. After opening our first outlet in 2017, we decided to end our adventure for various reasons in early 2020.
Why did you decide to go into the digital field after working in the restaurant industry?
The trigger certainly came from the first confinement related to COVID. I had always been attracted to digital and new technologies, but I'd never taken the time to get into it. During the lockdown, I took the time to think about it and started taking small online courses. I also had an entrepreneurial idea related to my experience in the restaurant business.
The restaurant industry and the digital revolution: what's up with that?
In your opinion, has the restaurant industry sufficiently secured its digital future? If not, what issues have you been able to identify?
The restaurant sector in France is very vast and varied. Over the past decade—and thanks in part to cooking shows—it's a sector that has become much sexier and attracted different and more trained types... Thus, many startups have developed around this sector and offer digital services that revolutionize it, bringing original ideas. This is great, but it also raises important issues that involve not only the restaurant industry. For example, we can point to the social status of meal delivery drivers. I think another important issue is training. With digital, jobs are going to change much more quickly, and we're going to have to train and support staff in this sector so they don't wind up on the sidelines.
Web development at Wild Code School
Let's get back to you! You're currently training as a web developer on our Paris campus. How do you feel about your last month of training?
I'm very happy with the experience. We're currently finishing our "client projectdeveloping the showcase ", which consists in site administrator sectionwith an for an ophthalmologist specialized in certain diseases. Coding for a "real" project—one that will be deployed and used daily by the actual project's owner—is very interesting. The fact that we can put what we've learned into practice during training on such a large project is a great way to end.
What do you like most about Wild Code School?
I think it's the pedagogy. At university, I wasn't a rock-star student, and I was often bored. Later, I realized that it wasn't me who was mediocre; it was just the pedagogy and the system that didn't really fit me. Both the quest system that precedes the courses and the live coding and the mutual help and explanations from other Wilders are really learning methods that better suit me. Moreover, the atmosphere within the class is really good, and it's more motivating to come to the campus each morning.
How do you see your career evolving after your training at Wild Code School?
I'm currently in the process of applying to several companies for a developer internship, but also to Wild Code School itself, where I've applied for a teaching assistant position for next session. This would be an opportunity for me to consolidate my knowledge by helping future Wilders while continuing to work on my own projects.
Entrepreneurship means daring to jump into the deep end
You have a very specific entrepreneurial project after your training; can you tell us a little more about it?
I have an application project, and I'm working on the initial version so I can try to present it and find partner companies and funding to further develop it.
Are you going to wear both the restoration and web development hats for this project?
My application project was born during my entrepreneurial experience, so there's of course a link with the restaurant sector. But I'd also like to bring a global solution that can be adapted to all sectors in order to help entrepreneurs and companies in a particular field. If it comes to fruition, I think we'll start with the restaurant sector, which I know well, before moving on to other sectors.
What advice would you give to those who want to move into web development?
Just do it. I don't think there is a miracle recipe for shifting careers. Everyone has their own motivation, their own experience, and their own way of doing things. What I do know is that the present is digital, and the future will most certainly be as well. Development is an accessible gateway to the digital world.
Thank you for all these answers! What final words do you have for Wilders?
Take advantage of the training and everything it has to offer you. More globally, don't be afraid of the business side, of presenting proposals to others—and especially of failure, because in training or entrepreneurship, failure doesn't really exist. Whatever happens, you always come out having learned something, seeing things in a different way, and having created new relationships. In short, you always come out a winner.
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