Pull Quote: I’m really thankful to WordPress. Because of this community I have overseas friends.

How WordPress Has Changed My Life – Gtarafdar

I’m Gobinda Tarafdar from Dhaka, Bangladesh. In short, Gtarafdar. This short form is available everywhere on social media. Actually, while I was a kid, a medicine specialist suggested this short form of my name. From that time, I had a plan to use it. Moving on, now I have become a WordPress Enthusiast Marketer. In this essay, I will share my journey to WordPress with you.

Gobinda in winter clothing

Early Stage Of My Career:

I started my career as a teacher in an academic coaching center back in 2010. I was then a 1st-year student of my 4-year Graduation Program. But the number of my earnings was not sufficient to cover all my livelihood. My parents were giving me support to continue my study at that time. So I was looking for more ways to earn my living. But in our country, it’s tough to get a job without graduation. I tried to find more tutoring jobs but failed to get one. Then I gave stand-up comedy a try. At that time, it became popular. I participated in a TV reality show based on stand-up comedy. But failed to reach the top five. So, didn’t get much success in the comedy sector as well.

Gobinda doing standup comedy

In this way, two years passed. After a while, I got the idea of a call center job in the telco industry of our country. I gave an interview to our number one telco company Grameenphone – a sister concern of Telenor. And luckily got the chance to join there. And it’s a game-changing part of my career. I learned a lot about team play, pressure handling, the ability to put myself in a customer’s shoes, and more. But it was a part-time job, and my graduation was about to end. Immediately after finishing my graduation, I got the opportunity to join Grameenphone’s Finance team. However, I had to pass the challenging interview as many other promising candidates were competing with me. Everything seemed so great at that time. Got the opportunity to work in the country’s best corporate office, but bad luck struck again. Didn’t get the chance to be a full-time employee from contractual employee status.

I took a break to join the country’s public service commission. Unfortunately, I failed to get the desired position again. In the meantime, my father retired from his job. All of a sudden, so many responsibilities came upon me. By the way, I forgot to mention, in this time frame, I had completed my Graduation, Masters, and MBA. The year where I’m now in the beginning of 2018. After my father’s retirement, I had no time for an experiment. But the main challenge came then.

No one wanted to give me a chance as I worked at one of Bangladesh’s most prominent companies; they thought I couldn’t fit into their office culture.

Also, I wanted to start my career as a Digital Marketer, and I had no practical experience at that time. I had some certification of Udemy and Hubspot free courses. But I was confident that I had a degree of MBA in Marketing. But all of my confidence was doomed within three months. I stopped applying everywhere, started to do some research on the job sector. Finally, I decided to join the IT industry, and in our country, WordPress Based companies are in the leading position. So, I had my target fixed towards the WordPress industry.

A Huge Risk-Taking State in My Career:

I took a huge risk to start my career in the WordPress industry. After not seeing much job opportunities in the Digital Marketing area in my country, I was planning to join the telco industry again as I was finding no option to cherish my dream. I badly needed a job at that time. But meanwhile, I found a job circular in weDevs. They were looking for a Digital Marketer Intern. So I made my decision to take part in this program. Surprisingly, I got another job offer from a renowned MNC of our country in the sales team. But I took a huge risk and started trying for the weDevs internship program, and refused the salesperson job. My friends Mayeen & Arif helped me a lot to learn more about WordPress. And they guided me on how I could set up localhost on my computer, and from then, I started to explore themes and plugins from the WordPress repository. I must say I got an interesting tool to play with. After passing three stages, I finally got the chance to join weDevs. weDevs is a popular WordPress Plugin making company. It’s famous for Dokan Multivendor Marketplace Solution for WooCommerce.

Collage of Gobinda at work.
My Life at weDevs

Ohh, maybe you have a question about how it can be risky to go for the weDevs internship program! Well, the payout of the other company was three times higher than the weDevs internship payout. And I refused to join the other sales team while I still didn’t have any guarantee to join the weDevs team. So now you can judge, isn’t that risky? (Sorry, I can’t share the name of the sales company publicly here due to some policy issue.)

The Journey to WordPress:

From the day when I had installed WordPress in my local host, my journey in this ecosystem started. I found it so easy to use and user-friendly that I felt anyone could create a website. I started to read articles and explore the World of WordPress. Also, weDevs’s internship program helped me a lot to get involved in the WordPress industry. My mentor Afshana Diya and Mainul Kabir Aion guided me a lot to dive deep into the sea of WordPress. Learned the area of content marketing, explored paid mediums, gathered knowledge on social media marketing, and more within three months. The internship program was exact and compact, along with interactive.

Here came another twist. I wanted to be a part of the Digital Marketing Team. But because of my communication skills and interpersonal relationship skills, Mr. Nizam Uddin (Founder & CEO at weDevs) offered me the Business Development executive position. It was an entirely new thing at weDevs. I was the one-man army in the Business Development Team. And it opened up a new world to me. At that time, I got my first chance to attend a WordCamp (WCAhmedabad, India 2018). From that time, I got the motive to be involved in the WordPress Community. I’ll share how WordCamps can help you to join the community closely. Later on, I got the chance to participate in WordCamp Kolkata 2019, WordCamp Nagpur 2019. It was a fantastic journey to join WordCamps in person. In 2019 I took part in WordCamp Dhaka as a volunteer.

Gobinda's Journey to WordCamps
My Journey to WordCamps

I’d love to share with you; now, I have become part of the Digital Marketing Team of weDevs. After almost two years of my journey as a business development executive, I got this new opportunity to prove myself again. So I took this opportunity and became a Digital Strategist.

Now I’m dedicatedly taking care of a sole product. It’s an Addon of Elementor Page Builder. It’s HappyAddons for Elementor. I’m the product coordinator of this excellent tool. From zero to now, 100k+ users are actively using this tool. It’s an incredible learning period in my career path. I learned how to grow a product from the ground level. It’s a great achievement for me as a Product Marketer.

How WordCamp Helps Me to Become a Member in the WordPress Community:

WordCamps are the place of like-minded people. When you are in touch with the right people under the same roof, you will get that homely feeling. Also, in WordCamps, you get to meet industry experts. Interestingly, you can collect lucrative swag items. To some extent, you will get an opportunity to make partnerships to expand the business. Moreover, some companies share job boxes where anyone can share their resume. So it could be a place of opportunities. Who knows what you will get. But in my case, I made so many friends. We are now close buddies.

The exciting part, some WordCamps run contributors day. On that day, you will get the chance to know closely about how you can take part in the core programs of WordPress. From WordCamp Ahmedabad, I started participating in WordPress programs, also started joining WordPress teams meetings. I’ve become active on social media as well to spread news and updates related to WordPress.

How I’m Enriching My Knowledge of WordPress:

One line changes my way of thinking. Once I was talking with our Founder & CTO, Mr. Tareq Hasan, regarding this topic. He just said, “Gobinda, you don’t have to learn coding to solve the problems of WordPress; you have to gain the ability to solve the problem by anyhow. You can solve any kind of problem by referring to other WordPress Plugins and tools.”

I got a new meaning of using WordPress. From that time, I have started to check WordPress plugins and themes to learn more about their purpose. WordPress repository now becomes a place of amusement for me. Sometimes, my colleagues refer to me as a ‘plugin man’ as I try to give a quick solution to WordPress-related problems with the help of WordPress plugins.

Still, I’m participating in several Facebook Group discussions. Trying to solve several solutions and learning what problems are usually people facing while creating websites with WordPress. And believe me, there is definitely a solution to each particular problem.

You have to keep patience and search for the solution in the right type of keywords.

For example, yesterday on the Facebook group – WordPressian (Dedicated Facebook Group for those who speak Bangali), a person was looking to create a courier service platform where people can track their package. Most people suggested building a custom-made solution. But I know there is a solution; I randomly found it on the WP repository.

So I just googled this term “WordPress plugin: courier service”. Google didn’t disappoint me.

I got my answer, read the description, reviewed, checked screenshots, and shared the solution with that person.

To increase my knowledge of WordPress, I use another method. I use some Google Chrome Extensions for checking the Builtwith Materials of WordPress sites. When I jump on a WordPress site, I just click on the Chrome Ext. and check the plugins they’ve used to create their site. And it helps me a lot to learn the tools and their purposes. You can do that if you want to increase your knowledge of WordPress.

Lastly, you have to create a site by yourself. Otherwise, you would not be able to know the issue on your own. At least create your own portfolio site. I have learned so many things while creating my portfolio site: gtarafdar.com. You will know some untold facts, and finally, you will get a boost. Mr. Asif Rahman, the founder of WP Developers, gave me this idea. He always inspires me to create a personal website. Also, he forced me to write about WordPress daily. Guided me on how I can create a site with Elementor in 2018. I became familiar with a handy tool that helps me create a site without having coding experiences from that time. Later on, it helped me to take over the Happy Elementor Addons Project.

How you can connect with WordPress Socially:

Twitter is the best medium. I opened my Twitter account in 2010. But I had no motivation to use it as I didn’t have people close to me there. My friends were all on Facebook. I was also trying to involve myself on Facebook. But after joining weDevs, I found my Mentor, Afshana Diya, was so active on Twitter, and she has so many like-minded people on Twitter, and most of them belong to the WordPress community. I got new motivation to use Twitter. I started to connect with WordPress Professionals. Also interacted with them regularly. And I must say it feels really amazing.

I’ve prepared a Twitter list of WordPress Influencers. You can easily follow them from here.

How you can start your career at WordPress:

If you have a passion for coding, you could be a WordPress developer. In our region, here is a myth. To become a developer, you have to be a CSE grad. But it’s not true. Let’s check a fact. In our weDevs, most of the Developers are directly not from Computer Science Engineering backgrounds. In the same way, you may have joined the CSE program at an early stage, but now you may not have that much passion for coding. You can be a Product Manager. In the WordPress industry, there is scope for a Product manager as well. Another exciting sector is the Quality Assurance team. So many companies are hiring in this sector. Moreover, if you like to communicate with people, you can join the Support Engineering team. You can’t imagine how many job openings there are in the support engineering field.

Those who don’t have any coding knowledge but are proficient in English and have a passion for writing can join as Content Marketers. There are plenty of job vacancies in the content marketing area.

Another interesting option is joining the Designing team. If you find interest in the designing sector and love to play with the designing tools like Figma, Adobe Tools, Sketch, you can definitely join the design team of a WordPress company.

Later on, other job sectors like HR management, Accounts, Business Development, and other necessary areas are also available on WordPress companies. More interestingly, you can work remotely in so many companies. WordPress founding company Automattic is running its whole operation remotely. You just have to find your perfect niche. Otherwise, you can be frustrated.

I’ve prepared a list of WordPress companies where you can apply for jobs.

Finally, don’t be frustrated, my mate. I often hear from my fellow friends and juniors always blame God, parents, and the government because of their unemployment problem. But when I reach them and personally request to gain some technical skills, they just run away most of the time. Not even reply to my messages anymore. Even some of them block me. Lol. Also, some other groups are available; they knock me for jobs and share their family issues, but when I ask them to learn more about web development, they just fly like a bat. I don’t know what their problem is. If you are in the same category, then my mate, you are in huge trouble. Change your mindset. Gain some skills. It could be anything. Try one by one. Then choose the best one for you. But again, don’t be frustrated. Keep focusing on your goal. And dive into it.

What’s The Challenge on Working in WordPress Industry:

I’ve shared all the positive things about joining the WordPress industry. But there is a significant challenge you have to face while you will join the community. In my region, very few people know WordPress. Only tech-savvy people are familiar with that. Even most of the people don’t have any prior knowledge about remote job life. I have personally experienced so many funny incidents. Last year when my family members found me in front of my Mac and sometimes talking with some people, sometimes in English, they found me as an alien in my house. Even most of the time, I failed to give proof of how the whole work was done. You will face the same situation if you belong to the rural area of Bangladesh. But don’t worry, I prepared a comic book on Describe WordPress To Non-Techies. You can read the conversation with my Grandpa. I have tried to give an idea about WordPress. I hope this will help you to introduce WordPress to the non-tech guys.

How I’m Contributing to the WordPress Community and how you can start:

Usually, I try to attend the weekly meeting of WordPress teams. I have attended several coffee-talk sessions of WordPress Teams. It helps me join with the members. Also, I’m trying to contribute to the Polyglot team. I have started to give suggestions of translating WordPress in Bangla. But mostly, I contribute in different ways. I have conducted local WordPress meet-ups, volunteered on WordCamps. I spread the news and updates through my social media accounts. Help WordPress people to find jobs. Recently, I’ve started my YouTube Channel(Gtarafdarr). I have begun to create how-to tutorials on WordPress.

If you want to join WordPress core teams, you will need a WordPress Slack Account. From here, you can join WordPress Slack.

From here, you will find the meeting schedules of different teams. Don’t get puzzled. You can sort out your desired teams and add the meeting reminders to your calendar.

Everyone in the WordPress community is so helpful. If you find any difficulties, raise your hand and people will guide you in the right way.

Also, there are so many WordPress Facebook communities. Some are locals, and few are international, like WordPress, Advanced WordPress, WordPress For Non-Techies by WPCrafter, The WP Admin Bar, WPLeague, WPBeginner Engage – WordPress Help for Non-Techies, etc. Local Communities are, WordPressians, Kolkata WordPress Community (WPKolkata), etc. You can join these groups to get help from experts. Also, you can help others if you know the answers of the queries.

This How WordPress Changed My Life

Finally, I’m really thankful to WordPress. Because of this community I have overseas friends. We talk and meet virtually. All of them are so helpful. I get new motivations to do something extraordinary in my daily routine. I’m thankful to my parents and my younger sister as they rely upon me. They help me to take the risk to chess my dream. I’m grateful to weDevs and Tareq Hasan, Nizam Uddin, Asif Rahman, Afshana Diya, Mainul Kabir Aion, and my friends Arif, Mayeen, Shahriar, Mazhar, and so on. They all have played a significant role in helping me become Gtarafdar, a WordPress enthusiast. Also, thanks to the HeroPress team for reaching me and encouraging me to share my story here.

I’m still learning about WordPress and have to go further. If you want to connect with me, you can follow me on Twitter: @Gtarafdarr. Let’s contribute to WordPress and hold the glory of the supreme power of an open-source platform.

3 Comments

  1. Good to know more about your Mr. Rockstar Gtarafderr. Wishing you all the best for the future days and it has been a pleasure for me to work w/ you and geek out on ideas.

    Take care.
    S.

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