Author: Nic Saunders


On my first day at Arctiq, I felt pretty overwhelmed with new information. While I had done as much research as possible about my new home, moving from my career in the arts into one in the tech sector was a huge shift, culturally and linguistically. So when I was told that as part of the new hire onboarding process I needed to get shoes, I assumed it was another piece of lingo I wasn’t familiar with. As it turns out, not all things are as complicated as they seem, and by my second day I was gifted with a shiny new pair of Arctiq Adidas. I haven’t gotten to wear them yet, but they are one of the many things on the list that I have yet to “try on” here.

I think that the concept of a life-long profession is one that we as a society have outgrown. We muddle our way through, changing perspectives and values as we go, taking on new opportunities as they arise. Some people may see them as “false starts,” but I prefer to view them as trying on a new self. Such was my story, as I moved from a graduate student in the humanities, into an administrator at a large Bay Street law firm, and then into a career in the arts. Though they may seem completely unrelated to each other, there is a common thread here: I was always very invested in the people I was working with. I wanted to see them thrive, and sometimes it felt like I spent as much time at coffee or drinks discussing their life goals and disappointments as I did working on the projects we shared.

It soon became clear that the reason I was enthralled by the world of theatre was not always because of the art itself but because of the tight-knit communities that arise as a result of the potent combination of passion, skill, and a firm deadline. I began looking further afield into ways I could combine my ability to talk to people about themselves, and my desire to continue learning and changing. My friend, Kayla, was knee-deep in the tech industry at this point and she seemed really happy with where she was. Two years ago I tested the water of coding, trying to see if I could be one of those people who could figure everything out on my own. As it turns out, when it comes to coding, I’m not. No harm, no foul. But the seed had been planted, my stubborn nature activated, I wanted to explore my future in the industry in whatever way I could. I researched bootcamps, and even visited a few. Unfortunately, as a single mom of two I found the best bootcamps couldn’t be accommodating of my schedule, and I wasn’t eager to return to college or university education for a third time. I set the idea to the side for a while. Flash forward to two years later, I found there could potentially be a space for me at Arctiq. It was a chance for me to immerse myself in the technologies I wanted to learn, as well as share the soft skills I had to offer. Part of this requires me to offer myself up to the altar of humility. I am starting with fresh eyes, none of the swagger that comes along once you’ve become a bit complacent.

In my brief time here, I have been happy to find that Arctiq takes a holistic approach to keeping their highly skilled employees happy, healthy, and engaged. Everyone here works hard with the same buoyant energy I’ve always thrived on in the past. And unlike many other companies, Arctiq is truly grateful for their team members. It shouldn’t be revolutionary to appreciate the people that make everything move forward, but it is! I look forward to energizing my role here, working on creating programs that allow for our team members to communicate openly and as effectively as possible, which in turn creates the smooth flow of work. I hope I can be a non-judgemental touchpoint where people can share everything from frustrations to excitement about new projects. Making life at Arctiq as positive as possible means that our team members will feel balanced, creative and excited and productive.

There are no false starts, only new beginnings. I’m looking forward to the vast world of opportunity that has opened up before me. New shoes, indeed.

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