About Mike - a nerd during the day and a fighter after dark

Keilian Knudsen
Michał Tylkowski
Published: 24.11.2022

The soul of Pangea.ai’s brand is making human connections. Our tech partners continue to build and strengthen our community’s DNA. We are very proud to have DO OK as part of our circle, whose unique individuals now inspire and empower all of our team members.

Time to meet the Flutter developer / Android & Flutter Team Leader at DO OK, Michał!


Who are you and what do you do at DO OK?

Out of my two roles at DO OK, the "Flutter developer" part is definitely way easier to explain. I create cross-platform mobile applications created with technology called Flutter which runs on Dart programming language.

However, I'm also the one responsible for introducing this specific technology to DO OK, which entails a whole spectrum of new missions - from managing Flutter developer interviews (which might be my favorite thing ever) to presenting and recounting advantages of our cross-platform approach to our potential clients.

As to leading the mixed team of Android and Flutter developers, it might stand for a variety of things. In this case, it is not project-specific team leading but instead taking care of our programmers at the company's internal and personal level.

The easiest way to give the account of what this role comes down to is "I make sure my guys are happy". I'm the first line of defense for my wards as well as the one who is supposed to have answers to their questions and ability to dispel any doubts they may have.

There is also one more exhilarating aspect of being both the team leader and the first developer of my technology - which is managing the Community of Practice (CoP) of our team.

CoP in our company is a conventional name for a space for sharing and amassing knowledge related to team's specialization - for us it's just a playground for geeking out - the go-to place to pass over a new tech sneak peak to our colleagues, make sure a new, creative solution is preserved and documented or just bandy with nerdy memes.

Is Michał rehearsing a Shakespearian classic or just slowly sinking down into madness fixing a bug that StackOverflow cannot help with?

What has been your favorite project at DO OK?

So far, my absolute number 1 was a Flutter app created for a Norwegian hotel chain, whose main functionality was to pass over fire alarms reported in said hotels.

Initially it targeted hearing-impaired guests but soon the company's authorities decided to encourage all the guests to check in with this app; and thus QR codes and PIN numbers used to subscribe to notifications appeared on all the doors of this chain's hotels.

Besides the amazing purpose of the product itself and an absolute pleasure of working with a communicative and understanding client, it was just a fun challenge.

Not only was I the only mobile developer in this project, but also the prerequisite for it to succeed was to think outside the box - since the very beginning of my career I haven't had a project that would require me to learn on the go as much as this one.

Additionally, it was an alarm app after all - therefore it needed to be as much of an attention grabber as possible, which, in turn, got me to unravel my past as a native Android developer.

Part of the code responsible for making this app an actual alarm app was written in Kotlin - underneath the Flutter layer - including features like auto-launching the application upon reception of a push notification or even ignoring the lock screen!

How has DO OK helped you in your career development?

Honestly, the range of career-related possibilities DO OK offered me cannot be overestimated. I arrived here as a native Android developer with recent experience way more revolving around Flutter.

I was torn to some extent, not really sure what technology I want to find my footing in - excited about transition to Flutter but afraid of stepping away from such deeply rooted technology that native Android is.

At this point, DO OK didn't have Flutter in its tech stack but was occasionally coming across offers for Flutter projects. As soon as my supervisors found out about my fascination with this technology and learned what prospects I see in it, such offers immediately stopped being dismissed and instead were considered.

Within a few weeks I was assigned the first Flutter project in DO OK and in a few months I was assigned the mission to create a Flutter department in our company and carry out a recruitment process of another Flutter developer. We're sky rocketing!

There's one more thing, which, I believe, is frequently overlooked when it comes to supporting one's career building.

This mysterious thing is confidence - built with giving responsibilities, appreciating the results of one's work and confronting one about their setbacks in a manner that promotes improvement, not clips their wings. And I find it in spades in DO OK, which results in my career getting even more momentum.

What advice do you have for prospective DO OK candidates or just anyone considering a career path similar to yours?

This is something I learned way later than I wish I had. Superficially it might seem to be a threadbare line but I honestly believe that, after some thought put into it, it becomes quite an edification.

We've all heard this generic saying "look at the bright side" in all shapes and forms and it always comes up when we're in our lowest. Although usually said from a good heart it just happens to rile us even more and we're always instructed to look at this bright side but never HOW to do it.

It naturally depends on context but the one interpretation once hit me like a charging bull. And this one specific understanding of the "bright side" is to find inspiration where you would usually find just envy.

The fact is, given how complex human beings are, we can learn something new from every single person we happen to come across - and the issue with it is, that, as long as we're jealous of them being somehow more successful than us, we'll always remain closed to learning from them, just out of spite.

Once we turn it into any sort of inspiration - whether by means of admiration, partnership or healthy rivalry - our minds will be healthier and our life will flourish.

Well, that's how Michał actually rests...

What’s your next step, or a few goals you’d like to accomplish in life, or while with DO OK?

This is the most exciting question that looms around my mind whenever another year draws to a close!

One thing from my bucket list, that is about to resurface soon, is to step away from my sedentary life that I've been living forever.

Both the fully remote work profile at DO OK and the specification of a software developer's job itself are like an open invitation to leave my way too familiar little stretch of ground and see the world. It is yet for me to decide whether I want to travel around the globe or set my new personal HQ in Australia or Norway.

The most prominent next step I have directly related to DO OK is to create a strong foundation and a robust Flutter team I can be confident in and proud of. I want this modest mission that was commenced with our first tiny Flutter project to result in a jaw-dropping final victory.

How do you unwind after a whole day of being your professional self?

My go-to way of taking the edge off must be sports, combat sports to be specific. I started this journey as a 6-year-old and never stopped, this is where I find myself happiest and most in the right place on Earth - and thus at peace and relaxed.

Although, when it comes to fitness, my main focus is on kickboxing, I'm a well-rounded sports freak after all. Whether it is kickboxing, its supporting activities, such as gym, stretching, cardio or motorics, or something delicate and random, say, a walk or skating, this is where I'll be seeking my mental comfort and reset.

Oh, and of course, how could I forget - nothing like a good round of Call of Duty with my boys to celebrate the onset of the weekend!


Get to know Michał and the rest of the DO OK team!

We’re delighted that Michał decided to join DO OK – it’s been great having them on board! If you have any questions or want to get to know Michał or one of their colleagues from the DO OK team, we can put you in touch. Don’t hesitate to reach out!

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