Hello all! You might know me from speaking at one of the data events, with doodles on my slides. I’ll begin by telling you how I got here, so I hope you enjoy my story and can find some inspiration for yourself or take the time to encourage someone else on their path!

Getting into public speaking was never on the radar for me because it was something I thought I had no talent for. I had no idea how to make jokes, I wasn’t really very charismatic, and I never liked speaking in front of people that much. It never occurred to me that I had been practicing all along when studying math and doing substitute teaching on the side. Possibly in front of the most challenging audience of all - teenagers, who could not care less for math.

As you might guess by this, my background is in mathematics and I was supposed to become a math teacher. In the end, I decided to hop into the IT world and started from a junior consultant position where I got to begin in architecture projects. As I started to understand everything that was possible, I also came across Azure and data and was instantly intrigued. And well, it seems this is still the path I am on.

I was totally happy running trainings or workshops at the customer and found ways to leverage the teacher training that I had. I used whiteboards to draw things out whenever I could, since I had found that it helped in ensuring we were all talking about the same thing. Also, it was natural for me to adjust content of workshops on the fly and ensure that there was always the right amount of time.

In 2019, I went to Oslo for a company wide training about Azure. There I met my former colleague and excellent speaker Alexander Arvidsson. It is enough years ago now to not really remember the details but Alexander suggested that maybe I should give speaking a go and submit to the newcomer track at DataGrillen. What I do remember is that I did initially think that it was a joke. In my mind running workshops or trainings was completely different from speaking at an event. And let’s be honest, I found the idea of speaking quite intimidating. This is also part of the reason why I went for it because if I am intimidated by something, then I need to do it. I don’t necessarily recommend this approach to everyone, but I personally find value in pushing the boundaries of my comfort zone regularly. The trick is to do it in right doses.

You might be able to calculate what happened with the DataGrillen I had gotten accepted for. Well, COVID hit and the event never happened. Luckily Ben Weismann and William Durkin decided to put together New Stars of Data, in order to give new speakers the opportunity to get started. For me it has been just an adventure after another since then. The next New Stars of Data is already tomorrow, on 12th of May 2023 - make sure to scout out the new talent!

I’ve had the chance to speak at many amazing events since then and eventually at DataGrillen as well; this time no longer as a newcomer. Every time I speak, there is something that I want to improve on, but I’ve also found ways to be content in what went well at the same time.

There are many more events ahead and I’m not going to stop speaking any time soon. At the same time I want to explore with something new: this blog. I will be creating some exciting content on this blog going forward. Can you guess what it will be? And will you stick around to find out?