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Meet Jonathan Loewen: The Fast Interview

Jonathan Loewen, Software Engineer at Fast

Jonathan Loewen

Role: Software Engineer

Team: Seller Experiences

What do you do at Fast?

I work on the Seller Dashboard for the Seller Experiences Team. I joined Fast in February of 2021.

Describe your typical day at Fast.

I start with programming and clean up, then stand-up and sync meetings, and back to programming. Sometimes I’m remote, sometimes I’m at a co-working space.

Where did you grow up, and what were you like as a kid?

I grew up in Steinbach, in Southeast Manitoba, Canada. I took the programming path in high school, and I also played piano. My immediate family owned several businesses over the years, so I grew up with varying activities and influences. 

What does your work space look like?

Normally I have a couple of mugs and right now, my laptop sits between fans so I can keep cool during this heat wave. Sometimes I work from the balcony. At my desk, I use an exercise ball to maintain concentration while relaxing.

What food or drink is always at your desk?

Coffee! If it’s good enough I’ll drink it black, but typically it needs to be a tasty treat with milk and sugar. My coffee machine keeps me going through the day. 

Why did you say yes to Fast?

I went to school with Kai (Wen Zhang, Senior Front End Engineer) and he convinced me to apply. I get to work with a friend, but it’s also a great opportunity to work with React and continue learning new technology. I think Fast has a good product and good people.

Where were you before Fast?

I worked on regulatory compliance software.

What are Fast Engineers doing that catches your eye?

Moving into new and better tech has been interesting both to learn and work with. And we all do a good job of prioritizing our time and refining the process so we can productively work on features. 

What have you found at Fast that really stands out?

I like that the teams are smaller here. It’s easier to share information and help each other, and make decisions faster and easier. And people here are good enough to have egos, but they don’t. It’s helpful to learn when another person actually knows what they’re teaching and has the confidence to teach it. 

What was your first job?

Working in a factory, manufacturing screens for windows.

What career path did you almost take?

I could have been convinced to go into the family business, but I wanted to be independent, even though it’s a great fallback plan. After high school, I went back and forth between university and retail work before going back to finish my degree in computer science. I spent a few years exploring my options because I didn’t really know what I wanted to do.

Advice for engineers wondering what to do next?

You can’t predict what you’ll like, so be willing to try new things, and give it an honest amount of time and effort before you decide if you want to continue. I didn’t think I’d like frontend development until I spent time with it. Play to your current strengths and give everything a fair shake; you have to learn the skill before you decide you don’t like it.

What's something you regularly do, but you know you shouldn't?

I spend too much time on fan theories.

Morning person or night owl?

Is it possible to be an afternoon person? It’s nice to have meetings in the morning so I can focus on programming when I’m more productive.

Your non-negotiables for life?

Be nice, be empathetic, and be willing to see other perspectives. I may be too empathetic sometimes, but I would rather be that than be less open to understanding someone else. Be slower to judge or presume you know another person.

Where can we follow you?


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