The second Developer Avocado 🥑 we interviewed for this year’s advent was Mike Elsmore. He’s recorded the answers to our questions in a video and lightly transcribed here for posterity. Enjoy, and we’ll see y’all tomorrow!


Tell us a bit about yourself.

Hi, I’m Mike Elsmore, I’m Developer Advocate at where I’ve been starting to look more into focusing on our integrations and some of our partner work. Outside of work really I’m just a normal person into movies, games, music, all that sort of stuff. I really miss gig venues. I really miss going for a beer with friends.

How did you get into Developer Relations?

I got into Developer Relations back in 2014, and back then I think I got into it via a relatively normal route for back then. I was massively into the hackathon scene. I was attending a load, I was competing, had the great joy of going to the PayPal Battlehack series in the UK and even travelled abroad with friends. We even thought my friend Jake would be the one who got the developer job, not me, but that’s beside the point. I was also massively into my local Dev community. I was helping to run some meetups, and helping, well, I was running Hackference. It was a conference and hackathon thing that I think people liked. So I had this little bit of community stuff that helped form a basis for me getting involved.

What advice would you give people looking to join you?

For somebody new coming into this, the world has changed since I got involved. There’s no longer this weird hook thing that you can build some credibility around. I personally feel that you just need to care and show that you care. That could be through teaching and building things; it can be through educating through talks or blogs, it could be podcasting, it could be anything as long as you show a sense of empathy and caring in what you do and wanting to help other people grow.

How has your role changed in the past year?

Over last year my role has changed a lot. I got back into DevRel right at the beginning of the year. I was a tech lead at a local Birmingham business before then, and I got back in just before everything changed. I even managed to get to one trade show where I was thinking I was going to be doing the normal road warrior thing and now it’s all, it’s all change. I’m helping with different marketing initiatives that I wouldn’t have normally done; we’re doing podcasting, streaming, YouTube videos, everything to try and differentiate and help. And I don’t see that changing anytime soon.

How do you see the future of DevRel?

I don’t really feel qualified to talk about the future of DevRel. Not only am I only just getting back into it and learning where my feet are and how to operate. But the world around me is still in flux. When I started, there were just communities and then “becoming a road warrior”, and then there became Developer Experience and Education and… And now I have no idea what’s going to happen, but I really hope it’s gonna carry on—like, expanding into different specialities, like DevOps has specialities with Software Reliability Engineers etc. I’m hoping that something appears where I can find more of a niche going forwards.