The Imposter Syndrome Network Podcast

Grant Colgan

December 20, 2022 Chris & Zoë Season 1 Episode 21
The Imposter Syndrome Network Podcast
Grant Colgan
Show Notes Transcript

Hello and welcome to the Imposter Syndrome Network Podcast, where everyone belongs, especially if you think you don't.

Our guest today is Grant Coglan, a cyber security engineer and proliferous Tik-Toker.

In this episode, we discuss his day-to-day activities and what he does outside of TikTok.

He describes his path to where he is now, his motivation for pursuing a degree,, and the huge role that his wife had in his career.

Grant spoke with us about how video games influenced his career choice, what his opinion about the usefulness of a college degree is and how to avoid being banned from TikTok as a cyber security communicator.

The worst someone can say is no.
Just ask people things.
You'd be surprised how many times you'll get away with it.



Thanks for being an imposter - a part of the Imposter Syndrome Network (ISN)!

We'd love it if you connected with us on LinkedIn:

Make it a great day.

This transcript is machine generated and may contain errors.

[00:00:00] Chris: Hello and welcome to the Imposter Syndrome Network Podcast where everyone belongs, even you. Yes, I'm talking about you. You're part of the Imposter Network now. We welcome all imposters. My name is Chris Grundman and I'm here with my Supercalifragilistic co-host, Zoe Rose. Hey, this is the Grant Colgan episode, and I think we're all in for a treat.

[00:00:32] Chris: Grant is a huge star on TikTok, a platform I'll admit I've never used, and he's a cybersecurity engineer as well.

[00:00:44] Chris: Howdy. Grant, would you like to introduce yourself a bit more to the imposter syndrome network?

[00:00:48] Grant: Sure. Yeah. How did you find out about TikTok? I didn't tell you about that. Um, I usually try and keep that secret. No, that's fine. Um, yeah, I live in Northern Ireland. I'm a security engineer. I have been for about eight years, I think, or been in cyber security for eight years or so.

[00:01:06] Chris: Uh, That's great. And I actually do wanna start, if it's okay with my ignorance of TikTok. We always do a little bit of research on our guests before they come on, especially the ones I haven't met yet personally. And you know, I saw that you have 95,000 followers, 666,000 likes, and your videos, it looks like they're getting between two and 5,000 views per each video.

[00:01:29] Chris: You know, some of them even much more than that. And like I said, it's a platform I've never been on, and so I'm just wondering, I mean that those numbers sound really impressive and really good. But again, I don't know anything about TikTok. Maybe you can tell us a little bit about, you know, putting out cyber security content on TikTok, why you started doing that.

[00:01:44] Chris: How's it going? Are, you know, humbly are those good numbers? I mean, you know, how, how's the whole thing going? And, and, uh, I'm, I'm interested about the whole thing really. 

[00:01:51] Grant: Yeah, sure. So, I mean, numbers wise, yeah. I, I think it's okay. The, not from a humble perspective, I think that's okay. There's some people who have million.

[00:01:59] Grant: Pulling out cyber security on TikTok is hard because TikTok really does not like cybersecurity people. My account is one report away from being banned. It gets taken down all the time and they Really? Yeah, and, and they had the cheek recently. They, they put out a thing for cyber security awareness month.

[00:02:17] Grant: And they said, Here are cybersecurity champions. And they had some random people who possibly do good content. I didn't look them up. I was too salty that I wasn't one of them. Um, . No, it's fine. But I just thought, Yeah, you're, you're, you're out here, you're promoting. Look, here's our cybersecurity creators, yet myself and all the other really good cybersecurity creators get banned so often and get videos taken down for illegal activities and there's no, there's no good way to report.

[00:02:44] Chris: Oh, because you're, I guess, talking about hacking. Exactly. Yeah. Yeah. I guess it can be illegal.

[00:02:50] Grant: It can be my video explaining when it's illegal and when it's not. Got took down , of course. I was like, Really? So yeah. Yeah. I, I started doing it. I'm gonna, I'm gonna blame my wife for this, I think. I think it was her fault.

[00:03:05] Grant: I think she's coming on the podcast at some point, so, you know, tuning in for that one, she's far more interesting than me and she started using TikTok or started getting videos, sort of viewing them. I seen it and I'd been doing YouTube at the time and doing YouTube at the minute. It takes up so much time to do videos, edit them.

[00:03:21] Grant: I mean, I'm sure you was well aware and I just didn't have the time with the kids and everything else, and I thought, well, this. It takes two seconds to record, Two seconds to upload. Let's, let's try it. So yeah, I still try and do both, but my YouTube is like maybe once every six months I get around uploading something.

[00:03:38] Chris: Yeah. Fair. Like video editing is definitely intimidating to me. Just the time commitment to, to get something that comes out. Right. I'm guessing your content resonates, because I mean, I, I scrolled through your Twitter feed as well, and I think you're a really funny guy. Definitely your sense of humor resonates with me, so I'm, I'm, I'm assuming that's partly what comes through TikTok and, and TikTok is interesting to me.

[00:03:56] Chris: I promise we won't talk about TikTok the entire time, folks, but it's interesting to me because, you know, a bunch of news has come out lately that, you know, kids are using TikTok as their primary search engine. Like when they wanna look something up, they go search on TikTok. Which is terrifying, but also says something about, you know, you know, at least the current but you know, importance of that platform.

[00:04:16] Chris: And then even, even a lot of adults are using TikTok as a source of news where the, you know, there are, you know, folks personalities on there where that's where folks are getting their news, which isn't totally surprising cuz we've done that on all the other social platforms so far. Right. I mean, they've really quickly became kind of the news aggregators for us.

[00:04:30] Chris: But yeah, super interesting and, and cool to see someone at least trying to, even if you're getting, uh, smacked down every now and then trying to bring the cyber security awareness and, and knowledge, uh, to that new audience. 

[00:04:41] Zoe: I'm just gonna be the voice of reason here that is a lot of bloody followers and a lot of bloody likes.

[00:04:46] Zoe: So I'm gonna say actually that's really impressive. Regardless if you wanna be humble or not, I'm gonna be not humble for you. Um, cuz that's really impressive . Uh, but I suppose besides TikTok, what do you actually do? What's your job? 

[00:04:59] Grant: It's, it's a weird one. Tell me more. Okay. So , okay, sure. I mean, I usually try and keep this secret, but for you, I'll give you an exclusive

[00:05:08] Chris: Ooh, you heard it here first, folks.

[00:05:10] Grant: Yeah. I, I try and keep where I work off the internet, like the company that I work for, because I do TikTok and YouTube, and in case I say something stupid, it can come back to them. So it, it's actually so severe that a recruiter for the company messaged me on LinkedIn. Said, Hey, I seen your profile. Do you wanna, you know, do you wanna talk about a job?

[00:05:27] Grant: And so I, I messaged him, like, on the internal teams channel and said, um, I'm glad you think the CVS really good. He's like, Oh, sorry. Didn't realize 

[00:05:34] Chris: Nice. I, I, now, now I wanna raise. 

[00:05:36] Grant: Yeah. Yeah. , Yeah, I should have, everyone said that. I should have seen how much they were offering for the job, but yeah, so I, I work for CME group, uh, Chicago Versatile Exchange and part of their security.

[00:05:46] Grant: Up until about seven, eight months ago, I was a security engineer, so just like setting up their tools, so like their SIM tools or firewalls, all, all that good stuff. But I just moved inside their soc, their security operations center for CAT team called the CAT Team. Depending who you ask, it sometimes stands for content automation.

[00:06:05] Grant: Sometimes it stands for cyber automation. Depending on how old the DOC is you're reading it changes. I think they just wanted the acronym CAT and decided to make words fit around that. And, um, our job is to automate the, like the whole instant response life cycle. So from detection to response to wrapping up effectively, not to replace our analysts, but to try and obviously keep their workload as, as limited as possible.

[00:06:27] Grant: So a lot of coding in Python, a lot of plan about with them, they're called SOAR tools and they're very interesting. So that's, that's what I do. 

[00:06:35] Zoe: That's really cool. Cause I obviously, you know, I work in security as well, but I always get to the point where it's like, okay, we've got tools in place, we've got, um, people dealing with tickets.

[00:06:45] Zoe: I've never really gotten to the point where it's like, okay, now let's do the second phase, the innovation phase of let's do lots more automation. What do you think kind of got to the point where you are doing so well in that, that you can then apply? How do you apply the automation there, I suppose? Does that make sense?

[00:07:01] Grant: Like as in if, if you were a company, what, at what point do you decide to start doing that? Or 

[00:07:05] Zoe: no, I'm thinking more from like your perspective of like, um, I suppose I don't quite understand what your day to day looks like. Do you, would you say, Oh, this use case is I, can I can make that more effective? Or is it like you're assigned.

[00:07:18] Zoe: The automation tasks and you apply it. Does that make sense? 

[00:07:21] Grant: Oh, I see, I see, I see. Um, yeah, it's a little bit of both. We, um, like we just, we just put in a button for the engineer, for the analyst to use little button, and they press the button. They put in their idea of something that they want us to automate, and then we automate it.

[00:07:35] Grant: But that's new and everyone would thought it was all and shiny. The first request we got through was that the CAT request button should meow when clicked. So, You can imagine . That is amazing. We might do it, We might , I vote for that one. Yeah. Some of it is starting to come through in that form where it's, they think of what, what would they want changed or what would they want, like streamlined in any way, shape, or form.

[00:07:57] Grant: But there is also an element that the team itself is fairly new and the people who were first in the team came from the like detection and response. So they already had that fur idea of what the teams did in their day to day. And they were like, Well, I know this sucked for me, so I'm going to, I'm going to automate it and change.

[00:08:13] Grant: I came in from a purely engineering background. I had no, like, I'm not an incident responder, I'm not a detection analyst. I would look at a monitoring queue and go, Yeah, that looks all fine to me. I don't know. So I had no idea. So, um, I actually embedded myself into those teams and I was like, Right, teach me as if I'm you.

[00:08:29] Grant: Like, you know, show me your. Your workflow sort of worked. I got too busy with cat stuff and I think I've done like two days with them, but you know, the idea was there, so that was something that we try and do that if, if we're actively hunting for things, we would just go and sit with the team and be like, Right.

[00:08:43] Grant: Show me, show me your day. What, what can I ? Let me see if I can see. What could make this better? 

[00:08:49] Zoe: That sounds so interesting. I really like that actually. Wow. How do you get to that place? Like I suppose if we look back on your journey, how did you really end up where you are, If that makes sense? Yeah. 

[00:09:00] Grant: Uh, yeah.

[00:09:01] Grant: My wife. Yeah, so whenever I was looking for a tech job, I had, how do we, like, how do we job, like fixing computers, like basic stuff. But I was trying to get into it like properly and it was, Kiri had just started a job with White Hat Security eventually through her dad. He knew someone who knew someone who knew someone who might to get me an interview.

[00:09:21] Grant: And I managed to not mess it up so bad that they, they hired me and they were an IT consultancy company, but they were sort of around like the auditing space, like IO 27001 and things like. So what I was doing was basic it SysAdmin stuff, but it was all surrounded by security. And then with Katie being actually doing real security at the time, she started going to you cybersecurity events.

[00:09:45] Grant: She was talking about cybersecurity and I was like, You know what, this is really interesting. And so I started looking at it. And then from, um, previous background in, in the Army with radios, I started looking at the videos and the computers and made a connection that many people far smarter than me had already made that if you treat like wifi and Bluetooth, like a video signal rather than like wifi or Bluetooth, you can do some fun stuff and break it.

[00:10:10] Grant: So I started looking at that. Then I started going to conferences and talking about it, which is how I met you, in, um, in Latvia I think. And so I started doing that and then, I got a job as a system security administrator, which was horrible. Yeah, it was horrendous. I was there for six months and then CME messaged me and said, Hey, do you wanna chat?

[00:10:29] Grant: And I was like, Please God, yes. Get me out of here. And I've been there since. 

[00:10:32] Zoe: That talk was really good actually. And the one where we met, uh, that you were presenting, uh, cuz you were talking about, um, 5g. You were talking about 5g. Oh yes. I really enjoyed that talk actually. So I, I'm kind of stealing the show, so jump in if you want, Chris.

[00:10:46] Zoe: But I think the, the other thing I was going to ask about is, I know that security likes to use military references in the media and we like to kind of compare it to the military, even though I have no military experience and a lots of people I know that do that have no military experience. Granted, there are a lot of friends that I have that are ex-military.

[00:11:07] Zoe: How would you say, do you think that having a job with military really did, uh, I don't know, give you insights that maybe a civilian background wouldn't have given you? 

[00:11:16] Grant: No. ? Um, no. Uh, don't get me wrong, it gave me some good skills. It gave me, like, I, I was not a people person. I mean, I'm still not, but I can like talk now.

[00:11:27] Grant: I can go up and, and like present, Like not, not leadership, I'm not a leader, but you know, those sort of like management ish style skills, like that stuff a hundred percent was brilliant and I've definitely taken that with me from the military. But anything else? No, if it's not a radio that's meh, . No idea. Amazing. 

[00:11:45] Chris: And now you do some like amateur radio and, and then P with electronics.

[00:11:49] Chris: You've kind of kept that going. And you also run the RF hacking village. At Defcon. So I mean, it sounds like at, at the very least, that was maybe spurred in the military or, or was that something that you, were you already into RF before you got exposed to it there, or, or was that the first time you saw how that stuff works?

[00:12:05] Grant: No, no, no. It was, it was in the military that I, that I got into it. But I will say the RF hacking Village is the UK RF hacking Village, not the DEFCON one there far better than me. I wish I could do their stuff. That would be amazing. 

[00:12:17] Chris: You heard it hear again, folks, if you want, uh, an RF wizard at DefCon Invite Grant.

[00:12:23] Grant: Yeah, please. Yeah. Oh yeah. Geez. Message me. So, yeah, it's, it's the UK version. It's like, um, it's like, you know, whenever you're at the supermarket and you want the RF Hacking Village and your mom's like, No, we've got RF Hacking Village at home. Mine's the one that's at home. It's worst. It's like off brand, you know?

[00:12:37] Grant: Yeah. The Army sort of sparked my interest in radio. But if there's anyone else who's been in the signals, who's been in communications, and you will know, you get handed a big lump of metal and a little manual with a flow chart that says, Press this button, do this, do this, do this. That's it. So it was only really after I'd left that I was like, you know what?

[00:12:54] Grant: I missed doing some stuff with radio. So I then became a, an amateur radio operator and doing the tests and the, and learning for the exams like the clubs will, will teach you and to pass the tests that I learned so much more than anything I ever learned in the Army. There was stuff that I learned in there and I realized like, you know, flashback five years ago, it twigged why the radio wasn't working that day because I was doing something really stupid but didn't know.

[00:13:20] Grant: And sit in this classroom going, Oh, if I had just like done this, that it would've worked. Yeah, def amateur radio clubs are a good place to learn. Radio, military, not so much . 

[00:13:29] Chris: Nice. Okay. Understood. And, and maybe, you know, exploring that thread of, I guess amateur radio clubs maybe aren't quite formal training or classrooms, but I think you do have some formal education as well.

[00:13:40] Chris: I believe you recently finished a post-graduate diploma in Applied Cybersecurity and part of that came down to you received a scholarship based on work and personal projects you have been doing. I mean, that, that's, so both of those things are really interesting to me. I wonder, maybe you start with telling us, You know, how you got this scholarship from work you were already doing, and then, you know, it's a topic that comes up a lot about, you know, college degrees and then how they help careers or, or not, and all that stuff.

[00:14:05] Chris: So I'd love to get into that as well. But, but maybe first just tell us a little bit more about this scholarship and, and how that worked out. 

[00:14:10] Grant: Sure. I keep going back to this. My wife, , so her, her dad, um, my father-in-law, he, he studied in Queens, the university that did the degree. And so he got like newsletters through of stuff they were doing, and one of them was about this cybersecurity degree and that they had scholarships to give away.

[00:14:27] Grant: He had obviously sent that to Katie. Katie was looking at it and me being the copycat that I am, I thought, Oh, I'll apply for that too. Katie has a like, formal education background. She's done uni degrees, she's done all this stuff, and I thought the worst I can say is no. I'll just try. So yeah, I submitted all of, all of the, um, sort of the work that I did, that I was, I was working in the, um, the consultancy company at the time.

[00:14:48] Grant: I had, I'd already started doing the talks and like, B-Sides London, I think I just wrapped that up. So sort of put that forward as to, you know, Trying to get out there in the community. And yeah, they, they accepted and gave me and Katie, uh, we both got the scholarships. 

[00:15:02] Chris: That's awesome. And then, I mean, so was it totally on a whim or, or was there, you know, kind of a, what was the motivation behind getting a degree?

[00:15:09] Chris: I mean, was that something that you just wanted to do personally? Something you think will advance your career, Just something that you, you know, wanted to do with your wife? I mean, maybe tell us more about the motivation there. 

[00:15:17] Grant: Yeah, it was, it was 100% for my ego. Uh, uh, all, all of Katie's friends had all been through, So of course whenever, you know, started going out with her, I was hanging around with all her friends and all of them, every single time they asked, So where did you study?

[00:15:31] Grant: I was like, I didn't, I have no qualifications. I left school with nothing like, like I failed so bad in school. And so whenever this came up, I thought, You know what, I'll, I'll try and, and see. Um, I, I thought it might be helpful as for like career and stuff, but there was no way that was the mean thing. It was, I've never been to uni.

[00:15:49] Grant: I'm, I'm gonna go this, this is my chance to, to go and do that. And then I can say, I've ticked the box,

[00:15:55] Zoe: Don't feel guilty. That is exactly what I went to college. I wanted that paper of somebody else validating. I knew what I was doing. Uh, it was, it was not. Cuz I'm like, Oh, I wanna go to college and spend all of my money.

[00:16:08] Zoe: It was, please tell me I'm good enough, . But, uh, so far I will say your wife has been very positive on your on your career path. 

[00:16:17] Grant: Oh, career. I, I would be upside my dad. Uh, I, I'd be, I'd be dead by now if it wasn't for her. I think 

[00:16:25] Zoe: Wildlife, she's brilliant. After you did your degree, do you think it had a big impact on your career or was it more, again, the personal side?

[00:16:35] Grant: Do you know what, it didn't have an impact on either. If, if anything, it sort of, I don't know, removed the, the rose tinted glasses of university because I thought, Oh yeah, this is, you know, it was a prestigious university, so I thought a cybersecurity course, it had been endorsed by GCHQ. You know, so, you know, lots of big names turn apart.

[00:16:54] Grant: I thought this is gonna be absolutely fantastic. I'm going to learn so much. It's going to be brilliant. No . It was terrible. I've had better courses in, um, tech, uh, I dunno, Community colleges. Would you call them in America? I think, 

[00:17:06] Zoe: I think so. I, I think that if I, compared to what I went to school for, I think it would qualify as a community college.

[00:17:12] Grant: Yeah. Yeah. So like, yeah, I've, I've had better courses through them. Yeah. So it was called Applied Cybersecurity. So to me, in my head it was okay, this is something that you could take what you learn and take it straight outta industry, you know, be useful to a company. But everything was very theory based.

[00:17:28] Grant: It was done by people who weren't actually in the industry. The information was out of date, It was, it was, it was appalling. Um, I, if you, if you look through my LinkedIn, you will see many rants every time they, uh, they reach out every year or so and say, Hey, can you give us a review or give us some feedback on the, on the degree?

[00:17:46] Grant: And they don't listen. And so I keep, I keep complaining about, No, that's too bad. So some of it was interesting. It was a forensics module. It was taught by someone who was in the industry, who actually worked with, at the consultancy company. Um, that was a nice surprise when I bumped into him. And his was fantastic cause you could tell he did it, you know, day in day out.

[00:18:02] Grant: I already had some great stories about it. He, he knew the information and then there was other modules. Like the, the software module. Um, I was sitting there, which, um, Katie, that was her bread and butter and we were sitting in the same room listening to the lecture. Cause it was during Covid, just as Covid started.

[00:18:17] Grant: And the amount of times that Katie went off was like, That's wrong. Don't listen to that bit. That's not how that works. The amount of times she was doing it, and she's not confrontational, so she wouldn't go on and say this to him, but you could see her getting aggravated by it. And the lecturer seemed more concerned with telling us how many big companies really wanted to hire him and how he's worked with this company and this company.

[00:18:36] Grant: I don't care about you. This isn't an interview. I don't care about your cv. I want to learn about secure coding. And so, yeah, it was not good , so remove that view. 

[00:18:45] Zoe: No, that's, that's a really good point though. That's a really good point though, because I think when I go to hire people and they apply whatever, even if they don't have any experience, like maybe, you know, for example, for interns, they're not gonna have, usually they're not gonna have hands on experience.

[00:19:00] Zoe: But I like to see how they apply things. You know, even just talking through their logic for example. When I'm hiring people from a college versus university, University tends to be a lot more academic and I don't know, it makes it a little bit harder for them, you know, because college, I feel like people are a little bit more hands on.

[00:19:16] Zoe: They have that practical side, and so that's really beneficial. I personally, actually was self taught through YouTube, so I, I don't think there's any school that you can go to that I'm gonna be like, because you went to that school, I'm gonna hire you. It's more. Because you applied yourself, and I understand that the logic you have, I think that's, that's more the attractive side, but, But that's a really good point from your perspective of be careful what classes you're taking because if they're so academic, they might actually not be as beneficial as you think.

[00:19:47] Zoe: Interesting. I like that. Wow. I don't like that. But , what is a good lesson? 

[00:19:52] Chris: It's good to know. It's good to see. Cuz I think there's a lot of folks we talk to who either skipped, you know, college or university in the US we don't differentiate as, as starkly between the two, As, as, as other places in the world.

[00:20:02] Chris: But anyway, if you don't go to, you know, higher education, then maybe, you know, you think you did the right thing, but you don't know, You're always kind of wondering, would I have learned more? What would've happened? And a lot of folks who haven't done it have these, like, this regret of like, Oh, you know, maybe I'm not as smart as I should be, or not as educated as I should be cause I didn't do it so, At least it's feeding my confirmation bias very well to, uh, to hear that you didn't have the greatest, you know, practical knowledge just imparted upon you. Yeah. 

[00:20:26] Zoe: I will clarify that. It's not that we, Okay, so I think not everywhere, but I do know in Europe, a lot of times college, you go to college after high school, what you would take a cycle and then, and then you go to uni. So a lot of times you do, but in North America it's college or uni. It's not one and then the other.

[00:20:44] Zoe: That's how it works there. Right, Right. That's kind of the difference. Uh, the college I went to was equivalent to like a community college kind of setup. 

[00:20:52] Chris: So kind of jumping back a little bit, I know you know, Zoe asked a little bit about how you got into kind of cyber security and your current roles and, and we talked about.

[00:20:59] Chris: You know, you were doing some like little repair jobs and, and then moved in, you know, from there and kinda got exposed to cybersecurity through the IT lens. I'd like to go even further back if we can, and just, you know, why technology, what, you know, where did that come from? You know, why were you working on computers in the first place and why were you interested in moving into it?

[00:21:16] Chris: Where did that kind of, how did you even hear about it or know about it or, and then how did you know that was interesting to you? 

[00:21:21] Grant: So, yeah, I was. Short, skinny, not athletic, and wore glasses. So I spent most of my time inside and played on computers. The first computer I remember we had was like a Packard Bell.

[00:21:36] Grant: Do you know, remember the big clunky like orange or like yellow off white Cason? I think it was like, it was the other Windows 95 or Windows 98. I can't remember. And I remember that. And like playing games on it and stuff like that. And anytime it broke. It was me and my brother would've hit it. We had no idea what we were doing, but you know, we, we managed to get it working.

[00:21:56] Grant: And, um, that was, yeah, that was it. I was, I was sort of hooked. I was into playing games really. And then just from playing games on the computer to that sort of then evolved into, well, if it breaks, it's gonna cost money to fix. Well, can I fix it? And it, it just sort of devolved from there. So, yeah, I'm gonna blame Dungeon Keeper.

[00:22:13] Grant: As the first game, I remember having a like actually properly playing. So I'm gonna blame Bullfrog for all of this. I think it's their fault. 

[00:22:20] Zoe: Ah, that's a good, uh, thing to be blamed for. Blame your wife for success. Blame the games for a career choice. I like it. Throughout your career, has there been a time where you're like, I'm really good at this, or I'm really not good at this, and kind of how did you use that to direct yourself a little bit?

[00:22:39] Grant: I don't think I've ever thought either. I've, I've always thought of myself as being like average, like right in the middle. Not good. I'm not, I'm not terrible. Yeah. I mean, I, I, I question my ability like daily. Um, we did, we do a lot of coding and stuff and a couple of days ago I was trying to do a for loop and, um, it was, it was sort of like, you know, for x in this list and I was just checking that the list contains stuff, so I went to print X, but I printed it in quote, So it's just a string.

[00:23:09] Grant: So whenever I hit it, I just got a whole lot of X's on the screen. Stupid mistake. It took me 20 minutes to figure out why that was happening and afterwards I went, I got a cup of coffee and I was like, What am I doing in my life? , Why is this, this really the career for me? So, yeah, it was validated a bit.

[00:23:26] Grant: Cause I sent it as a screenshot into our, into the team's group chat, and I was like, Hmm, can you see what I did wrong? And, um, one of the other team members was like, Uh, no, that looks fine. So , I'm not the only one who missed it. . 

[00:23:38] Zoe: Oh, don't worry. That's, that's basically my entire day. Every day I'm like, It's not working.

[00:23:41] Zoe: It's not working. It's working. Why is it working? ? 

[00:23:45] Grant: Yeah. Sometimes it's more concerning when it works. First time. Oh yeah. And they're like, Nah, something not right here. But yeah, I don't, I don't think there's ever been a point where I'm like, Yeah, I'm really good at this. No, . 

[00:23:57] Chris: That's interesting. I mean, obviously, you know, the title of our show is Imposter Syndrome.

[00:24:01] Chris: I wonder if you've thought about that at all, or is, is it just, is it just straight up humility or where you're just kind of a naturally humble person, or, or is there a little bit of imposter syndrome there? Which I, I think it affects a lot of us who work with our minds every day in, in how you think about that.

[00:24:16] Grant: Yeah. I mean, I, I think a good example of of the imposter syndrome actually happened today. If you look on the, I think it's on my YouTube somewhere, there's a little device that I mailed out made called a, a pumpkin pie, a wifi Pumpkin Pie. It's a little, little wireless device thing. And Hackaday did an article about.

[00:24:33] Grant: And it, it came through today and it popped up on my feed. And my first thought when I seen the title of like, you know, Pumpkin Pie, I was like, Someone stole the name of my thing. At no point did it cross my mind that they were writing about me , even whenever I went into it. And I was like, That looks familiar.

[00:24:49] Grant: And I was like, Oh, . So, yeah, I, I just, I thought it was ironic that we have this call today and I was like that, I thought that was quite a good example. It did not register my brain at all until I was in the article that it could have been me. 

[00:25:01] Zoe: That makes me laugh because I, as I said, I watched your talk about 5G and I really enjoyed it.

[00:25:07] Zoe: And I would say that actually you excel quite a bit at that. And, uh, so I find it interesting because when I met, You came across to me as quite a confident person and really good at what you did, and I find it interesting that you, I don't think you see what I saw as an external person. 

[00:25:22] Grant: No, not at all.

[00:25:24] Grant: Yeah, no, I like, like in work, I, I, I do really well in work. I've, you know, I've gotten promoted quite regularly. The leadership team are all happy with me. And, um, last time I was talking to someone else who, who was in management, I, I sent them a gift of Homer spinning in the chair in front of the control panel and I was like, this is what I feel like I do all day.

[00:25:41] Grant: I, I don't know what you are seeing that I don't work for like half of the day. I dunno what you are seeing me do here. I don't get it. . 

[00:25:52] Chris: Well, we think you're awesome, Grant. Uh, it sounds like a lot of other people do as well, although, I am sorry to say we are. Running out of time for today. So Grant, thank you for sharing your story with the Imposter syndrome Network.

[00:26:04] Chris: Also, a huge thank you to all of the imposters out there tuning in. We love sharing these stories with you. If you enjoyed the chat, please do consider sharing the podcast with a friend, a family member, a colleague, or anyone looking to begin or advance their career in technology before we shut down, Grant, I do have one more question for you.

[00:26:24] Chris: I'm wondering what's the most valuable lesson? You've learned in your career so far? 

[00:26:30] Grant: The worst someone can say is no. I think not, not to drag this on any longer, but I have a reputation in work of being the person who just sort of does things. And it's because I ask, I just, I just go to someone like, Hey, can we do this?

[00:26:41] Grant: Or We need to do this. Cause the worst they can say is no. So yeah, I think just, yeah, just ask people things. You'd be surprised how many times you'll get away with it. . 

[00:26:51] Chris: I like that. I think that is really powerful. For sure. Do you have any projects that we haven't mentioned that you'd like us know about? I mean, I guess it sounds like the pumpkin pie should be something we link to in the show notes for sure.

[00:27:01] Chris: That sounds really cool. I'm gonna check it out. Anything else going on that, that the Imposter Network should know 

[00:27:05] Grant: about? Uh, uh, Info sec Battle Bots. That sounds interesting. Yeah, it's, uh, it's not me. I'm sort of helping. A little bit. The guy is basically making like robot wars or battle bots that you have in America.

[00:27:17] Grant: He's making that for InfoSec. He brings like a small, well it's quite big, um, like arena with him to conferences and you can play about, it's in, uh, UK and Europe at the minute, and I'm helping him build it a hacker class where you can actually like, use some electronic warfare and hack the robots as well as fight them.

[00:27:33] Grant: So I'm helping 'em with that. So that's quite interesting, I think. 

[00:27:36] Chris: Awesome. Well, what's the best way for folks to find you if they wanna reach out and, and have a chat or so. 

[00:27:41] Grant: Twitter probably I'm, I'm Brains, 9 33 on basically all social media. If you find a brains 9 33, it's, it's likely me. 

[00:27:48] Chris: Awesome. We will be back next week.