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uProfile May 2024 - Dhanesh Kumar MJ

Embarking on a Journey of Growth: Helping the Umbraco Community

Dhanesh Kumar MJ
Written by Dhanesh Kumar MJ

In this month's uProfile we feature Dhanesh Kumar MJ, a Senior Software Developer at Phases Aps in Kerala, India. Dhanesh has actively contributed to the Umbraco Community, transitioning from personal growth to community support. He engages through code contributions, organizing meetups, forums replies and mentoring. Let's dive in and learn more about Dhanesh.

  • Name: Dhanesh Kumar MJ
  • Pronouns: He/Him
  • Company name: Phases Aps
  • Role: Senior Software Developer
  • Country/region: Kerala, India
  • Working with Umbraco for: 6 years


Dhanesh Kumar MJ

A valuable learning experience

My journey into the Umbraco Community began with a simple curiosity and a desire to enhance my skills. What started as a quest for personal growth and learning, quickly transformed into a sharing experience. I found myself immersed in a supportive ecosystem filled with passionate individuals eager to share their knowledge and insights. Contributing to this dynamic community became irresistible, driven by a desire to give back and help others grow. Contributing to the community not only helps it grow but also creates new talents in Umbraco, which I'm eager to be a part of.

Screen shot of a virtual Umbraco Meetup Kerala, showing 50+ attendees.

Screen shot of a virtual Umbraco Meetup Kerala, with 50+ Umbracians in attendance.

Community contributions

Since joining the Umbraco Community, learning so much from my peers, I wanted to be able to contribute back and bring people together. I contribute to the Umbraco community in various ways:

  • Code Contribution: I actively contribute code to Umbraco on GitHub, through pull requests.
  • Organizing Meetups/Events: I am an active participant and host of the Umbraco User Group Kerala. Helping the team organize meetups and events to bring the community together. Our virtual Umbraco Meetups have been a hit with attendees.
  • Forum and Discord Engagement: I participate in discussions on Umbraco forums and Discord channels to share knowledge and help others. I enjoy the discussion and the feeling of being able to help my fellow Umbraco developers.
  • Training: I offer support and mentorship to my colleagues and new talent in other companies, helping them learn and grow their knowledge base in Umbraco.

Favourite Umbraco moments

My favourite memory is when I train and support others, seeing people learn new things, who are then happy and grateful for that new found nugget of knowledge - especially when I can help teach experienced, seasoned Umbraco developers.

Getting positive feedback from fellow Umbraco folk for the help I have given and seeing smiles on their faces is really rewarding. Also, when I help people by replying to their questions in forums or Discord channels, understanding that it makes a difference for people, that's a happy moment for me.

Dhanesh taking the lead as a session speaker at an online meetup

Dhanesh talking all things Umbraco as a session speaker at an online meetup

What is it about the Umbraco Community that keeps me coming back for more?

I keep coming back to the Umbraco Community because of its warm and welcoming atmosphere. The helpful responses I get when I have questions spurs me on to provide the same to others. I think this helps create a helpful, friendly, thriving community, which I love being a part of.

The Current things I'm working on

In my day-to-day work at Phases, I am focused on an API project for Umbraco cloud that connects smoothly with various apps for a major company. I'm also leading a team to develop a product using Umbraco, which is really exciting.

As ever, for my community work, I am always planning and organising the next meetups with the rest of the Umbraco User Group Kerala. As-well-as spending my free time submitting pull requests, contributing code and helping others.

How would I recommend joining the Community?

Engage with the Community: Don't be shy! Join forums, attend meetups and connect with other Umbraco users. The community is incredibly welcoming and supportive, and you'll learn a lot by sharing experiences and asking questions. I know I did.

Start Small and Learn: Always take it one step at a time. Start with simple projects and gradually work your way up. Don't hesitate to explore the documentation and tutorials available online to enhance your skills. There is so much great information out there to help get started.

Certifications and training: Enrol for Umbraco training and & take certifications, this will give you more confidence & clarity.

Experiment and Have Fun: Umbraco is a flexible platform that encourages creativity. Don't be afraid to experiment with different features and functionalities. The more you play around with it, the more you'll learn and discover what works best for you. Enjoy the process and have fun while building awesome projects! That has been my favourite part of working with Umbraco, seeing just what it can do.

Dhanesh and his future wife, Vrindha, at their engagement celebration. Both are sat opposite on another, smiling and holding hands.

Dhanesh and his future wife, Vrindha, at their engagement celebration.

Future plans and life goals

I aim to continue leading a meaningful life filled with adventures and mindfulness, as I currently do. I want to explore new things, nurture my spiritual side through meditation, and cherish quality time with my loved ones. Traveling with them is definitely on the list too! Oh, and I'm always eager to learn and improve, especially when it comes to new technologies, as well as enhancing my personal skills in ways that resonate with my life. 

Additionally, I'm excited about my marriage this year, as it adds another beautiful dimension to my journey.

Image of Dhanesh's desk at work, showing two monitors displaying code and the Umbraco back office log in screen.

Dhanesh's work desk.

Other fun facts to share

Inline with my ongoing endeavour for spiritual growth I am currently reading Man's Search for Meaning, Bhagahavd Gita. When I'm at my desk I enjoy listening to music, such as Adharam Madhuram Krishna Bhajan, Bhakti Song. And some of my favourite moments are getting together and eating food with my dearest ones.

A fun party trick I seem to have mastered is the art of mimicking the sound of a boiling kettle, right when the water reached the perfect boiling point, "buluu..buluu..". 😃

Stay in touch!

You can connect with me on X, Instagram and LinkedIn, but you can also find me on Github


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