Software development is now a popular career choice. Its respectable salary, critical-thinking requirements, and stability as a career make it a tempting career path to follow for any tech-savvy person. However, coding can often be an intimidating wall to overcome. Thankfully, the developer community is one of the friendliest in the online world. Here are some tips for aspiring developers from seasoned programmers
Practice Your Craft
As with any skill, practice makes perfect. For a technical field that requires tons of repetition, practice often comes from first-hand experience. The software has streamlined the process. Now, practice is more about knowing how to use your tools than learning from the ground up.
Practice improves your speed over time. The more you repeat tasks, the less you have to correct yourself in the future.
Patience is a Virtue
Learn how to deal with your impatience by focusing on the task at hand. If a certain segment of code is too time-consuming, try researching ways to streamline it. A lot of code can end up unwieldy and long due to the lack of research. Always look for ways to make your code as concise and functional as possible. Boredveterans, often just research new projects to work on.
Despite what some people might think, passion is important in this field. It’s not just staring at a screen and pressing a few buttons. You should be passionate about the field of your work. Work is easier when you love what you do. When you choose projects, prioritize 3 things:
First, make sure it interests you. Even if it may seem dull, do your research on a project and if the solutions involved interest you. Second, how much active input does it need? Your work should be engaging and have you learning new things. Lastly, how much you’re getting paid for it. It’s hard to be passionate if you’re worried about your bills. Pick a project that compensates you fairly. Passion informs those hiring you of your commitment to the job.
Learn From Mistakes
Mistakes are inevitable in such a complicated field. Don’t get discouraged too easily. Mistakes are not only expected in software development but encouraged in certain circumstances. Quality Assurance, for example, is just making mistakes on purpose. You can’t know how to improve your code unless you know what it lacks.
Mistakes also offer unique insights that wouldn’t be possible if you kept doing things “correctly”. It lets you find new ways to improve a process. Make the most out of your mistake by documenting your process. It could come in handy in the future.
Learn Your Tools
From operating systems to programming languages, make sure you have an in-depth knowledge of your dev tools. There’s no harm in taking the time to dig for new ways to use your tools.
Operating systems offer a lot of commands that are unknown to the average user. These commands make your workflow more efficient. Programming languages have huge libraries of information to break down. Use these libraries to learn as much as you can about your main programming languages.
Be a Team Player
Nowadays, it’s rare to be the lone software developer. Even if you are, not every aspect is your responsibility. Expect to work with a team of different people. Prepare yourself to be as friendly and helpful as you can. Coding is a team effort in the business world. You can be the world’s best coder, but there are some projects you just can’t do by yourself.
Learning to be a team player is important for several reasons. You can learn new things from your teammates. They may offer you insights that you would have missed out on alone. Good teamwork also makes projects go by a lot faster than solo work. With proper communication and team chemistry, project duration is usually cut down. Being a team player is also key to becoming a top consultant if that happens to be a part of your long-term goal
Build Solutions, Not Just Code
You may be competent at coding now, but programming is not all about one’s technical abilities. You don’t use code for its own sake. The goal is to make solutions to problems. Whether it’s a business program or a video game, you need to think about the bigger picture. Don’t just put out fires as they arrive. Think of the project at large and list goals.
When building solutions, make sure to document them. You never know when you can apply it to other projects. Make sure your solution is noted as yours. These accomplishments help build your resume and reputation.
Keep It Simple
A lot of new software developers tend to take on too many tasks. Promising to do too much can lead to burnout. While it’s great to have ambition, development isn’t always going to be about big picture plans. Sometimes, a workflow needs to be streamlined before anything else.
Remember, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. Sometimes, you just need to keep it rolling.