You Are Paid to Solve Problems, Not Write Code

Solving Problems is Your Job

Most developers fall in love with writing code and making computers bend to their will….and of course solve problems.  But the reality is that most developers are paid to solve problems, which means much more that bringing coding skills to the table.

The successful programmer must learn much more than how to code to be successful:

  • The ability to communicate (very important!)
  • The ability to listen effectively
  • The ability to identify the problems
  • The ability to apply logic to solve a problem
  • And, finally, the ability to code efficiently in order to solve problems

You Can’t Code in a Vacuüm

After applying all the skills you need to acquire, you still have to interact with others in a way that helps you succeed:

  • Working with your co-workers, client, and project manager
  • Keeping track of your time and effort
  • Commenting in your code to allow others to follow/improve/fix it
  • Learning the tools (and improving them) that allow you to interact effectively
  • Setting and meeting expectations with your client(s) and team

Keeping up with the Jones’s

Don’t forget that to do your job, you need to keep up to date with your skills:

  • Attend seminars to learn and to network
  • Read and apply new techniques
  • Study communication skills
  • Improve personal relationship skills

Improve your management skills

Most coders (sadly, say some) eventually move into management.  That’s another whole set of skills that use many of the skills outlined above, so the transition will not be that difficult to master should you take that path.  What do you need to make that leap?

  • Study management techniques
  • Develop interpersonal skills
  • Learn how to become a mentor
  • Learn how to manage and support a team

As you can see, coding is just one important skill set of many if you want to be a successful programmer.  Just as you’ve learned to code, you need to now set new goals to be the best coder you be.

Good Luck!

Inspiration for this post came from Hacker Noon:  You Are Not Paid to Write Code – Hacker Noon

The best advice I ever got was that knowledge is power and to keep reading.

David Bailey

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