1) Never be afraid to ask questions.

There are so many instances of situations where assumptions have been made that shouldn’t have been made, resulting in an oversight that could have been rectified earlier in a process and wasn’t.

Just because no one’s asking a question doesn’t mean you’re the only person who has it.

That being said, it’s really important to figure out how to ask questions. Provide enough context so that the audience for your question understands what you’re really asking. If you’re trying to troubleshoot a problem, list out the steps you’ve already tested and what those outcomes were.

2) When you’ve learned something, try to write about it. Try to break it down as though you were explaining it to a child. It’s through breaking down a concept into its most simple terms that you really know that you understand it.

3) Don’t feel like you have to code *all of the time*. Just because this is what you’re doing for a living doesn’t mean that you have to make it your life. Burnout is real, and it happens a lot faster if it’s all you do.

4) Find hobbies outside of tech!

5) Network. There are a number of great communities. I volunteer for and am a member of Virtual Coffee, and can vouch for that community being particularly friendly and approachable.

6) Don’t let a company pay you less than industry standard and convince you that they’re doing you the favor of employing you.

7) Negotiate salary. Always.

8) If you’re a career transitioner, don’t be afraid to talk about your previous work and how it gave you experience that you can use in programming. There’s a whole lot of jobs that require time management, multi-tasking, critical thinking, etc. Those skills are relevant no matter where you got them.

9) If it takes a while for you to get a gig, it’s not necessarily a reflection on you or your abilities.

10) Despite what some people would say, coding’s not for everyone. Don’t feel like you have to continue down a road just because you started walking down it. Life’s not a straight path.

Add Comment