Join LinkedIn Learning Developer Instructor for an in-depth discussion in this video Learning and obtaining new skills, part of Career Clinic: Developer Insights.
- In my career I feel like I've reinvented myself a number of times. I started out editing books. I've been a developer. I've done a number of other different roles, and I feel like for me part of that has been about being open to trying new things. Just cultivating an attitude that this is something I can do, or this is something I'd like to try. For me, part of the journey has been cultivating the openness to taking risks and to taking prudent risks.
I'm not going to do super crazy things, but trying things out. Recognizing that things might not pan out, but it's not a judgment on me. I feel like it's super important to keep building those skills. And I know everyone says that, and it's almost a truism at this point in programming. But, for instance, for me, you know, I started out coding HTML when HTML was the only game in town. And we were sticking attributes in our tags to try and affect the width and the height of things to put background colors on things. Now I had stepped away for a couple years from coding, and when I came back all of a sudden there's this thing called CSS.
And so the language had totally changed. All those attributes were deprecated, were no longer used. And so the language, especially in front-end development is changing all the time. It's improving all the time, and it's really kind of come into its own front-end development, I feel like, as a programming discipline in just very recent years. - Besides learning the things you need to know to do your job, learn other things that have to do with your job but maybe aren't directly related. For example, there's a big controversy people keep talking about.
Should designers know how to code and should developers know how to design? And you can go on either side of that, but really the bottom line is a person who knows more things is always going to be more valuable than a person who knows less things. So by adding on different knowledge, whether it's directly or indirectly related to what you do, that's going to make you a more valuable employee when it comes time for raises or promotions or looking for a new job. And it will give you a lot more choices in the type of work you can do. So always think it's good for developers to understand user-experienced design, because instead of just, you know, taking a design that the designer has handed you and writing the code for it, there's actually a lot of opportunities for you to improve the accessibility and the usability of the user's experience through the way you write your code.
So by understanding the design side of it, you don't need to be an expert on it, but just understanding the basics of it you can create a better product with the work that you're doing. - If you're starting in this field, I think one of the advices here is that don't try to get too fanatic of the technology. Because that technology will probably change, and if you get too fanatic, then again, you will get frustrated, and we don't want that. We don't want frustration in our shops. And there is no need for that frustration here.
So I think that we can do that if we embrace all the changes that are coming and just learning new stuff and embrace the learning. You will never stop learning here, so embrace that, and then I think you will be happy. I think it's an interesting field to work in. - I also recently got certified as a Microsoft Solutions Developer, because I think it's important to always be a lifelong learner. So I was back to being a student and preparing for all of my courses.
So the plus side of that is that I got to brush up on all of the latest technologies, and I'm applying all of those in my day-to-day work.