Join LinkedIn Learning Developer Instructor for an in-depth discussion in this video Starting a business, part of Career Clinic: Developer Insights.
- So I have seen at one of the major technology companies, they have a group of people who review resumes once they've gotten past the technical recruiters. And this is how they determine who's going to come in for an in-person interview. And because it's a larger group of people making the decision, it's not a snap judgment by one person who has a binary decision tree that says if this person has a piece of paper that says that they can do this then they're good. And if they don't then they're bad. Everybody has diverse opinions and it makes for a much richer experience.
- The most exciting thing that's upcoming for me is a nonprofit that I'm starting called When Doves Code inspired by Prince, my favorite artist, but also inspired by my love of coding and my love of teaching. So I consider the fact that I focus on middle and high school kids, and teachers, I think they're all my doves. And I want to give this skill of coding to them as I'm now at a point in my career where I'm close to exiting.
So I feel very excited about creating this nonprofit to solve a problem, but to also fulfill what I think is an obligation that I have to pass the torch to someone. And teachers have to teach the next generation of coders, so I have to pass the torch on to them to keep the teaching going. And I have to pass it on to kids, 'cause they're curious and they're here and this is their time to learn, too. It's the best time to start learning this skill.
- You know, there was an app I made that's on the App Store now called Afterparty. And I thought it was going to be successful enough that I created a business based around it. And it didn't take off the way I wanted it to, but I think it's important to point out that if you ever are feeling passionate about starting a company based on something that you've developed or something that you've created, make sure you're really, really in tune with what your passion is. Because if your passion is writing code, it might not be true that you're also going to like running your business. And you might want to find somebody that's going to help you handle that when you're, you know, handling the business aspect of what you're doing.
Consider, you know, for instance, the last major company I worked for, you know, people that were passionate about coding and software development, they ended up dealing with, you know, contracts and things like this, things that are just not related to what they wanted to be doing. Starting a business can be a very fun experience, but make sure you're doing what your heart is in. Otherwise you can get very discouraged very quickly. - If you're going to go out on your own, you're going to have to grab your backpack and throw a lot of skills in there that don't have anything to do with code. So, just basic business skills.
For me, I went and worked for Starbucks for almost eight years, nine years and learned the business aspect of running a coffee shop. I knew after that that I wanted nothing to do ever again with a coffee shop (chuckles). But I learned a lot of skills that translated over to my web development business. So cash flow, cost of goods, all of those sorts of things. So where do you go to learn those, really? Like go find someone who's doing what you want to do and tag along and see if they'll let you just sort of into their world.
Ask questions. Observe and then take what works for you and go for it.