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Hackernoon logoHow Software Developers Can Overcome Common Career Hurdles by@catelawrence

How Software Developers Can Overcome Common Career Hurdles

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@catelawrenceCate Lawrence

Tech writer and journalist

It’s January, and most of you have probably enjoyed a break from work
over the festive season. Less time coding and more time gaming or film
watching. All that time with colleagues is replaced with family, friends
and pets rather than coworkers. But it’s Monday, and the working week
is back with a vengeance. Did you return to your job this week with
feeling is enthusiasm or dread?

The beginning of the year can be a time of reckoning. You might be
considering looking for a new job. Or taking steps towards the next
level in your career. Or moving into another sector altogether. Here at
Codemotion, we’re here to help. We have a dedicated track at our
conferences to career development. We also have a platform dedicated to community meetups. These are great places to sharpen your skills and find out about jobs in your sector. Let’s take a look at some resources from speakers from the Codemotion conference series:

1. When you’re a junior developer and frustrated by job rejections

Many people are working in tech who arrived from other careers or degrees. Berta Devant is one of them, juggling a career in photography with learning to code, eventually becoming an engineer. She shared with us about the challenge of getting a foot in the door as a junior developing noting,

“There is a common misconception that junior developers
are a burden and won’t be delivering value for the first months or even

Berta experienced a struggle many of us are familiar with. She was
applying for jobs that come with a grocery list of job requirements,
most of which require years of experience. More than one employer told
her “Just come back again in three years”

She shared:

“One thing that got to me after being a developer for
like an actual company with a team for about a year and a half now I
realized that half of my job more than half of all the time it’s not
even code, it’s about people and it’s about learning."

2. You’re part of a team with infighting

Conflict at work can be a distraction from doing actual work, and
offer plenty of entertainment value and fodder for gossip. Still,
ultimately conflicts are destructive and can result in lost jobs, lost
reputations and lost credibility. However, Lea Böhm, CEO – AllesRoger UG
encourages workplaces to take a different look at workplace conflict.
Avoiding it might not be the answer – or quitting. She notes:

“Always after quitting a job I looked back and was thinking to myself what is it that learnt from that experience was what is it that I could have done differently maybe to not leaving this situation but just make it better for myself so then another job.”

Whether its teams fighting over slack or leaving disparaging comments
in GitHub, there might be a way forward. Find out how you can embrace
conflict resolution and build a bridge between warring teammates. You
can also view Lea’s slides.

3. You’re struggling to keep your knowledge up to date

We’re in an era where innovation cycles are evolving at a faster
speed than any other time in modern history. As a developer, the
challenge is not only to maintain your knowledge but anticipate and
prepare for what comes next.

Dennis Nerush took a critical, detailed look last year at how developers can keep learning, positioning devs as expert beginners. He offers a series of
takeaway strategies including:

“I have a board of sticky notes, and I add a term every time I hear something at the office, but I don’t really understand -some framework or some buzzword whatever. Later, when I have time, I google it and try to understand what they mean. Usually, I find my answers in different blog posts.”

Take a look to see what other kinds of resources are crucial to developer learning. You can also follow along with Dennis’ slides

4. You’re new to managing a team

Alessandro Cinelli asserts that:

“Becoming an engineering manager or a leader organizational leader is not a promotion, it’s a total career change.”

He shares his belief that being an engineering manager is not cool
and the value of the servant-leader style of leadership. He also offers
some great ideas tools and tips to get team feedback and insights – the
two monitor story is particularly memorable! Watch to see if an engineer
manager should code.

5. You’re sick of working at a job for a soulless organisation

Dr Melanie Rieback is the CEO/Co-founder of Radically Open Security, the world’s first non-profit computer security consultancy company. She presented a fantastic talk last year at Codemotion Rome
about post-growth entrepreneurship. She challenges the ideology of
profit and asks why there haven’t been walkouts of business school or
startup incubators. Take a look for a deep dive into social
entrepreneurship and how you could change your life – and industry –
with a new kind of enterprise:


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