Finding a Win-Win in Difficult Situations

There are some extremely smart and creative people in the tech world. Surprisingly, many of them struggle with the simple concept of finding a win-win situation when adversity strikes.

I’ve observed that it’s common for developers to see a difficult circumstance as a win-lose, lose-win, or worse yet, a lose-lose proposition. These situations can seem scary, but they can also provide a great opportunity to grow a relationship. In my experience, people remember how adversity was handled, not that it occurred. Read more on Finding a Win-Win in Difficult Situations…

On Becoming a Wizard: Strategies for Keeping Up as a New Developer

I graduated with my computer science degree just over a year ago. I had learned what I thought was a lot about backend, “heavyweight” C-based development, and I assumed I’d be using those skills on the job, while learning new things that were unique to the consulting trade. I had a few acquaintances who were web developers, and I’d come to think of web development as a lightweight version of what I’d learned in school. This turned out not to be the case.
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Finding Your Path to a Second Career in Software Development

When I went back to school to pursue a bachelor’s degree in computer science, I found that I wasn’t alone. Even though I already had one degree and a few years of work experience, I went to study groups where I was the youngest person in the room.

Lots of people are investing in a second career, and for good reason. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, computer and IT occupations are slated to grow almost twice as fast as the national average and pay more than twice as much. The the ratio of open jobs to new grads with CS degrees is 10:1. Read more on Finding Your Path to a Second Career in Software Development…

Two Resources for Introducing Young Developers to Testing and Quality

At Atomic, we’re doing a great job of taking on and training up new grads to be excellent developers through our Accelerator program. I recently gave a talk to introduce them to some testing concepts and quality attributes that they should be thinking about in their work. Read more on Two Resources for Introducing Young Developers to Testing and Quality…

The Mental Stages of Programming

The other evening, I was figuring out how to implement something on a personal project. While I was working, I was also texting my thoughts to my significant other. In the span of roughly 30 minutes, I sent him a series of messages that demonstrated my mental stages of working through a programming problem in a humorous (and possibly dramatic) fashion, and I wanted to share them here.
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Three Tips for a Positive, Effective Team from Casey Watts

I recently heard the excellent talk “A Neurobiologist’s Guide to Mind Manipulation” by Casey Watts at EmberConf. Part of the talk focused on techniques for keeping a positive attitude, so no one shuts down or shies away from discussion during the project.

Basically, having positive, active teammates leads to a more effective team. Here are a few of the tips I took away from this talk.
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Book Review – Influencer: The New Science of Leading Change

I appreciate books that provide an easy-to-remember, visual framework for the key points. Influencer: The New Science of Leading Change, Second Edition is one of those books. The framework is a six-quadrant grid meant to help identify ways to influence key behaviors in ourselves and others. Read more on Book Review – Influencer: The New Science of Leading Change…

Tips for Making Persuasive Arguments

We can all agree that making persuasive arguments is both exceedingly critical to collaboration and exceedingly difficult. Thus, I’ve been delighted to work through a book on persuasion–The 7 Triggers to Yes. It’s a new favorite of mine, and in this post, I’ll share the seven triggers, discuss one in more detail, and describe some of the other great content in the book. Read more on Tips for Making Persuasive Arguments…