As I continue on my journey of learning and refinement as a programmer, I find it helpful to identify specific objectives to strive for. This blog post represents my initial attempt to narrow down some of the key qualities and characteristics that define a good programmer. While this topic is inherently subjective and there is much more to explore, I hope that by sharing my thoughts on this subject, I can contribute to a larger conversation about what it takes to excel in this field. Ultimately, my goal is to continually sharpen my craft and become the best programmer I can be. I’d love to hear your thoughts after reading.
Good programmers are more than just skilled coders – they have a unique mindset that sets them apart. Good programmers have a set of traits and characteristics that define their success. This post will delve into 5 key qualities that I've observed in the good programmers I've had the pleasure of working with.
Good programmers believe in themselves.
Good programmers have a strong belief in themselves and their abilities. They know that they have the skills and knowledge to tackle any problem that comes their way, and they approach every challenge with confidence and determination. If they don’t already have the skills required to complete a task, they are always ready to learn and grow as they go. This self-assurance allows them to take risks and try new things, even when the outcome is uncertain.
Good programmers embrace failure.
Good programmers understand that failure is an inevitable part of the learning process. They embrace failure as an opportunity to learn and grow, and they use it as a chance to reflect on what went wrong and how they can improve in the future. This attitude allows them to bounce back from setbacks and continue making progress in their careers.
Good programmers deliver user value.
Good programmers understand that the ultimate goal of their work is to deliver value to users. They realize that this is what drives the success of their projects. When users are satisfied with the software they use, they are more likely to continue using it, recommend it to others, and provide positive feedback. This leads to increased adoption and satisfaction, which in turn leads to more business value and success for the organization. Additionally, good programmers also understand that delivering value to users is simply the right thing to do. By creating software that meets the needs and expectations of users, they are able to have a positive impact on people's lives and make a difference in the world.
Good programmers work smarter to work harder.
Good programmers understand that working smarter is key to working harder and being more productive. They don't waste time on unnecessary tasks or over-optimize their work, but instead look for ways to streamline their processes and increase their efficiency. This might mean learning new tools or techniques that automate mundane tasks, or finding ways to optimize their workflow to reduce the time and effort required to complete a project. Good programmers are always thinking of ways to increase their speed of delivery without sacrificing quality.
Good programmers question everything.
Good programmers are always questioning everything, including their own assumptions and beliefs. They respect and possess strong opinions, but they also understand that these opinions are always subject to revision based on new evidence and insights. They don't blindly follow convention for the sake of convention, but rather are pragmatic in their decision making, always seeking to understand the underlying reasons and trade-offs behind different approaches. This habit of questioning and critical thinking allows good programmers to identify and solve problems more effectively, and to continuously improve and evolve their work. It also helps them stay open-minded and flexible, ready to adapt to changing circumstances and needs.
To summarize, good programmers have confidence, embrace failure, and are driven by curiosity and determination. They prioritize delivering value to users and continuously seek to improve their work.
To all the programmers out there reading this: keep up the great work! Being a programmer can be challenging at times, but it's also a rewarding and fulfilling career. If you already feel like a “good programmer” by my ideas, keep kicking ass. However, don't be discouraged if you don't feel like a "good programmer" yet – remember that skills and qualities like confidence, curiosity, and determination can be developed and honed over time. Keep learning, practicing, and growing, and you'll be amazed at what you can achieve. You have the potential to make a real difference in the world through your work, so keep pushing yourself and never stop striving to be the best programmer you can be.