Not everyone is cut out to be a manager, even though that’s one of the go-to ways that companies reward good work.
“It’s kind of crummy when the only way a company has to reward a good developer is to make them a manager,” said Monetate engineering director Elise Wei, “because it’s a totally different skillset.”
That’s why Wei said to make sure there’s a clear path for growth at the company where you work. (Wei manages a team of developers at Monetate. She said she enjoys it.)
Wei spoke at Girl Develop It’s “Day in the Life of a Developer” event earlier this month to a crowd of about sixty. It’s part of the nonprofit’s ongoing “Day in the Life” series. The next one is a Day in the Life of a Founder/Owner on June 2.
Here’s advice from the four other speakers at the event:
Cella Sum, developer at Big Cartel
Find a job at a company that values you, Sum said. Demand is high for developers right now, so you should feel empowered to find a company that can advocate for you, support you in your learning and help you grow.
Yash Prabhu, Android team lead at Drama Fever
“I wish I had mentors when I started off,” said Prabhu. “I wish I had this community.”
Prabhu, who went to an engineering college in Bangalore, India, said that in school, a lot of women started out in engineering but they slowly dropped off.
She suggested attending hackathons, conference and local meetups to get involved with the tech scene. Also, she said, learn Git and Github.
LeeAnn Kinney, front end developer at Bayada Home Health Care
Ask for help. People want to help, Kinney said. If you have a problem, try to get as far as you can on your own and then ask turn to someone else.
Alexandra Hoefinger, developer at Urban Outfitters
Not all coding education books are created equally, Hoefinger said, so if you’re teaching yourself, ask for recommendations.
Also: don’t take yourself too seriously, she said. “It’s always good to have some cat gifs in your back pocket. You never know when it’ll be time to take them out.”
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