Adi Levin's Blog for programmers

June 16, 2009

4 things worth doing at work

Filed under: programming — Adi Levin @ 3:41 pm
Tags: , , ,

A programmer should invest his working hours, doing these four things:

1. Develop software

This includes programming, debugging, designing, reviewing code, etc… – all the activities for which you get paid at the end of the month.

2. Learn

You have to learn new technologies, as well as study carefully the old technologies that you are currently using without a full understanding. In software engineering, the distance between an idea and its usage in the product, is very small. Learning quickly pays off.

3. Teach

Anything you’ve learned, before you got this job, or during this job, could be of interest and of use to your colleagues. Some people think it is strategically better to keep information and knowledge to themselves – making them irreplaceable. This is a bad policy, because of three reasons: (a) This is disrespectful, and people want to get respect. Also, it shows that you don’t trust other people – why should they trust you then? (b) It is bad for the organization. A company’s best interest is to increase the knowledge of all programmers – not just one. (c) Everyone is replaceable.

4. Build relationships with colleagues

If you want to be able to strengthen your influence on the product and on the methods that other people use at work, or on your work-place in general, you need to have a good relationship with people around you. Be a friend. Listen, and understand others, before you expect them to listen to you. Find opportunities to accept the ideas of colleagues or subordinates – let them know you trust them.

Some programmers do not pay enough to the three last items in this list. Do you?

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