Back in the day, websites were just pages full of information. But there was no interaction on the websites. There were no animations, effects, forms to fill, etc. Because of this, web pages were called static pages.
A dream hire for web development companies is someone who is willing to use their programming skills to solve customers’ problems.
When you have little or no previous job experience as a web developer or programmer, this is hard to prove. If you’re applying for a job as a web developer for the first time, it’s the passion and potential that stands out.
Remember, you need to have something to show the future recruiters—something that shows you are really interested in what you do. Also, keep in mind programming or web development is not everyone’s cup of tea. If you are not into creating web applications or solving customers’ problems with code, don’t act like you are!
- Define Your Goals
- Be a Problem Solver, Not a Programmer
- Build Your Own Projects
- Repeat Every Step and Example You See on Tutorials
- Apply for Job Early
- Figure the Best Working Hours and Workflow
1. Clarify Your Goals
Also, decide whether you want to become a software developer as a hobby, career, or as a business founder. Keep the goals in your mind!
2. Be a Problem Solver, Not a Programmer
No company or founder is looking for a programmer on their side. To make businesses thrive, the team has to consist of skilled people who are passionate about solving customers’ problems.
This means you should never write code that doesn’t solve a problem (or at least be part of solving one). Of course, as a beginner, this is not possible because you need to practice coding skills first with simple code examples. But once you have spent a week or two, you can already start applying your skills and solve problems with them.
When you apply for your first job or want to demonstrate your skills to a future co-founder, you need to have some experience. If you have never worked as a software developer, proving your passion and competitiveness is difficult. This is why you should start solving problems with code as early as possible. Build projects that solve some particular problem that has real-life meaning. Don’t be afraid to reinvent the wheel! The important part is to be able to solve problems with code.
One of the best ways to learn to code fast is by joining a scheduled Bootcamp taught by experts in the field.
Notice that you don’t necessarily have to spend a buck to become a proficient programmer. But if time is a question and you want to become job-ready in less than a year, then the best option is to join a paid program with a quality instructor and projects.
Moreover, one of the major pitfalls in self-studying (or even university courses) is the pace. If you’re studying yourself, you are most likely not going to push hard enough in the right direction.
And when it comes to university courses, you will surely learn lots of useful skills. But the university courses are theory-heavy and don’t really focus on the problem-solving part that well. Also, your instructors and assistants typically don’t have experience in the field, which is super important.
4. Build Your Own Projects (That Solve Problems)
Start building your own projects as early as possible. Moreover, make sure the projects solve some problems.
Remember, learning how to code takes time. After the first couple of weeks of hard training, you can do surprisingly little. I bet making a very basic snake game can still feel quite big of a challenge at this stage. That is to say, you don’t have to build something fancy. You don’t have to build a fully functional website with all the bells and whistles to impress recruiters. No one expects that kind of skill from someone who has just started.
- You get valuable experience in how to solve problems with code.
- You’ll be able to make great additions to your portfolio.
- You can solve problems that are actually meaningful to you.
5. Repeat Every Step and Example You See in Tutorials
Okay, this is probably the most important tip on the list. The only way to learn to code is by writing code. No book, course, mentor, or bootcamp can save you if you don’t write code.
If you happen to have some background in maths, physics, or chemistry, you might know it already. But if you don’t have a mathematical background, it’s important to realize that programming is different. You need to get hands-on experience in coding, otherwise, you won’t learn it.
6. Apply for a Job Early
Don’t hesitate to apply for a job even after a couple of months of training. If you have built some nice example projects and taken a course or two, there is a great chance you’ll be given a chance. Every recruiter knows a software developer must start their career from somewhere. When you have no working experience, it’s the potential and passion that attracts the recruiters.
7. Figure the Best Working Hours and Workflow
But don’t practice too sparsely either. Aim for that 3 – 7 hours of practice every day. And remember to take breaks. Drag your eyes off the screen for a moment if you’re stuck. It’s a surprisingly great way to refresh your thoughts and boost efficiency.
If you take part in a bootcamp or online course, they will set the right pace for you. But if you are self-studying, it’s your responsibility to work optimally.
- Do you want to know a ballpark estimate for how long it takes to learn to code? Make sure to check my article about how long it takes to learn coding from scratch.