What’s the first thing you do when you get to work in the morning? After saying hello, getting your coffee, checking your social media accounts, reading the newspaper and a variety of other answers that were given during the training, when you actually start working, what is the first thing you do? If you’re like almost everyone who attended the training on Thursday, 12th November 2015, your answer is “ Check Email”. The next question, then, is who sends you email? Does your project automatically send you email to complain it’s not finished on time? Does your code send email to ask you to optimise it? No. People do. This was the heart of the soft skills training, we need people more than we think we do. In almost all professions then your job is not to “write code” or the equivalent but to deal with people.
The training covered negotiation skills, people skills, specialisation, freelancing, setting your rate, working remotely, being a professional among other things. The training was enriched with group discussions and group activities.
When discussing specialisation, we honed in on why language specialisation isn't enough. Describing yourself as a Java or PHP developer isn't enough. A language doesn’t tell me anything about what kind of developer you are and what you can actually do. It only tells me one tool that you use to do your job. The participants then explored different ways of describing the work they do that presents it in the best light.
Participants then discussed how they set their rate and how the market influences what rate you can charge. They were discouraged from just choosing a rate randomly but calculating a rate based on what the market allows you to charge and the actual value of your work.
All in all, it was a great event which allowed the software developers to learn skills that are helpful for any professional.This training was part of the Craftsmanship Series. The next Craftsmanship Training is on Project Management, on December 10th. You can sign up for this event here