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Characteristics of a really great developer


by Wiktoria Stretskite

When companies want to find developers, they search primarily for people with specific technical skills. Professionals whom their hire should be able to work with particular programming languages, tools and frameworks. They should be able to handle back-end development, front-end development or both. Besides, it’s essential to have experience and a portfolio.

Below, we’ll list the five qualities that a developer should have to be characterized as “great”.

A positive mindset

Top developers never remain indifferent to the products they build. They strive to deliver the best possible apps, websites of software. They hone every feature and make sure the interface is incredibly user-friendly.

Employers sometimes need to push developers to make them work quicker and sacrifice their perfectionism for the sake of deadlines. To strike the optimal balance, the best professionals do their best to deliver on time. But they ask managers to give them enough autonomy and entrust exciting projects to them in exchange.

To help developers obtain a positive mindset, it’s essential to praise them for good performance. Plus, it’s vital to regularly collect feedback from them.

Communication skills

Excellent developers realize that their communication skills impact the ultimate quality of the product. That’s why they never hesitate to ask questions and they know whom to ask them. When they face a problem that can be solved only collaboratively, they inform all the relevant team members and eagerly share their ideas with them.

To enhance communication among their staff, managers can take these measures:

  • Provide free English lessons for those developers who aren’t proficient in this language. Even if the company is located not in an English-speaking country, IT specialists need to know this language very well to read useful articles, books and documents.
  • Arrange weekly or monthly meetings where developers would let others know about their most important findings.
  • Ask developers to put down all their meaningful news and discoveries in a shared document that is available to other employees. This text should be written in simple language.

Workers who realize that others value their opinion will be more enthusiastic to contribute to helpful communication.

Task and time management

For many occupations, the term “time management” is synonymous with meeting deadlines and never being late for work. However, great developers need to make a step further. They should be able to estimate in advance how much time it will take them to complete each task. Managers require this data to plan workflows for the whole team.

Moreover, time estimates are crucial for stakeholders. These people often lack a technical background. They fail to understand why tasks that seem so simple take so many resources. Developers should explain to stakeholders the essence of each task in common everyday language. When done properly, this measure can save the team from excessive stress.

Developers with outstanding time management skills don’t wait until managers set tasks and deadlines for them. Instead, they let managers know what they can do and how long it will take them. Plus, they can measure and control the speed of work of the whole team.

Willingness to learn

In the IT sphere, it’s not enough to get a diploma or a certificate just once. Technologies and solutions evolve incredibly fast. To keep up with the progress, developers should keep continuously learning. They are happy when each new project they complete teaches something new to them.

Large companies can afford to provide online or offline education to their staff members. Smaller businesses with limited budgets can at least encourage a culture of permanent learning among employees.

Technical expertise

When interviewing candidates, managers and company owners ask them about the projects and products they previously worked on. For instance, a business wants an IT professional to build a fitness mobile app. If this person has already delivered a few apps of this sort, they will have good odds of being hired. They know the standards and requirements for this type of task. They can teach colleagues how to handle such products.

Sometimes, one IT professional leaves the company and another one takes their place. The second one might struggle to understand the code and the documentation that their predecessor left to them. This situation can slow down the work of the whole department. Good developers make sure any colleague can take up where they left off.

As you can see from the points above, to become a good developer, you need to be not only a professional in your field, but also be able to work in a team, constantly develop and truly love what you do.