The technical knowledge and skills you want to acquire through a study are not always enough for a programmer. No less significant are the personal qualities and capabilities that a future IT specialist must possess. As a rule, in most job offers posted by employers, those qualities and capabilities are listed below other requirements. No matter whether you want a career in IT or see programming as a hobby, you should also consider these skills and qualities listed below:

  • well-developed logic and analytical thinking
  • communication skills
  • good capacities for assimilation and adaptability
  • team player
  • creativity and imagination
  • well-developed responsibility spirit
  • friendly person
  • ability to solve conflicts diplomatically
  • desire for self-improvement and fast-learning

I will describe each of them separately, explaining why some of them are so important for building a software developer career. So let's start with the first one.

Well-developed logic and analytical thinking

Many argue the impossibility of becoming programmers due to the lack of analytical thinking and logic inappropriate to technical fields. This is an illusory and totally wrong opinion. I believe that everyone possesses logic insofar as there is no illogical person to throw themselves into a well. It's about logic development, not just with a focus on technical sciences. In addition, I believe that any rational person can analyze and think.

Programming indeed involves solving certain problems, and of course, those people who have been good at math, physics, and other exact sciences, with technical inclination, will also be good at computer science, but this is due more to the ability to correctly understand the problem and propose concrete solutions for its resolution.

The development of logic and analytical thinking does not result only from the analysis and solving of problems in the fields of mathematics, physics, and computer science, but also from the fields of fiction, drama, and even poetry. I will bring a clear example: I had a colleague named Alex who was a good historian, but thanks to his phenomenal memory and analytical thinking, he became a good programmer. Life determined him to take a different direction and his abilities helped him quickly master a new field.

Anyone can develop logic and analytical thinking by solving puzzles, cognitive games, IQ tests, reading books, going to the theater, and even learning Shakespeare. Remember Danny DeVito in the movie "Renaissance Man", and how he contributed to his military students' intelligence development. He proposed them to learn Shakespeare.

Communication skills

It sounds simple, doesn't it? However effective communication involves more than just jokes, humor, and a friendly disposition. Being communicative does not mean maintaining effective communication. Particularly for software development, technical knowledge, or rather some problems that involve technical language must be interpreted in such a way that they are perceived not only by other programmers but also by non-technical people, like the client for instance, for whom the software application is being developed.

Often programmers must have a dialogue with the client, the project manager, other team members, because the software industry relies more on teamwork, efficient communication is a path to success, and often means a lot. Here, knowledge of foreign languages is also welcome, and is also highly appreciated and even requested by many IT companies.

When I was employed in a large IT corporation with over 3000 employees as a programmer, there was a colleague named Max who was hired around the same time as me, and he was very, very shy. He didn't communicate with anyone, not even with the team members he was working with. This led him to be quite isolated from the world, and he felt it too. As a result, he didn't stay long in the company and left. In a large organization, the lack of communication skills is a pretty serious problem, but any teamwork primarily involves communication.

So learn foreign languages, be polite and communicative, always weigh things before asking or answering any question, and everything will work out well.

Good capacities for assimilation and adaptability

"It's not just the strongest who survive, but those who can adapt fast to the changes", is a law of nature, valid in contemporary society and also in the IT industry. Considering that the IT world is constantly changing, new programming languages, frameworks, tools, and methodologies appear every day.

Programmers should be open to learning and adapt to changes easily and quickly. I'm not just talking about the requirements of a specific project that a programmer is working on, which always involves delivery terms, new requirements, sometimes even major changes in logic and technologies, but they also have to deal with team members, who can also leave or join. You must get used to this. The easier you adapt to upcoming requirements, different technologies, and new people, the better you fit.

Team player

As mentioned above, software development is not an individual effort but involves teamwork. Developers, designers, testers, project managers, and many other people are involved in the software development life cycle. Software developers should be able to work well with others, respect other people's opinions, and be willing to compromise when necessary.

Many companies cultivate team spirit by promoting different types of sports outside the working hours, such as footsal, volleyball, football, specifically to strengthen the team spirit of their employees.

Creativity and imagination

Programming is not just about coding, logic, and analysis, but also about creativity and imagination. Programmers are creative by nature, and this applies not only to designers and front-end developers but to all developers regardless of their technologies and directions. A software developer is also a creator of intelligent solutions, and there are many people who create even masterpieces in this field.

Creative and imaginative thinking are equally important factors in a successful career. Develop your imagination by reading books, and practicing cognitive games, but first and foremost by learning programming languages and applying knowledge in practice developing games, and many other useful applications.

Well-developed responsibility spirit

A successful software developer is able to take responsibility for his or her actions. A deep sense of responsibility means being responsible for the code you write, for the errors you make, and for the solutions you can propose later.

It's not just about admitting your fault for things that go wrong, it's also about enjoying and celebrating with others when things go well. It's about respecting your decisions and learning from your mistakes. It's about understanding that your code has an impact on the real world. And that you, as a developer, could change a lot of things both for better and worse.

Cultivating a sense of responsibility may take time, but it is a worthwhile investment in your own personality. It fosters trust within a team, encourages proactive problem solving and fosters professional growth. This quality is highly valued by IT companies' superiors.

Friendly person

A friendly nature may seem unrelated to the programming profession, but it plays a significant role in a successful career. As I have mentioned several times before, the process of developing software applications often involves teamwork. So being a friendly person can facilitate better communication, build strong and amicable relationships with team members, and contribute to creating a pleasant working atmosphere.

A friendly person easily finds a common language with other colleagues, who are always willing to offer help or discuss ideas. Friendly persons are open to feedback and willing to provide it in a positive way for others. They understand that everyone in the team has skills, experience, and values that need to be valued and respected by others.

In a world where remote work is gaining more popularity and becoming widespread, friendship can help overcome the so-called "digital distance". It is not just professional interests that bring people together, but also a friendly message or virtual conversation.

I remember a case from my professional experience when I was just starting out as a junior and worked with a senior for several months on a desktop project for a client from the UK, I was eager to learn new technologies, especially on the web. And when our project was completed we were both recommended for a new Web project. Mark, my senior colleague, suddenly refused, contenting himself to sit better on the bench (waiting line). I asked him puzzled why he had declined the project because it was on innovative web technologies, an interesting project. He replied "- I refuse not because of the project, but because of the team leader. Mr. John is a tough guy and has a complicated character. You can come into conflict with him, he can shout, he gets angry..." - he was already informed about the team leader and knew that he was not a friendly person, and that meant a lot.

Now I understand that he was right. It matters not only what you work on and the money you earn. It matters also with whom you work within the team, how you get along with others, and how they get along with you.

Ability to solve conflicts diplomatically

Conflicts are inevitable in any team, and software development teams are no exception. Disagreements can arise over technical decisions, project priorities, or even coding styles. The key is not to avoid conflicts but to manage them with diplomacy and tact.

These challenging situations can be handled easily by someone with diplomatic conflict resolution skills. People who listen to all opinions and mediate discussions effectively can help their teams reach a consensus. In conflict situations, they will remain balanced even if many look down upon them.

These skills are especially useful in teams practicing Agile development, where programmers interact and collaborate tightly integrated into the work process. A software developer who can handle conflict diplomatically can help maintain team harmony and keep the project on track.

Desire for self-improvement and fast-learning

In order to remain competitive in today's IT world, a software developer must possess a strong desire for self-improvement and rapid acquisition.

Self-improvement is not just about learning various programming languages or new tools and architectures. It is also about improving personal skills, especially those mentioned above, such as communication, teamwork, and diplomatic conflict resolution. So feedback from other people is always welcome, especially from team members, regarding the quality of your work and your own personality.

You will be given feedback regarding what you achieved and what needs to be improved. In several IT companies, the so-called "One-On-One" feedback is practiced, between the manager and other team players, or between the mentor and his disciple, where self-improvement is discussed particularly.

Fast learner - means learning and adapting quickly. It implies the ability to be open to new ideas and be willing to step out of your comfort zone to embrace change. A software developer who embraces change and is always willing to learn new things can be considered a good developer. He will always stay on his feet in the IT industry.


If you possess only some of the characteristics listed above, it would be beneficial for you to continue the development of the others, as the more positive qualities you possess, the better and objectively you will be viewed by the world, and especially by superiors and clients.


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