Tips for a proper start as an IT junior

12 April 2018 news

The first steps in the IT field may seem overwhelming and puzzling. Kevin Pelgrims, one of our speakers at DevTalks for Juniors, tells you what to take into consideration if you want to have a proper start as an IT Junior:

If you are ambitious and want to make the most out of your career as a developer, there are a few things you can do in the beginning of your career to become a better developer.

The most impactful thing to do is to find a good mentor. If you have someone who can guide you through the first couple of years, you have a head start on everyone else. If you can’t find anyone that has time to help you out, then try doing all the things a good mentor would tell you to do:

Keep learnshutterstock_232230226ing
Read books, blog posts, and code in Open Source repositories. Listen to podcasts, and watch conference videos. They are not equally interesting, but if you pay attention, you can always learn something new. Also, work on pet projects that contain challenges you don’t face at work. Besides educational, this is also a lot of fun.

Contribute to Open Source

You don’t need to publish your own Open Source projects from the start. Instead, try to contribute to projects that you use yourself; even if it is just a fix in the documentation. The point is that you dare to expose yourself and get some karma points.

Start a blog
Having a blog does not mean you need to write a new article every week. Just post new articles when you feel like you have something to say. You should also consider blog posts as a favour to your future self. If you document the steps you take when you face certain challenges, you have a reference to handle similar problems in the future.

Go to events

Learn from others and talk to people. A big part of making advances in your career is having a network of interesting people. Maybe sign up to talk about a subject yourself, even if you don’t feel ready. Attendees at meet-ups are normal people, and they will understand if your talk doesn’t go very well. The only cure is practice!