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How much did you really know before landing your first DEV job?

Tulsi Prasad
19, Sophomore. Crafting meaningful user experiences. Works with React, Redux and JS. Learning through building useful tools and apps for people. Helping people on the internet, to build a better web.
・1 min read

This is a THREAD dedicated to especially beginners in DEV and who are struggling quite often with tragic imposters and the trap of knowing everything all at once.

I would like you to share mainly the experience of your very first role in your career, this maybe a job or an internship (or maybe even freelance).

Here's a few topics, you can reflect on:

  • How did you get to know about the opportunity?
  • How much did you really know before landing the opportunity?
  • Where did you gained the necessary skills in order to get there?
  • What projects did you build in order to impress your recruiters?
  • How much time did you spent on a regular basis for learning?
  • Did you have any burnouts? How did you deal with them?
  • How often would you take breaks in between coding and what would you do in that time?
  • How did you feel at the end of all these?

Thank you for being a part of this! 💙

Discussion (3)

moopet profile image
Ben Sinclair

I don't know if this is going to be a helpful comment, since I'm answering pretty much the opposite of how I guess you expect.

Compared to most juniors, I knew a lot. A lot about programming a lot of different systems and languages.

I worked with computers, and I've been programming as a hobby since I got my first zx81. But I didn't go for a programming job for something like 20 years - because I didn't think I knew enough.

When I did go for a software job it was because I'd been made redundant from a hardware support job and had nothing to lose. I thought it would be too hard, and that I'd get fired for not being any good.

It wasn't, and I didn't.

Turns out, a lot of companies - all the good ones - are very understanding when it comes to juniors. You get help along the way, and everything you can't quite do without someone's help fades into insignificance as soon as you manage your first ticket on your own.

When I've ended up on the other side, interviewing candidates, coaching newbies - and telling people to go home when it's 1730 and they're worried about not having done enough - it feels good to try to help. What you have to know is that when you're applying, people want the best candidate, sure, but they want to help you out as well. They want the junior who's keen to learn, who can soak up ideas like a fresh sponge and come out with a few of their own.

There's a saying, which goes something like, "if you can look back on what you wrote six months ago without feeling embarrassed, you're not learning enough". And now I look back and think how little I knew when I started.

It's all good, though.

heytulsiprasad profile image
Tulsi Prasad Author • Edited

"If you can look back on what you wrote six months ago without feeling embarrassed, you're not learning enough

Thanks Ben. This almost made my day. 🙌

I've also been up to myself a lot of time, I hadn't even thought of working for some company until couple months ago, when I wanted to move out of my parents home. I always loved making stuff for myself and friends and writing to explain the hardships I faced in the way. However, starting out in search for jobs, I found the importance of algorithms and also some frameworks which I completely neglected, as a newbie. That's when I used to get a surge of imposter.

But however, I am glad for the presence of such inclusive online communities like Twitter and DEV, which have been like bread and butter for me and everytime I fall, I'd be inspired to get back up listening to some amazing people as you. Thanks a lot. 💙

heytulsiprasad profile image
Tulsi Prasad Author

I just watched some recorded videos from yesterday's Juneteenth Conf and can't believe the keynote talk by Danny was so inspiring and motivational which might answer a lot of your questions as well as a beginner. Here's the video from Danny's talk:

Forem Open with the Forem app