Be The Developer Everyone Wants On Their Team

How can you become the developer that everyone wants on their team? Here are a couple ideas.

Be The Developer Everyone Wants On Their Team

I recently wrote an article about maxims to code by.  A recent linkedin article made me think of another one to add. It comes out of my experience teaching rock climbing.

Be The Climber That Everyone Wants To Climb With

Climbing always requires a partner. Often beginners have trouble finding partners. To help with that we would always emphasize "Be the climber everyone wants to climb with." What does that mean? It means a variety of things. It means carrying your fair share of the burden. Helping carry gear, flake ropes etc. It means being prepared by having the right gear and doing your homework. It means being organized and not making others wait on you. It means having a positive outlook and not grumbling.  It means showing up on time for carpools and maybe even bringing coffee or beer.

How To Be The Developer That Everyone Wants On Their Team

How do we take that idea and apply it to writing code? Here are 5 key areas.


It all starts with empathy. Have empathy for your fellow developers and users. Relate to them on a personal level.


No one likes a know it all. Don't be afraid to admit when you don't know something. Particularly with engineers. They can smell BS a mile away. Also, don't be afraid to ask for help if you need it. It's not weakness, it's self-awareness.


Ask lots of questions. People love to talk about themselves and their accomplishments. People also love to relive the old days. Ask them why things are the way they are. They'll probably be glad to tell you.

Always Learning

Always be open to learning new things. More than that, actively seek it out. Ask your coworkers to show you how things work. When you find something new, share it.


Don't be dogmatic. Don't try to force your coworkers to adapt to your style. First adapt to theirs. If you want to introduce change do it gradually and by example. Don't force things on people. Frame it as an experiment.

What's not on the list

There's a glaring absence on the list and that is technical skills. Yes, they are important, but they take time to learn. No one expects you to have those skills immediately. These other skills are quick and easy things that you can start practicing today.