Diligence: The beginning of brilliance

Vasiliki Kotzampasidou Soft Skills
2 min read
person digging in a tunnel

After listening to our colleague’s overview on soft skills for developers, I realized that Victor had just emphasized a very important skill needed for IT that I had in the bottom of my list. When you usually ask developers what skills a developer should polish, the most common answers are teamwork, communication, time management. Turns out diligence is one of the most crucial ones as well.

But why?

While all the other skills associate with teamwork mainly, diligence requires to work a lot on yourself mentally.

Diligence means having a careful and persistent work of effort.

How can you practice diligence?

The first step you need is to put your focus on one activity or project at a time. Although it sounds easy, it is not at all. The reason being is that often, people prioritize the wrong tasks. If you do not correctly manage your tasks nor focus on the first priority, you will get lost in a series of unorganized responsibilities. Do not lose your devotion on your work; simply try to organize it better. Remember: you have taken the responsibility to complete it.

The second step is to practice self-control. It is critical to manage your emotions and feelings. Do not allow anything to bring you down or distract you, because this is when anxiety gets you and you feel like you do not know anything about your project. Keep in your mind your initial purpose and continue the good effort. If you shift your mindset this way, it will be easier for you to focus on your tasks and get back to your senses at the same time.

The third and last step is the willingness to learn. Programming is tough. It does not matter how experienced you are. There are plenty of new skills and abilities you will have to learn to come up with a solution to a problem. Although hard work is needed, there is a catch that junior developers usually fall into. The risk of “too much” hard work is burn out. It can dry out your energy too fast, so by feeling exhausted, you cannot keep up with your project and your tasks. Conversely, if you do not push yourself to work hard at all, you will see that you will fall into a trap of unfinished tasks and decrease your will to becoming more productive in the long run.

In conclusion, having a careful yet consistent effort is better than wasting all your energy on one task or project. Continuous effort is the key to unlocking your potential. What you hope to do with ease, you must first learn to do with diligence. So yes, diligence is the beginning of brilliance.

What are the other soft skills needed in a developer? Check out the Soft Skills series here.