03 Jul Good Developer vs Good Inverse-Square Developer
As Director of Custom Development at Inverse-Square, I’ve had the pleasure of working on a myriad of successful application development projects. From a mobile app for a travel company, to a nationwide property acquisition system, they’ve all had different requirements but one very important thing in common; they’ve all been Inverse-Square projects.
When it comes to custom software development, skills are only one component, our company’s commitment to maintaining a strong culture is the true key to our success. Being a good Inverse-Square developer is as much about how our developers fit into our culture, as how well they perform.
During the design phase of a project, there is a lot of brainstorming and collaboration that needs to occur. At Inverse-Square, we cultivate a couple of qualities in our team that we believe are necessary for this process to be effective:
1. Details matter. The more details that can be nailed down initially, the easier it is to estimate timeframes and budgets, and to implement them.
2. “What we change today will improve tomorrow”. This is one of our creeds and why we come to work every day. Our goal is to help people through technology and software. Hopefully, this also equates to revenue, but that is not the driving force for an Inverse-Square developer. We’re here because we’ve learned how to make our lives easier through technology and we want to do the same for others.
Because it can be difficult to qualify a developer’s performance, we try to keep things simple and meaningful:
Bugs caused by us that make it to production are a cardinal sin. It should be the thing you dread the most.
There are several cultural qualities that we cultivate at Inverse-Square to help us avoid sinning.
1. Hire for autonomy. Consulting moves fast; there is little room to wait on something or someone for your next move. Our developers need to tackle as much as they can on their own, but they also can’t be afraid to raise their hand when they need help. There is definitely a fine line here. Thankfully, that fine line becomes more apparent the longer that a developer works on our team.
2. Collaboration is key. This is a common theme in our office. Many corporate environments are built on the concept that hoarded knowledge is job security; here, it’s the opposite. Though we hire for autonomy, we live or die based on how well we can collectively solve a problem. This means frequent and clear communication between developers. That’s why we consider communication to be such a highly valued quality.
3. Take pride in your craftsmanship. This ranges from how passionate a developer is about making a block of code run just that bit faster, to a developer’s professional hygiene. Generally, an individual doesn’t merely fall into a career as a developer, they do it because they enjoy it. Inverse-Square does an excellent job of cultivating each employee’s technical passion. Inevitably, this passion manifests itself as higher quality code that is delivered to our clients.
Support and Triage
After an application is “shipped”, there is inevitably cleanup and sometimes that cleanup occurs under stressful situations. To deal with the demands, an Inverse-Square developer displays the following characteristics:
- Respect for our client. Sometimes visions don’t align 100%, even when both parties feel like everything was documented perfectly. Because of this, developers cannot lose focus on why we’re doing this in the first place; we make people’s lives easier by problem solving with software. Inverse-Square developers are called to deal with all situations respectfully. We sum this up with the value, “serve, especially when it’s hard.”
- Willing to help. One of our other values is “respect for our community”. This applies both internally and externally. Sometimes a developer can run out of gas right as the project support requests start coming in. This is when an Inverse-Square developer’s willingness to chip in is extremely valuable! By respecting each other, our developers work as a team to always get the job done cleanly and professionally.
At Inverse-Square, respect, integrity, pride, improvement, and service are the values that we hold dear, they’re the values that shine through in our clean code and keep us on top of our game, continually innovating to ensure cutting-edge technology for our clients.