Programming Soft Skills: From Server to Web Developer

Katie Dunn By Katie Dunn ● June 28, 2021
Programming Soft Skills From Server to Web Developer featured
Today we’ll dive into the ser­vice indus­try, and all of the pro­gram­ming soft skills that would make a serv­er or restau­rant man­ag­er a great web developer.
A shift from the ser­vice to tech indus­try may seem like a huge jump at first glance. How­ev­er, there are actu­al­ly many par­al­lels between the two, espe­cial­ly when it comes to soft skills. Tech­ni­cal capa­bil­i­ties can be learned and devel­oped through instruc­tion, but soft skills are often just as impor­tant when mak­ing a career change and typ­i­cal­ly hard­er to teach. If you’re in the leisure or hos­pi­tal­i­ty sec­tor and con­sid­er­ing a career as a web devel­op­er, you like­ly already pos­sess many of the impor­tant pro­gram­ming soft skills that will make you suc­cess­ful in tech. Let’s walk through a few of them.

1. Strong Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Skills

Clear com­mu­ni­ca­tion is an essen­tial skill in almost every indus­try, but it is par­tic­u­lar­ly impor­tant when work­ing in a restau­rant. From con­vey­ing mes­sages between the cus­tomers and man­age­ment, to keep­ing the front and back of the house on the same page, good com­mu­ni­ca­tion can pre­vent mis­un­der­stand­ings that would cost a restau­rant valu­able time and mon­ey. Strong com­mu­ni­ca­tion skills are also cen­tral to pro­vid­ing cus­tomer service.
Effi­cient com­mu­ni­ca­tion is also impor­tant for web devel­op­ers. Projects often require col­lab­o­ra­tion and team­work. Know­ing how to com­mu­ni­cate one’s ideas in a con­cise man­ner will save time and ener­gy on all sides of the oper­a­tion. Just like you would com­mu­ni­cate with a cus­tomer to address their con­cerns in a restau­rant, the process is quite sim­i­lar in web devel­op­ment. At some point you may deal with a client who is not sat­is­fied with how their soft­ware is per­form­ing. Com­mu­ni­ca­tion skills will be nec­es­sary to under­stand the prob­lem and pro­vide a solution.

2. The Abil­i­ty to Adapt

Adapt­abil­i­ty can be a dif­fi­cult skill to mas­ter in the work­place, but if you’re in the ser­vice indus­try you’ve prob­a­bly got this one down. No day is ever the same at a restau­rant. You’re con­stant­ly deal­ing with new cus­tomers, menu changes, over­book­ings, and may even be work­ing with dif­fer­ent peo­ple each shift. In order to be suc­cess­ful in such a busy envi­ron­ment, you must know how to adapt. Some­thing that may seem as sim­ple as rear­rang­ing tables to adjust for a customer’s seat­ing pref­er­ences, or cov­er­ing for a co-work­er who calls in sick at the last minute requires a great deal of flexibility.
Adapt­abil­i­ty is one of the most impor­tant pro­gram­ming soft skills. As a web devel­op­er, projects are con­stant­ly chang­ing and each day is dif­fer­ent. Even work­ing with­in one project, it’s impor­tant to be com­fort­able adapt­ing if a prob­lem aris­es and adjust­ing strate­gies when nec­es­sary. Cod­ing requires a lot of exper­i­men­ta­tion, which means ideas aren’t always exe­cut­ed as planned. Some­times you may have to scrap a project com­plete­ly and restart from the begin­ning. Under­stand­ing that it’s okay for ideas to change and being flex­i­ble through­out the process will help you be suc­cess­ful as a web developer.

3. Cre­ative Prob­lem Solving

Work­ing in a restau­rant can be chaot­ic and stress­ful at times. Mis­takes are bound to hap­pen. How you man­age the con­flict though, is the real tes­ta­ment to your prob­lem-solv­ing skills. When you work in a restau­rant, you know how to deal with spilled drinks, messed-up orders, short staff, and any oth­er cri­sis that could occur through­out the day. The abil­i­ty to think on your feet and find a cre­ative solu­tion, all while keep­ing the cus­tomer sat­is­fied, makes you a great prob­lem solver.
When you take a step back from the tech­ni­cal ter­mi­nol­o­gy and put it sim­ply, soft­ware devel­op­ment is all about find­ing cre­ative solu­tions to com­plex prob­lems. Your abil­i­ty to think crit­i­cal­ly and assess all pos­si­ble solu­tions to a prob­lem will be use­ful as you work through projects. You may be faced with strict dead­lines, or mul­ti­ple approach­es to reach­ing the same out­come. The bet­ter you are at being cre­ative and think­ing quick­ly, the more suc­cess­ful you will be.

4. A Sense of Urgency

Work­ing in the ser­vice indus­try pro­vides you with the valu­able skill of know­ing how to work under pres­sure. The fast-paced envi­ron­ment of a busy restau­rant push­es you to pri­or­i­tize tasks and be effi­cient as you learn to han­dle the busy times.
Momen­tum grad Dan­ny Befu­mo not­ed the sense of urgency he gained through work­ing in restau­rants for almost 20 years is a skill that trans­lat­ed well to his job as a tech­ni­cal sup­port engineer.
"Being able to look at a hec­tic day, and pri­or­i­tiz­ing what would be the most effi­cient way to spend it has been help­ful to adapt to projects."
So, take it from our grads – the ser­vice indus­try pro­vides you with the impor­tant pro­gram­ming soft skills you need to make the career switch.

So You Have the Pro­gram­ming Soft Skills… What Now?

Con­sid­er attend­ing a free online work­shop to learn more about cod­ing and whether a career in web devel­op­ment is right for you. Or if you’re past that step, it might be time to enroll in a pro­gram­ming course. Momen­tum offers both immer­sive and part-time pro­grams, with grad­u­ates report­ing an aver­age salary of $65,700. Learn more and apply today on our website!

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