What would I teach my 20-years-younger-self?
With 2023 around the corner and me celebrating 20 years of professional experience in the software world, I was thinking "what would I tell my 20-years-younger-self that would save him a lot of gray hair in the 20 years to come?".
Here is the list I came up with:
Always count till 10 before you act on your first instinct. If it won't change your mind, it will at least reassure you that you are making the right decision.
Don't try to sell to someone who didn't express a need. Convincing someone to buy is far more difficult than convincing someone who wants to buy, to buy from you!
Don't negotiate with yourself. It is OK to think a few steps ahead, but don't assume you know the other side's moves and definitely don't act before they do.
Your time is valuable (or in the cheesy version, "time is money"). Always think if the outcome worth the time you invest in it.
Hire experienced people that know better than you how to do the job you need done.
Don't fall into the same hole twice. You can't avoid failing, but try not to do the same mistake twice. Learn from your mistakes.
Always be around smart and experienced people. If you have a choice, be the stupidest person in the room, not the smartest one.
Being a great leader is something you can't say about yourself, others need to say that about you.
Software doesn't drive change, people do. If there is a problem that needs fixing, throwing a new software at it usually won't solve it. People need to facilitate and drive the change and the software is just a means to an end.
Marketing rules. You can build the most amazing product in the world but if no one knows about it, it's worth nothing.
Salesmanship is a craft. Never disrespect it! That's the reason some people sell more than others.