3 Ways to Thrive in a Technology-Driven Company
If you’ve just been hired at a tech company for a seemingly non-technical position, you may find yourself thrust into the unknown world of software alongside veterans who have been around code for years.
Front ends, back ends, the cloud, frameworks, SaaS, UX, API, HTTPS… countless terms and acronyms you never quite understood get tossed around every day in the tech world and can leave you in a state of dazed confusion.
However, there is good news: you’re not alone.
Even software gurus can’t hope to completely understand every technology buried in the darkest depths of their laptop, half of which are a mix of voodoo and black magic that can only be stared at in awe from a distance. The world of computer science is simply too vast for any of us to fully digest in between power naps and House of Cards binges.
Fear not. When it comes to practical software knowledge that you might run into at your new tech job, it is more than possible to expand your expertise in order to earn office respect and collaborate better with your techie coworkers.
Below are a few easy tips to get you started on a path that will gradually turn you into a seasoned warrior on the battlefront of technical diction.
● Google Is Your Friend
Next time you find yourself in a tech-heavy conversation, instead of letting your mind wander to the stir fry you left in the office fridge last week, try to pick up on a few of the terms the software experts bring up. Smile, nod in agreement, then return to your desk to Google the terms.
Read the first line of its Wikipedia article. Watch a two minute video. You don’t have to become an expert; it’s more about gaining a little context for these terms. Over time, this context will grow into a web of interconnected knowledge about your company’s technology stack.
● Get Your Foot In The Door
When you start “talking tech” with a coworker and you run into an unfamiliar concept, it’s easy for that conversation to take a wrong turn down the rabbit-hole of confusion. This might lead you to avoid discussing any technical details at all costs.
Instead, stay strong. What starts out as gibberish will gradually become your native tongue as long as you keep diving into these types of conversations head first.
Ask questions, keep the dialogue going and, most importantly, avoid embarrassing yourself. Become a sponge of techie know-how.
● Fake It You Make It
Regardless of how out of the loop you may feel, take pride in the new concepts you’ve learned and accept that you don’t know everything. Share your knowledge with other non-techies with an air of confidence that implies you learned all of this in grade school.
Don’t bow out of technical tasks because you think you don’t have the technical expertise; these tasks are the best way to strengthen it. In the words of my alma mater, “Learn By Doing.”
There you have it, a few simple strategies that will have you speaking code in no time. The next steps can include keeping up with tech blogs, attending seminars and, dare I say, learning to write some code?
Regardless, start here and you’ll become the bridge between technical mumbo jumbo and the rest of the business world.