Have You Reached The End Of Your Value?


A question on Quora this morning asked what separated a "weak" software developer from a "strong" one. The relevance of the question and answer goes way beyond software developers. It speaks to why you may not be seen, as a value developer.

The answer came from a 30 year veteran and subject matter expert. The response was smart, simply put, well thought out and organized. The differentiator was characterized as the difference between those needing help most of the time, to get their program running and those who didn't need constant help.

The other distinguisher had to so with those who couldn't recognize critical patterns and those who were adept at pattern recognition. The answerer saw those who knew what they were doing were those who understood where their programs ran astray and how to break down a complex problem and build a solution back up into a practical sustainable application.


These conclusions map and match my own work experience with engineers over the years. My area of focus is leveraging behavioral science, emotional intelligence and organizational acumen to improve individual and team, cross-winning, performance.

Whether one is a software developer or architect, the same is true in management across any and all industries. Managers rely on clarity. Leaders create it. Managers need direction to operate. Leaders operate in ambiguity. This fundamental principle is industry agnostic.

Even across the strongest players I am asked to work with (from private companies to public and global enterprises) many players are held back in their careers by a confluence of career stalling factors such as overdeveloped egos meeting underdeveloped problem solving skills, meeting limited capacity for systems thinking and practical, results oriented solution application.


Most talent understand what’s needed and why. That's easy part; their told that by their bosses. What falling star talent lacks is the think-thru and organizational ability to breakdown a complex problem and build a solution back up into a scaleable solution.

The single most limiting factor holding a “weak” player back from being a “strong” player and a marginal contributor back from being a valuable and needed resource is the lack of valuing the time needed for critical think-thru.

Where do you stand between a weak and a stronger player? How are you really seen?

Do you take the dedicated time to plan, see and organize what's needed to come together to fit together or do you rely on your fast thinking and smooth talking skills to get you by?

Are you creating valuable clarity or are you too busy doing, doing, doing what you assume is important rather than seeing and understanding what's most relevantly needed to add the most value?