Entering a new company is always a challenge, a challenge that not only entails testing your technical knowledge but also how you interact with your co-workers.

Talking with friends and fellow programmers about their experiences when entering a new company, I gave myself the task of delving a little more into a specific topic “What qualities do you consider positive in a co-worker?” And considering his answers, I made my best effort to take the qualities that they mostly emphasized on as positive aspects of a co-worker. These capabilities are named “Soft Skills” according to Sophia Bernazzani.

What qualities do you look for in a co-worker?

It seems like an easy question to answer and I know that many will agree that some of the most important qualities of a developer are:

  • Creativity
  • Logic
  • Discipline
  • Knowledge

In my opinion, these qualities must be intrinsic in a developer, so the additional skills to these four are the answer to this question.

Proactivity

As developers, every day we face difficult situations or beyond our control, knowing how to anticipate these situations and having an action plan before them is the best feature of proactivity.

Pavneet Singh Saund says that “Proactive: create or control a situation instead of simply responding to it after it has happened“. Keeping this in mind, having a proactive teammate is so positive since that ensures that even if there is always a storm, there will be a person who brings calm and an efficient action plan against the problem or problems that arise and in turn will always try to be one step ahead of the problems.

Empathy

As Zachary Paruch says in his article, “Empathy is typically associated with being able to put yourself in the place of someone else”. Taking this into account, we can understand how a newbie feels, because we were all newbies once, that’s why we often feel the need to help them in the way we would have liked experienced teammates to help us.

This desire to help simply by having experienced similar situations is the exact definition of what Zachary Paruch means in his article, and it is why I propose putting it as a quality that a teammate should have for the benefit of the entire team, this, because supporting teammates help them grow as developers and makes workflow more fluid and less stressful among their members.

Curiosity

Albert Einstein said “I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious”. This curiosity led him to be a legend among physicists and was a quality with which he stood out in his field. Curiosity is a quality that we should awake as developers as it helps us to always try to ask ourselves why the code works, and not simply know that a certain method is useful for this or that, and also, if I write something, then another thing may result.

Another advantage that curiosity gives us is the fact that when we see that new technologies are born, a hunger grows in us for learning and knowing about them, as well as mastering the technologies we already knew before.

Curious teammates generally have good learning habits, and good habits are contagious.

Seeing someone with that hunger to learn, that hunger to master new technologies and that desire to grow as a programmer is not only motivating but also extremely useful because generally, this kind of teammates have something useful to comment and they are usually people who like to share what they learn, which is always beneficial in a team since all the members learn only by listening and taking as an example the curious teammate.


Teamwork

Teamwork makes the dream work” is what Liz Chatterton says in her article

Working as a team seems to be an easy task, but knowing how to deal with people with different ideologies, ages, and skills, becomes a challenge that we all have to go through. Mastering teamwork and knowing how to interact with people who are part of the team makes you a person with whom you can gain trust faster, and in a team, trust is one of the most important things since it not only makes working with you more comfortable, but it also helps your colleagues dare to comment or ask something about the job without fearing to be told something negative about it.

Remember that “A comfortable job is a dream work”.

Motivation

Doing what we like should always be our main objective. Motivation denotes passion for your work. When you like what you do, it is shown from the first moment. Having a motivated partner is something contagious, a good attitude and desire to do your job makes the whole team reach a unique tuning. If you are motivated, developing the other skills described in this article will be easy for you. Remember how James Clear defines motivation “Motivation is a powerful, yet tricky beast” but with enough effort, discipline, and above all motivation, you will improve yourself bit by bit. 


Conclusion

In conclusion, to be a better programmer, your Soft Skills will also be of the utmost importance. How you handle yourself in a team is going to say a lot of your value as a teammate. Knowledge and natural talent are not everything; how you treat your teammates and how you behave in different situations says a lot about you.

The points presented in this article are just some of the points that I could rescue from my experience and different conversations with fellow programmers. If you have any point that you want to extend or add, do not hesitate to leave it in the comments and I will see how to add it to the article.