Last Friday night I was walking down the Walmart wine aisle (classy, right?) looking for the perfect $6 bottle of red wine to go with my sharp cheddar. This is my go to ‘celebration’ tradition… also my ‘had a hard day’ tradition and my ‘hadn’t done this in a while’ tradition. I don’t have a lot of variety with my traditions, but on this particular occasion I had a reason to celebrate. I had just finished my first week as a front-end developer.
You may be asking, ‘But weren’t you already a front-end developer?’ To which I answer, ‘No’. I was a junior front-end developer. Now, two weeks in, I am a lead front-end developer on my own team. And let me tell you, the first week was no walk in the park. Our inaugural project needed to have a completed prototype to the client by Friday (rapid prototyping here we come). It wasn’t easy, but the whole process went surprisingly smooth so that Friday morning we had something to show that we could be proud of. There were a lot of things that went right, but here are the top three that really added to our success:
A familiar framework: we use a flexible front-end framework called Motif that was developed in house by an amazingly smart frond-end guy. Go check it out.
We had all the copy up front: we of course revised some of it and applied our principles of content strategy, but having all the copy up front was a huge win.
Clear expectations and communication: we knew who was doing what and leveraged GitHubs versioning control to keep us from stepping on each other’s toes.
While I’m going to miss working with my old team, I’m really excited to be a lead. I’m doing the same stuff, but there’s a difference in expectations when you know you are ‘the guy’ and not ‘the guy who helps the guy.’ It means a lot that my coworkers/supervisors trust me which in turn makes me want to work all the harder to show that I’m worthy of the trust.
Anyway, I had to share my milestone. Because I’m ecstatic about it.
Photo courtesy of wsilver.