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How good coding can help you grow your business

In June 2016, Fast Company published an article about ‘Why Coding Is Still The Most Important Job Skill Of The Future’. The research firm Burning Glass found that jobs requiring coding skills pay, on average, $22,000 more, and that half of all jobs with salaries over $58,000 require some coding skills. And for entrepreneurs and business owners, the benefits are even greater.

But why should a non-technical founder of a small business want to learn to code? Surely it would be more effective to pay developers, and focus on working with the key skills and strengths you already have? Well actually there are some pretty compelling reasons why you should invest some time in developing your coding skills:

Becoming More Efficient

Almost all jobs today require a fair bit of time working with a computer. You likely have to do a range of similar tasks each day, including working with email, creating and managing documents, and searching the web. Almost all of these tasks can be made more efficient with a strong knowledge of how the software and operating system you are using works. A little knowledge of coding allows you to automate away much of the repetitive chores, freeing you up to do what you do best.

Communicating With Technical People

Regardless of your current fluency with technology, it is likely that fairly regularly you need to communicate with technical people about things that you don’t entirely understand. Whether it is trying to get some content added to the company website, getting some software installed on your computer or removing the tweet you accidentally posted on the company account, greater technical knowledge can make every aspect of those conversations much more straightforward.

Understanding How Software Works

Our current primary computing device, the smartphone, has only been around in its current form for 10 years. Who knows what devices we will be using 5, 10, or 20 years from now? Understanding the fundamentals of how computers work will allow you to make the most of new devices and software before your colleagues, giving you an edge and enabling you to do your job better.

Building A Web Presence

80% of employers google job applicants before inviting them for interview. Take a moment to search your own name and see what comes up. Is it what you would want a potential employer to see? Creating a blog, portfolio site, or a simple site for a project you’ve undertaken or ebook you have written enables you to control what your future boss sees, and helps you standout as an applicant.

Taking On Extra Responsibilities Within Your Current Role

Learning to code gives you the ability to, for example, build an app that makes something that you and your colleagues to regularly easier or more effective. You could create a webpage that helps people to arrange car sharing, or if you are a lawyer you could build an app to allow clients to instantly view the status of their case, and be automatically alerted to any updates. Or you could simply take responsibility for your area of the company website, making sure it is up to date and perhaps introducing tools and features that become popular with your customers or clients. 

Imagine your boss’ reaction if you came in on Monday morning with the solution to your departments problems in the form of a slick website or mobile app!

Acquiring specialist skills that could boost salaries and advance careers used to require at least a degree, if not years of study as part of a PhD or MBA. But today the proliferation of online courses and coding bootcamps has made the acquisition of coding skills highly feasible for anyone with a computer and internet connection.

What is stopping you from boosting your career by acquiring some coding skills today?