Early Career Mentoring Advice
"When looking for a job, focus on knowledge instead of money."
It is easy to make a mistake of going for a job that pays a little more (nothing life changing) and later on being less employable because of lacking important skills, with key technologies and experiences.
If you are beginning your career I hope this advice helps you too. I understand that today it can be even more challenging, since the competition for talent is at crazy levels - companies will offer you a number of benefits and interesting things to make you work there. But try to ignore all that for a moment (including the company name/brand) and really analyse your options by comparing the experience and knowledge you'll get when working there.
Example of important things to consider:
- Does the team use technologies that are solid and valuable in the market? Or will I be using proprietary technology not used elsewhere?
- What is the scale of the application this team works on? A small internal app or a large customer facing one?
- Will I be writing small scripts/pet projects? or will I be contributing to the core project as any other team member?
- Do they use open source technologies? Do they offer me the chance to contribute with open source projects?
- Is this team using any Agile framework (Scrum, Kanban etc) for delivering their work?
- Do they have a mentoring program in place when I start?
- Do they offer a budget for external training and certifications?
- Will I get to interact with customers? (if this is something you would like to do, consider a pro)
This list is just an example and I hope it helps everyone just starting their careers!
By focusing on knowledge first, it will increase your chances of staying in high demand which should bring you better financial results in the long run.