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I am Jay Phelps. Ask me anything.


How do you grow from Front End Developer to Front End Engineer? What’s the key to be noticed in the industry?

I try not to make distinctions between "developer" and "engineer" as titles, but I'm thinking your question is rooted less about the titles themselves and more about the abilities/mindset.

If that's the case, I think the number one thing you can do is keep yourself challenged. If you feel your abilities are stagnate at your job, try to find another more challenging. Not everyone can switch jobs though, so in those cases try and find more challenging work that fits within your existing role. Having a side project is great too, time permitting. I've grown the most in my skills from the side projects I've done, most of which I never release publicly. It didn't matter though because it was super challenging and I learned so much.

Getting noticed is mostly being more social and having a consistent presence. Being active on Twitter, having an opinion and sharing your passions with others. Giving talks at meetups and conferences helps too, but it takes quite a lot of time, effort, and nerves. In the end, being noticed might get your foot in the door for better jobs but some are surprised to learn companies still make you go through the same interview process and still pass on you for technical reasons. e.g. the guy who made Homebrew interviewing at Google 😆

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