Most entrepreneurs are not coders. Entrepreneurs are visionaries and concentrate on things like strategy. Coders are logical and interested in detail. But are they really that different? This blog explores this relationship and argues that learning to code could be precisely the skill that entrepreneurs need.
Logical thinking is part of the DNA of coders. They need to understand how code is structured from beginning to end and the path between one chunk of code and another. In the same way, an entrepreneur also needs to understand the relationship between cause and effect. A potential client sees an ad, they call the indicated number or email for more info, the sales manager convinces them to make a purchase, the buyer is satisfied with the product, tells their friends, and round it goes.
Both entrepreneurs and developers know that there are many ways to fix a problem. A programmer can choose from a wide set of languages, approaches, frameworks, and libraries. Even if a developer does not know how to code in each of the programming languages, they will understand who to go to for advice about what language to use and what approach to take. The entrepreneur will take the same approach to problem-solving. As a result, both coders and entrepreneurs need to be flexible thinkers and to be able to think ‘outside the box to solve problems.
Motivation is a great driver for both programmers and entrepreneurs. The developer is motivated by a desire to learn, to take part in forums, talk to other coders, etc. Along the way, the developer makes hundreds of mistakes, learns to accept, predict and correct them. Mistakes are opportunities to learn and are not regarded as setbacks. An entrepreneur is motivated by a desire to build a business, learn, move forward, and along the way will also make lots of mistakes. Both are not put off by challenges or setbacks. Both regard this as part of the process and it can fuel their motivation to do better.
Let’s say you want to launch a service as a mobile app. To do this, you will need designers to design how it looks and feels as well as developers (iOS + Android) who will build its functionality. It may well take several months until you release the first version of the product. Large sums of money will probably have been spent on essentials like salaries and testing the product. You may need help with development costs or use services provided by companies like ICOholder, which can help leverage financial solutions.
Coders need entrepreneurs to help finance the development process and entrepreneurs need coders to put ideas into action. It’s a symbiotic relationship. To help oil the wheels, it’s very useful if programmers understand a bit about the world of finance and marketing and entrepreneurs understand something about how products like apps are built and tested, how long this process should take, and therefore how much this should all cost. As a result, entrepreneurs in this field should learn something about how to code. This knowledge will provide valuable insights into the production process.
There are a number of online courses and some very good classroom courses. The subject matter can be quite demanding for those new to it so most courses adopt an approach where learning is done in bite-sized chunks - one or two-day courses for example. This can be an extremely effective way to learn as it gives plenty of opportunities to practice and learns by trial and error (the best way!). There are, of course, full-time university courses for those who want to dedicate themselves to learning programming on a full-time basis.
So we’ve established that entrepreneurs - especially those working in the tech sector - would benefit from learning programming. It provides very useful insights into what’s possible, how much work is involved and how long the development process will take. Finally, as we’ve seen, the skills required to be an entrepreneur and to be a coder are complimentary so - if you are an entrepreneur - you may find the learning process easier than you think.
by Leon Howard | 11 Oct 21
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