I’ll be honest. The reason I got into web development in the first place was not to make a difference or contribute to the web, but because it was something I could kind of do and it paid fairly well compared to other job options I had. I had grand ideas, but deep down I knew I was thinking bollocks and saw myself trapped in an agency for the rest of my working life.
That was almost three years ago. So much has changed, I could really never imagine myself doing the things I do now, and that’s not to say that I do amazing things nowadays, but in contrast to where I started, I think I’ve come a long way.
In the three years, I’ve learnt front-end dev skills and WordPress to a scarily intimate level, not necessarily knowing all the tags and attributes (they change all the time) but an overview, birds eye view, scope of the languages and tools.
I feel I would really suit consulting right now. I do enjoy that actually, and having that knowledge of of the tools is something I have seen other consultants lack. Anyway, I digress.
The three years have given me the chance to learn the tools of the trade, make a name for myself (solely by Twitter), won an award (which further built my name) but most importantly, and I cannot stress how valuable this is, I’ve learnt how large sections of the industry work.
These days, combining those skills means I can confidently say to pretty much anyone that I have the knowledge and skill set to do some web work with them. Knowing that almost anyone who has something to share, sell or improve upon could be benefited by what you know is really empowering, and something that I still need to remember. Some say everyone is a client. By being yourself and minding your words, that can be very true.
I’m learning that as a freelancer to be, you really need to alter how you think and deal with just about anyone, as one day, you could work with them.
Back to the title…
Getting back to the title, but with all the in mind, the reason I do what I do now, is simple.
The combination of meeting new people, seeing new places, having new ideas, building new things and have an opinion people will trust and ultimately pay for, is ridiculously empowering, and I love it. I absolutely love the whole journey from first email to post-live comments from the client saying how the site has bought so much traffic, they’re hiring and doubling the premiss size.
Along the way, if I can help share the knowledge and teach others by tweeting, blogging, doing open source stuff and speaking, brilliant. More of that please.
Now, I want to make a difference and contribute.