Inspiring Global Technology Teams with Convergence KE

An engineer’s competency is typically distinguished by a combination of technical acumen and effective communication. However, it takes more than simply being proficient in order to reach the pinnacle of one’s field. In order to be considered a world-class engineer, a person must possess an array of skills and qualities, including the ability to think innovatively, work effectively with others, and solve complex problems. When assembling a top-tier engineering team, it is important to consider the overall balance of skills, abilities, and perspectives. It is also essential to ensure that the team is comprised of individuals from a variety of backgrounds, genders, and cultures, as this can create a more dynamic, productive, and inclusive environment for all. Ultimately, the most important trait for engineering leaders to look for when hiring engineers is the potential for growth and the capacity for success in the future.

Works is an event for engineers and tech leaders in the community to come together and share their collective experiences, knowledge, and wisdom. It serves as an opportunity to discuss successes, failures, and the lessons learned throughout their respective journeys. This was the driving force behind the inaugural Works event.

More than a hundred members of the technology community attended the iHUB, one of the area’s premier innovation hubs and hackerspaces, to benefit from the expertise of a diverse panel of experts. Attendees had the opportunity to listen to and engage with the panellists in an interactive setting.

At The Convergence KE, an event managed by the small yet remarkable team at Works, we were fortunate enough to be joined by some of the most prominent figures in the industry. We would like to share with you some of the inspiring and insightful quotes from the panel. Let us begin!

Differences between competent and exceptional engineers

The panel of experts suggested that great engineers demonstrate a commitment to excellence in their work, demonstrating an unwavering dedication to learning, accuracy, and tenacity. Additionally, they strive to develop creative and effective solutions while not allowing their own personal ambitions to become a priority. Ultimately, they are driven by the desire to achieve either recognition or a meaningful impact.

About the ridiculous claim of being a “world-class engineer”;

Despite the consensus among some of the panellists that a top engineer is invaluable due to their capacity to tackle problems in a multitude of industries, regardless of their geographical location or the environment and expectations they confront, there were those who contested the notion that engineers could be referred to as “world-class”. The opposing viewpoint argued that technology undergoes continual transformation and renewal, with new versions, systems, and technologies being introduced on a daily basis. This makes it difficult, if not impossible, for engineers to ever reach a definitive peak in terms of their expertise and experience in the sector.

Exactly how do you feel about that?

Regarding the characteristics that tech team managers seek for in prospective engineers;

Your technical abilities, demonstrated by projects you have accomplished, as well as your familiarity with certain languages, stacks, and platforms are highly valued.

The panellists highlighted the importance of a variety of soft skills, such as the capability to effectively communicate across distributed teams and different time zones in a timely and articulate manner to ensure comprehension. Additionally, they emphasised the need for resilience in the face of failure, as well as the capacity for active listening within the team and with customers and clients. Lastly, the panellists stressed the value of self-reliance, being able to take initiative and step in when the team is unavailable.

One of the primary motivations for the core values of the Works to be focused on the four “soft skills” (or “EPIC values”) of excellence, passion, integrity, and collaboration is because we believe that these are essential qualities that help us to drive success and foster a positive working environment.

Is this anything you didn’t expect to hear?

Related Article: 3 Qualities Software Developers Look for When Looking for Work

When Working in a Dispersed Group;

The panellists expressed their consensus that this is the trajectory that humanity is moving towards, particularly due to the current dearth of software engineering talent worldwide. As a remote-first organisation, the majority of our engineering teams are comprised of engineers located in Asia and the offices of our partner organisations. We strongly believe that intelligence is distributed equally, but that access to opportunity is not.

It was also stressed how important it is for remote/distributed teams to include members with a wide range of backgrounds and experiences.

In closing, I’d like to summarise a few points of advise this energised panel offered to engineers in the middle of their careers.

  1. Do not allow your position as a junior or senior engineer be your primary motivation; instead, focus on being a GREAT engineer.
  2. When there is no opportunity for mistakes, there is no opportunity for progress. This is because the most challenging setbacks have been instrumental in teaching some of the most significant lessons, both in the global arena and in the realm of technology.
  3. Given the ever-increasing presence of technology in business, it is essential to develop and refine both your technical and interpersonal skills. By doing so, employers will be able to recognise your qualifications and be more likely to seek you out for potential job opportunities.
  4. In the past, the primary pathway for gaining experience in the industry was through on-the-job training. However, in the current environment, formal education, such as online courses and digital resources, as well as mentorship programs, have become increasingly popular methods for acquiring knowledge and expertise.
  5. It is important to keep in mind that you are not simply completing a task for a specific project or platform, but instead playing an important role in achieving a larger goal. Having a strong understanding of the bigger picture will help you stay motivated, even when you encounter difficulties along the way.

The panellists shared their diverse experiences as children and young adults, and it was encouraging to hear that none of them have any misgivings about having pursued a career in technology. This is because working in this field provides them with new and stimulating challenges to solve on a daily basis, as well as a larger platform from which they can have a positive impact on the lives of millions of people worldwide through the solutions they have helped to develop.

In short, it was an amazing debate!

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