The Downsides of Being a Coder

FullThrottleTX

Woodpecker
I'm on career two as a coder. It's one of the best jobs to earn 6 figs without a college degree. I've advised a lot of guys to go this route. However, personally I'm on year 5 or 6 of doing this, and I can't see myself doing it for more than 3 more years. Here are some reasons:

1) I don't like the culture of most of tech. It's definitely the belly of the beast in terms of SJWs and weaker men. This is getting worse over time. Most of the men you'll meet in tech you probably won't want to hang out with. White girls in tech roles are often the worst you'll ever meet.

2) A lot of coders get hung up on pretty idiosyncratic ideas that I don't really care about. The less you care, the less you'll advance unfortunately. You have to be relatively autistic to really care.

3) It kills your social skills. I'm sitting in front of a computer all day not interacting with people. On the other hand, I'm more motivated to be social when I'm not working. But my day to day job, unlike my previous career in marketing, is not socially energizing. I have to do a complete transformation to talk to girls after work.

4) The pay is hard to beat, but the job has no transferrable value. This is a big issue for me. There are few professional fields you can do where you can make this kind of money without a graduate degree. On the other hand, software engineering careers are only good for software engineering. It's not like you can leverage your role into one more business focused. You could become a CTO eventually, but that's a big investment of time.

5) Coding may not match your personality. You need to be extremely detail oriented and analytical and able to focus on one frustrating problem for hours or days, mostly by yourself. If you're sensitive and require positive feedback constantly, being a software engineer isn't a good trade for you because everything you produce will be reviewed by mostly detached introverts who spare no comment. You have to have a thick skin. Luckily, this is one of my qualities. However, I enjoy working with people, and I'm quite extroverted. I know my personality is very diametrically different than my coworkers, so my personality is repressed on the regular.

6) When shit breaks, the company blames engineers. You have to be very careful to keep up the good will. Unfortunately, the company pushes deadlines that are often unrealistic.

7) Getting your first job is quite a hurdle. This doesn't apply to me, but something to think about. Because everyone is trying to become a software engineer right now, a lot of people drop out before they really get started. But once you're past that hurdle of your first job, there are way too many opportunities.

8) Engineers get laid off first. Engineers are an expensive line item so they're often the first to go.

9) Coding is hungry for your time. Software engineering is a hungry field for your personal time since you need to constantly stay on top of technologies and trends and they won't always carve out time for you to do this.

10) Engineers often have a primadonna mindset because they're in demand. Engineering departments are extremely transient. People aren't afraid of getting fired. This is good for job security, but bad for having coworkers you can count on. A lot of people coast in their roles, while others stick around for too long because they lack ambition.

I think that's it.
One question I ask myself, "when is it time to quit". I think it's when you don't want your bosses job.
This situation happened to me my last career and it factored into deciding to go into tech.

For me personally, I'm starting to get more interested in creative pursuits that can earn me probably less money, but are more fulfilling.
I also see the writing on the wall that corporate America is going to be culturally a difficult place for most men.
The longer you stay in it, the more risk adverse you become. This is a good thing to think about. It happens to everyone.
 

indokiwi

Newbie
I'm on career two as a coder. It's one of the best jobs to earn 6 figs without a college degree.

What qualifications did you have to get your first job?

Im thinking about getting a postgraduate certificate in IT from university its an intensive six month course and if my grsdes are good i can get into a masters program that takes 1.5 years to complete.

I can afford this training. Could you please give me some advice?
 

Feyoder

Woodpecker
2) A lot of coders get hung up on pretty idiosyncratic ideas that I don't really care about. The less you care, the less you'll advance unfortunately. You have to be relatively autistic to really care.

For something that's a hard science, there's a lot of BS out there and a lot of ideas that are not based around any ergonomic ideal. Probably because 9/10 men in the industry have some serious hormonal imbalance. This must affect their ability to think like men.

The bluepill / SJW percentage is like 90%+. It's exhausting.
 

redbeard

Hummingbird
Moderator
Solid post, but quick question on this line:
4) The pay is hard to beat, but the job has no transferrable value. This is a big issue for me. There are few professional fields you can do where you can make this kind of money without a graduate degree. On the other hand, software engineering careers are only good for software engineering. It's not like you can leverage your role into one more business focused. You could become a CTO eventually, but that's a big investment of time.
Is there no way you can move into a project manager role, pre-sales, or even manage the development team? I've seen a few coders move up the ranks...but it has been long, and it's only been the creative ones that graduate to higher positions.
 

Elipe

Woodpecker
Good post, and I generally agree.

1) I don't like the culture of most of tech. It's definitely the belly of the beast in terms of SJWs and weaker men. This is getting worse over time. Most of the men you'll meet in tech you probably won't want to hang out with. White girls in tech roles are often the worst you'll ever meet.
Yes, this is hands down the worst part of tech. There is also a disproportional number of trannies in the field, and when you throw in the classic business hierarchies (e.g. trannies being put in as leads and supervisors), that turns the culture real cancerous. Honesty and straightforwardness basically just go out of the window, because nobody wants to have their head put on a pike by the SJW mobs for daring to make a tranny less than perfectly comfortable. That GitHub got rid of [[[Coraline]]] (henceforth, I will be using triple square brackets for tranny names as a symbol of manjaws with triple chins) is a miracle by its own right.

4) The pay is hard to beat, but the job has no transferrable value. This is a big issue for me. There are few professional fields you can do where you can make this kind of money without a graduate degree. On the other hand, software engineering careers are only good for software engineering. It's not like you can leverage your role into one more business focused. You could become a CTO eventually, but that's a big investment of time.
I don't know if I'd say that software engineering has no transferrable value. Like redbeard says, there are management opportunities, but there are also many other fields that can benefit from having software engineering skills, like accounting. You would be able to automate the work you do, and in this day and age of working from home, that could free up a lot of time for side gigs.

6) When shit breaks, the company blames engineers. You have to be very careful to keep up the good will. Unfortunately, the company pushes deadlines that are often unrealistic.
Yeah, I feel you on that one. You really do want to find that unicorn manager that acts very protective of their subordinates. I've had one of those before, and it was amazing, the company was basically terrified of that person because they had, in the past, been a huge legal thorn in the side for the company.

9) Coding is hungry for your time. Software engineering is a hungry field for your personal time since you need to constantly stay on top of technologies and trends and they won't always carve out time for you to do this.
And coding is also hungry for mental energy that could otherwise be directed toward achieving self-employed freedom.
 

FullThrottleTX

Woodpecker
Solid post, but quick question on this line:

Is there no way you can move into a project manager role, pre-sales, or even manage the development team? I've seen a few coders move up the ranks...but it has been long, and it's only been the creative ones that graduate to higher positions.

I don't want to work in corporate America, honestly. I think it's bad.
My first career was in marketing, so those roles I'm familiar with. They definitely don't pay as well or the good jobs are harder to get.
I'd make a pretty good product manager but its a step backwards into my former career.
 
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FullThrottleTX

Woodpecker
I don't know if I'd say that software engineering has no transferrable value. Like redbeard says, there are management opportunities, but there are also many other fields that can benefit from having software engineering skills, like accounting. You would be able to automate the work you do, and in this day and age of working from home, that could free up a lot of time for side gigs.

My skills are way overkill for accounting.
I agree you can use the tech skills, but it's like being a Navy Seal in an environment that needs a mall cop.
 

redbeard

Hummingbird
Moderator
I don't want to work in corporate America, honestly. I think it's bad.
My first career was in marketing, so those roles I'm familiar with. They definitely don't pay as well or the good jobs are harder to get.
I'd make a pretty good product manager but its a step backwards into my former career.
That's a different discussion. My experience has been that within "corporate America," there are plenty of opportunities for advancement.
 

gework

Ostrich
Gold Member
Have you thought about setting up your own site/app/product with your skills?

I penned a thread on what I believe is the lowest bar to entry for programmers to setup their own enterprise: https://www.rooshvforum.com/threads/web-content-curation-datasheet.35928/

I don't have to deal with any people, up until I recently spun out a SaS. I've not had any bosses, clients or people I was beholden to up until that point. This is truly a blessing, as people are the main source of stress in work; and I'd not like to work with programming nerds. It will of course leave you at the computer screen. But if you make a success of it you can hire someone to fulfill that role.
 

FullThrottleTX

Woodpecker
That's a different discussion. My experience has been that within "corporate America," there are plenty of opportunities for advancement.

I work exclusively in corporate America.
I haven't met many engineers that transition (or want to transition) into other areas successfully. Usually it's the other way around, where people are trying to knock down the door to get into engineering. We make more than marketing, (most) sales people, accountants... Until you get into director levels of course. I just don't understand the advantage or benefit of going from tech into something else in the corporate space. You invested a lot for specialized skill set that's much harder than anything anyone else studied, that you may be able to use 10% of somewhere else. Tech is definitely more interesting than sales. Sales people tend to be kind of dumb, no offense to them.
 
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FullThrottleTX

Woodpecker
Have you thought about setting up your own site/app/product with your skills?

I penned a thread on what I believe is the lowest bar to entry for programmers to setup their own enterprise: https://www.rooshvforum.com/threads/web-content-curation-datasheet.35928/

I don't have to deal with any people, up until I recently spun out a SaS. I've not had any bosses, clients or people I was beholden to up until that point. This is truly a blessing, as people are the main source of stress in work; and I'd not like to work with programming nerds. It will of course leave you at the computer screen. But if you make a success of it you can hire someone to fulfill that role.

This is not a bad idea.
I personally am a creative at heart, and that's where I'm focusing my energies.

I do have a friend who was laid off and decided to do freelancing full time. He has since become pretty successful at it, though he is constantly hustling. He wants to go the SaaS product route so he doesn't have to hustle as much. Good for him.
 
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This is a great post. I'm currently a college senior and I spent 3 years majoring in Computer Science. I recently changed to Information systems because I realized that I don't want a job as a coder. I would rather do IT or something more on the business side of technology. I still don't know what I want to do with my life yet, but I do know I don't want to be a software engineer.
 

Neo

Pelican
Gold Member
Agree with this post, although I code it's not my main gig.

An option could be to transfer your skillset into data science/analytics, or mixed quantitative STEM or finance roles.

I find being able to code in an industry where not everyone is a coder gives you a competitive advantage.
 

FullThrottleTX

Woodpecker
Agree with this post, although I code it's not my main gig.

An option could be to transfer your skillset into data science/analytics, or mixed quantitative STEM or finance roles.

I find being able to code in an industry where not everyone is a coder gives you a competitive advantage.

I started as a coder in marketing prolly 12 years ago, and while it did get me a leg up in those hybrid jobs, you're never paid as much as a full stack software engineer. Plus, there's insecurity with being only half a coder. Managing real devs made me want to get out of the half assed scenario and do the full thing... That's basically my story.

I'm a creative personality, I have a project I'm working on that could be profitable in a couple of years.

This is a great post. I'm currently a college senior and I spent 3 years majoring in Computer Science. I recently changed to Information systems because I realized that I don't want a job as a coder. I would rather do IT or something more on the business side of technology. I still don't know what I want to do with my life yet, but I do know I don't want to be a software engineer.

IT people don't give a shit, in a good way. Chill folks, especially outside of the coasts.
Not the worst move to make though with A LOT of professional work being remote now, IT isn't doing so great. Offices are being abandoned left and right and the need to have corporate IT is diminishing a lot.

I wouldn't discourage you from coding for a couple of years, being a young guy. You can make A LOT of money and "retire" early to do something else more creative/independent if you play your cards right, save up, and pay down ALL debt. For me being 37, I just don't want to be a 40yo coder. Don't want to manage engineers either.
 
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