When we think of what makes a successful computer programmer, we often think of the technical skills required. Of course, there are many technical skills needed to become an expert:
- Knowing how to read and write lines of code (not just drag and drop) in different languages
- Computational logic for understanding how computers work and think
- Creating different logic structures within code like loops, conditions and objects
- Critical thinking in challenging subjects like math and statistics
However, there is another skill set, vital for a person’s success, that is often overlooked: soft skills.
The Importance of Soft Skills for Programmers
Soft skills are known as the people skills. They require our emotional intelligence and help us interact with others. These skills are as likely to get you the job as specific technical programming skills. Soft skills for programmers are considered the ones needed to work well with and lead others.
Tech leadership programs must guide students to be empathetic, confident leaders, capable of dreaming with focus and capable of the research needed to implement their dreams with conviction.
5 Soft Skills Kids Can Develop Thanks to Computer Programming
1. Decision Making
Every business, whether big or small, needs to make decisions at some point. Decision making allows kids to identify a problem and arrive at a solution. When working in groups, kids will need to consider fairness, as well as how to interpret others' feelings.
2. Goal Setting
Goal setting can lead to greater success and performance. Edward Locke and Gary Latham (1990), leaders in goal setting, say that goal setting helps to mobilize energy that leads to greater effort which can therefore result in a greater chance of success. In business, goal setting can lead to greater productivity and motivation.
3. Interpersonal Skills:
When working in teams, kids must be able to communicate their ideas and problems in order to overcome them. They learn how to translate ideas into code, interpret others’ ideas and ask clarifying questions. Working on coding projects in teams teaches collaboration as well as accountability.
4. Public Speaking
Kids will need to develop public speaking skills to use throughout their school and work careers. Public speaking can actually help in job interviews when you have to think on the spot. Public speaking can also help kids gain performance skills, become more self-confident, and develop their vocabularies. Good leaders are able to argue a point and influence an audience on novel ideas, thoughts and perspectives.
Hatch students learn to compile research from multiple sources of information, and solve problems independently. Hatch student Rishi says learning Python made him more self-sufficient. It required him to research using multiple tools and sources and be smart with his time management.