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How Personal Projects Can Turn IT Geeks into IT Chic

Ann Velikaya, copywriter at MadAppGang
Ann Velikaya

Trust us: personal projects aren't just about coding and caffeine. They're the secret sauce that transforms tech geeks into tech chic. 

In this article, we’re highlighting how personal projects can make IT specialists shine brighter than the LED lights on their gaming keyboards.

1. Hands-on learning: Or "Ctrl + Alt + Learning"

Buttons labelled Ctrl, Alt, Learn and MadAppGang's logo

Personal projects are the ultimate playground for IT specialists. It's like going from reading a user manual to being the user manual. 

You get to test your skills, tinker with new technologies, and, let's be honest, break a few things along the way. But hey, the best way to learn is by debugging your own creative disasters, right?

2. Skill diversification: Tech buffet, anyone?

The drawn man stands on a scale between a blue and orange square labelled diversity and skill sets respectively

IT is like a buffet of skills, and personal projects are your chance to feast on every delicious dish. If coding is your main course, why not spice it up with some cybersecurity dessert? 

Add a side dish of database management, and voila! You're not just a developer anymore; you're a multi-talented IT connoisseur ready to take on any challenge.

As MadAppGang's backend software engineer Eugene Simonov puts it: 

"For several months, I actively maintained a linter. It proved to be an incredibly engaging experience, delving into the realm of Abstract Syntax Trees, despite my daily job having no direct connection to this subject matter. Eventually, I submitted this linter to the golangici-lint project, and it turned out to be a more involved process than I initially anticipated. Contributing to a larger-scale project undoubtedly offers valuable lessons for any developer.

This project presented me with a fantastic opportunity to dive into the world of test-driven development (TDD). This experience has inspired me to incorporate TDD more frequently into my professional workflow. If there's one thing I can take away from what might seem like an unrelated endeavor, it's this - experience is an extraordinary teacher."

If you want to know how to handle refactoring, MadAppGang's CEO Anton Kalinin advises.

3. Portfolio development: Geek cred level - over 9000!

A tablet, an open folder with papers, a pencil, a pen and a cup lying on a surface

Picture this: you're at a job interview, and instead of talking about your love of cats and your superior coding skills, you whip out your portfolio filled with personal projects. 

Suddenly, you're not just a candidate; you're a tech wizard with a magical touch. Those personal projects are your golden ticket to impressing employers, clients, and even fellow geeks at tech meetups.

Here’s what MadAppGang's full-stack software engineer Denis Ivanov said: 

“Joining MadAppGang for my first professional gig was a dream come true, and it was all thanks to a few of my successful pet projects. Juggling coding and my day job was quite the journey. These personal undertakings not only expanded my skill set but also beefed up my portfolio significantly.

It was during my interview with MadAppGang that the magic of my pet projects truly shone. The team was impressed by the passion and dedication I'd poured into these side endeavors, which showcased my potential as a developer.

The moral of the story is clear: in the tech world, personal pet projects can be your golden ticket, opening doors to exciting career opportunities you've always dreamed of”.

4. Problem-solving skills: Turning bugs into features

Three young men next to the MadAppGang's logo, one of whom is wondering, the second is reflecting, and the third has found a solution to the problem

In the world of IT, problem-solving is an art form. Personal projects provide you with the perfect canvas to unleash your creativity and turn those bugs into features. 

Embrace the challenges, dance with the bugs, and let your problem-solving skills shine. Who knows? Maybe your ability to fix a crashed system will become the stuff of legend in IT folklore.

5. Networking and collaboration: Geek squad goals

Schematic representation of networking between people from different continents

Personal projects don't have to be solo missions. They can also be opportunities for networking and collaboration. Join online communities, share your work, and connect with fellow IT enthusiasts. 

You might find a mentor who can guide you through the virtual maze or stumble upon a project that leads to the career of your dreams. Remember, geeks unite!

And there you have it, fellow tech enthusiasts! Personal projects are the secret ingredient that can transform any IT specialist into an IT superstar. They offer a playground for learning, a buffet for skill diversification, and a ticket to geek cred paradise. 

So, grab your coding cape, don your glasses, and embark on your personal project adventure. It's time to level up your IT game while enjoying every step of the hilarious, caffeine-fueled journey. Happy coding, fellow geeks!