Coders Vs Creators

Steven Kneiser
3-minute read

“Wait, I’m here to become a Coder
Why should I care about Creators?”

What you should be asking is
who hires developers? why?
& dig beyond the trivial answer

I harp on this so much
because I believe this is the key
to a profound new way of communicating your value

“Coder” or “Software Engineer” might sound higher status than “Creator” these days. I mean, anyone can be a creator: why would you want to be something that just anyone can be when you can be something more exclusive, something other’s can’t?

It all has to do with how others perceive the value you offer

As a coder, you don’t just “code”

You create time
You create space
You create opportunity to do more
(than they’ve ever done before)

What sounds more enticing?
If I could save you $20
or earn you $40?

That’s why nobody cares about cost
in the tech industry

You don’t save them 30 minutes every day with your software: you give them back 30 more minutes with their kids. You don’t sell time: you sell experiences, by getting obstacles out of their way.

Aren’t people who code in shorter supply?
…and therefore in greater demand?

Sure, anyone can be a creator, but not every creator can tap into the depths of software. All things being equal, of course someone who can code offers more than the exact same person who can’t, but life is never that simple.

When you learn to code, there’s a sprint to learn all the trending tools. There’s an ever-present feeling of “not enough” as you pursue lifelong learning (a defining trait of knowledge work). You’ll never know as much as you want to, but the good news is that doesn’t make you a bad apple.

Eventually you’ll get some confidence,
confidence to look around & ask:

“Wait. What the heck
are we actually trying to do here?”

It sounds so basic, so simple but you get distracted chasing the illusion of mastery. When you’re just starting out, you get handed relatively complete problems with well-defined inputs & desired outputs
(e.g. “we need you to connect A & B”)

The goal isn’t mastery over tools (although that is a rewarding side-quest with confidence boosts along the way). The goal is to move on to the more meaningful questions that aren’t as well-defined.

We’re helping you make that evolution

The best coders know when not to code

The only bug-free software
is no software at all

They appreciate & seek out the context behind why they’re doing the work they’re doing. They think “does this require software, a screencast, or a blog post?”

This is why you’re secretly a Creator™
You’re not just a hammer looking for nails

“When you’re a hammer, everything starts looking like nails.”

You’re more than your toolbelt

You’re here to make meaningful solutions,
not fit old answers to new problems

Lean into that reality
just a little more

Why code …when you can create?
Why good …when you can be great?

Is this very relevant to you?

Did I offer a clear next action?

Should I write more on this?

I love hearing your
comments & questions!

Send me an email at
(I always respond with twice the word count)

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