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Langr Software Solutions » The Consulting Legitimacy Cycle: 4+ years to 2 weeks

Langr Software Solutions » The Consulting Legitimacy Cycle: 4+ years to 2 weeks — Main Menu — Home Consulting / Coaching Training - Information About Training - Student Quotes - Technical Training - Process Training Resources - Agile in a Flash blog - Articles - Jeff’s Wiselike Page (Q&A!) - Books Jeff’s Blog About Home Consulting / Coaching Training Information About Training Student Quotes Technical Training Process Training Resources Agile in a Flash blog Articles Jeff’s Wiselike Page (Q&A!) Books Jeff’s Blog About The Consulting Legitimacy Cycle: 4+ years to 2 weeks September 13, 2016 By Jeff Langr 0 Comment Four years ago this month, I wrote “ The Consulting Legitimacy Cycle ,” a post about cycling between predominantly consulting/training and predominantly in-team software development. At the time I’d been consulting for about 15 months, and was pondering when I might next return to full-time development. It turns out that the answer was “a little more than a year.” I signed on to Outpace Systems as a remote developer in August 2013, and wound down my other engagements to be fully engaged with Outpace by the end of the year. Thus after about 2 and a half years on the consulting side of the cycle, I switched to the development side, where I would spend almost 2 and a half years. Outpace would turn out to be the biggest challenge I’d had in a long time: a pile of new technologies with which I had little familiarity kept me under water for at least the first six months. I’ll be honest and blunt: I felt like an idiot for a half year. During those first six months at Outpace, I would bounce virtually every day or every other day to something completely different. It kind of works when pairing… but it sure takes a long time to ramp up on something! We began to replace Ruby with Clojure a couple months in, which was great. But when you code in a new language for a day, and then don’t touch it for a week, it takes a long time to get proficient. At maybe a day a week, it took me six months before I began to feel reasonably comfortable in Clojure. (Among the bigger learning curve elements: using a Mac daily for the first time, the sheer hell of learning Emacs for someone with a solid preference for vim, and for the longest time, a New Library of the Week. See “ Surviving Chaos With Pairing ” for the complete list of technologies.) The upside: I picked up a pile of skills and an updated understanding of the daily feeling of being a real team member, as opposed to experiencing it from the outside as a consultant/coach/trainer. And the regular success we had in delivering software to happy customers lends a lot of credibility to what I learned about process and technique. I’m convinced that my regular cycling back into “real” development is what helps me relate so well to teams I work with as a coach. They can tell if you really appreciate and understand what their daily life is like. The downside: the business languishes. I managed to sneak in a few short engagements (mostly training) each year by using vacation. But I was too swamped to invest much energy otherwise: I wrote only a single blog post in two years, my web site started to crumble a bit (and continued to look increasingly outdated), I didn’t tweet much, and most other forms of outreach to customers, existing or potential, languished. In February of this year, I chose to re-start Langr Software Solutions based on the financial assurance of a regular bi-weekly gig that should last until the end of the year. This time around, I decided that continuing to help deliver real software was going to be in important aspect of sustaining the viability of the business as well. As such, I chose to continue providing services to Outpace, and I’m also seeking to close a freelance development gig. I’m hoping this continued involvement in “real” software deliver will prevent me from ever having to halt in order to take a full-time development gig again, and will help me keep the business continually vibrant and available. Maybe my Consulting Legitimacy Cycle will change from 2+ years for a half cycle (4+ years for the full cycle) to about a week. About the Author It's my site! Also please check out the About page . Social Share Leave a Reply Cancel reply Name * Email * Website Anti-Spam * Search this site Recent Posts The Compulsive Coder, Episode 7: Please AAA November 15, 2016 The Compulsive Coder, Episode 6: this Duplication is Killing Me October 19, 2016 The Consulting Legitimacy Cycle: 4+ years to 2 weeks September 13, 2016 The Compulsive Coder, Episode 5: Extract Method Flow September 7, 2016 The Compulsive Coder, Episode 4: You Create, It Assigns August 30, 2016 Contact Me Name Email Message Submit Langr Software Solutions, Inc. / Jeff Langr I've been there and seen just about everything: Professional developer for 33+ years Consultant helping customers learn and succeed since 2002 Author of five books on software development I can help you with: hands-on TDD m