Jack of all trades, master of a few

Planted: 2024-05-23
Last tended: 2024-05-23

When I started my job, I was primarily using C# and building websites using the Microsoft stack. I would call myself a “C# developer” or “.NET developer”, almost like a job posting title. Once I started playing around with the JavaScript frameworks, I started like them for how easy it is to get something out the door, especially today with NextJS, Remix, etc and Vercel/Netlify/Cloudflare hosting options.

Now I longer call myself a “.NET developer”. I’m a Software Engineer. The languages and frameworks are simply a tool to get the job done. The risk with this thought process is becoming a jack of all trades and a master of none. Not that there is anything wrong with that. But I believe it is important, especially in the world of AI, to go deep on certain things, beyond the basics and into the weeds.

Being a T-shaped person is crucial today. “Jack of all trades, master of few” extends that. You are an expert in more than one area.

You have to give many things a chance to know which ones you want to go further into. You also have to stick with anything you give a chance long enough to become a generalist and decide if you want to become a specialist.

Being a generalist is fun, you get to try a lot things. Being a specialist - where you go beyond where most people go - will make you standout and you will be irreplaceable.

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