In my daily work, I lead teams that build software. These are “line of business” or “enterprise” software systems. I come into contact with a lot of developers, all with differing backgrounds, experience levels and personalities. I see the good and the bad. Pride generally stands out as the most accurate quality indicator of the individual developer.

Having pride in your work makes you want to improve. If you are mindful of the effects that your work has on others, that can only lead to a better career path. First, you need to be self-aware and able to see your work through the eyes of a co-worker. Then you need to have the foresight to adjust your behavior accordingly.

Ask your self these questions, they all show pride in your work:

How can I communicate more effectively with the team?

Be clear and concise. Don’t ramble. Stay on topic, avoid distractions. Drive the conversation forward. Don’t speak if you have nothing to say. When you speak, add value. Listen. Yield to the experts. Challenge but don’t create conflict. Keep everything on a business level. Take time understand context. Provide context.

How can I make my self more valuable to the team?

Follow through on your commitments. Don’t get in over your head. Mentor others. Give constructive feedback. Call out issues early. Be proactive. Always give 100%. Be consistent. Take ownership. Take responsibility for mistakes.

What can I do to help others more easily discover the design of this component?

Use descriptive variable names (even on private / local members). Add comments to code that is not obviously understood. Use the built-in documentation conventions of your language. Name classes, properties and methods in a logical and consistent way.

All of this ultimately forms your reputation as a developer. All you have is your reputation. I have moved jobs a fews times in my career and I can tell you that having a network of people who are aware of your capabilities is the best possible resource when it’s time for job hunting.