A couple of ago if you asked most people if they should learn to code, the answer would be absolutely and unequivocally “no”.
This opinion has shifted somewhat since then. And many business owners, entrepreneurs, graphic designers and bloggers are starting to see the value of learning a digital language in an increasingly digital world.
But there’s still those of us that have our reservations about learning a new skill, investing our previous time and money into something we don’t yet fully understand.
1. It’s too hard for me
This is arguably most common response you’ll hear from someone who’s nervous about learning how to code.
Let me break it down for you - there are many, many coding languages, so just to clarify, when we say ‘coding’ we’re primarily referring to HTML and CSS. These two languages are the main building blocks a website. Think of HTML as a way of describing to a screen what different elements of your website are – this is a header, this is a blue button – that sort of thing.
CSS is what styles the raw text, taking HTML elements from those ugly website you saw in the 90s to the slick facades of high-end businesses.
Once you know this, you have somewhere to start. Before you learn this, it’s easy to think that code is some binary language or something to do with the Matrix.
The good news is that there are limitless resources to help you get the ball rolling. Online is a great place to start. Free resources such as Codecademy and code.org are great to play around with the very basics of code in your own time. As a long-term strategy there are definitely a lot of hurdles, but it’s ideal for absolute beginners who are curious.
For a more in-depth introduction to code, short one or two day intensives are a great way to experience both theory and practical skills with the guidance of a mentor. Then, when you’re ready to get more serious with a coding bootcamp, you’ll feel less out of your depth.
2. I’m not good with computers
Coding isn’t just for the most computer-literate kings of the technological world. Rather, it’s something that can be built upon you’re existing skills – or lack thereof.
You don’t need to be amazingly tech savvy to learn to code. If you know how to send an email then, congratulations, you’re qualified. You don’t need any fancy or expensive computer programs either, and can begin to write code on any ordinary text editor.
Code? Is that you?
3. I don’t have the time
Almost all of us are guilty of hiding behind this excuse. Here’s the thing - the time you should invest in something is completely relative to how valuable the outcome will be.
It’s easy to see the value if you want to be a web developer but how can coding benefit you in other career paths?
First of all, you should know how much learning to code can save you time!
Want to update your website without spending loads of cash on a web developer? Coding allows you to alter content on your website, make basic changes, troubleshoot problems and not spend more than you need to on web developers.
It also helps when it comes to designing online newsletters and emails. Stock standard templates almost never exactly match what you need. CSS can change that!
There’s nothing worse than not working at the capacity that you’re capable of. When you feel completely powerless in the digital/online aspects of you workplace, coding can help you get back in the driver’s seat.
Bottom line is this – almost every industry conducts business online these days. As technology advances, everything is becoming more connected and digital and those that understand the system will excel, and everyone else will be left behind.
4. It’s too expensive
It’s easy to assume that learning to code is an expensive process.
There are an enormous amount of avenues available for someone looking to learn to code. Your options range from free online courses and one day intensives to intensive 10 day bootcamps and 4-5 year computer programming degrees. Each of these options come with very different price tags and require different time commitments.
Deciding which option is best for you depends on what you want to get out of your training, your timeframe and your budget. Whatever the case, research will be your best friend. Here’s two things to keep in mind to choose the right option for you:
1. Be clear on your goals and expectations before even looking at options
2. Search for value over price
If you are looking at making a career out of coding or wanting to create websites for customers, definitely look at investing in a program where you will get some one-on-one guidance from experienced mentors.
5. It’s not relevant to me
I don’t want to build websites as a career, so why should I bother?
By not learning to code you are seriously diminishing your scope of expertise. And as technology progresses, it will only get worse. This is not an exaggeration, it’s the truth.
Without any coding knowledge you are putting yourself in a very vulnerable position where you are completely dependent on developers for their knowledge. As an employee, this puts your job at risk and as a business owner you are forfeiting control over a critical part of your business – and spending lots of money for the privilege.
I’ve learned far too much about how coding makes the digital world go round. It’s not only the most relevant skill you could have to future-proof your career, but it’s also completely attainable by anyone.
Tired of excuses? Apply for one of our Web Development Bootcamps.