Why developers are determining the future of your business

Cloudtract / Blog, Startup Starter

The future? Really? Do developers have some secret future-visionary insight power I don’t know about? What can they do? See what’s about to happen through a glass bowl or read tea leaves? Create the future? Well in a way, they do. Just think of this for a moment: you are reading this blog, probably on your computer, iPad or smartphone. Laid back sitting at home on your couch, hunched back in an office chair or standing in the train. IT-Tech allows us to find, create and spread content, instantly and however or whenever the heck we want. Using multi-device technology interlinked, to browse the web, download apps and build imaginary Farmville kingdoms online, all thanks to the brilliance of developers, engineers and coders of this world.

As the world has been evolving towards digital innovation, future tech will remain to play a huge part in our lives. In order to stay ahead in your business and still matter in 2020, consumer insight requires to apply new tech and IT to make your business fit consumer’s demands. Meaning: you will have to learn to work with IT leaders and developers. Enter the value of this blog post: as an IT-rookie, working with software developers for 6 months now, my appreciation and awareness of IT has grown significantly. I’ve also found out pretty quickly that developers are a different breed of people (as are marketers for that matter). And that programmers and coders actually play a huge part in building brands, translating visions and determining the future success of your business.

Your business and IoT

With the influence of internet and future tech growing enormously, market research indicates that as a digital society, the domain of tech, cloud technology, big data and the internet of things can impact the value propositions of your business. For the better. Imagine how many systems and applications are already used at your company today. This alone proves the importance of IT and the argument why developers are actually determining the future of your business: simply because the implementation and innovation of features within your business or product, is depending on the capabilities of (your) developers who made this work.

With tech offering opportunities to simplify the lives of the ‘always-on consumers’, B2B businesses are best to embed technologies in their products and services, which allow them to enhance customer experiences. Aimed to fit products to their lifestyle, this changes the way we live, shop and do business. Remember the time you needed the (thick-hard-copy versioned) Yellow Pages or Phonebook to find a store or restaurant? Now we can find and compare stores, shop for products online, read reviews and post your own customer service review, connect to store employees via social media and experience (luxury) services like: order before noon and get same-day delivery. We’ve adapted and changed our mentalities and attitudes towards consumer’s usage of new tech. Creating new sharing economies, new innovative, entrepreneurial and startup hubs that allowed companies like Uber, AirBnB and SoundCloud to exist. IT unravels new grounds accompanied by new values, like privacy and security of data, slowly but certainly reshaping the world we live in.

Developers rule the world

Just look closer at what’s beneath these words on your (touch) screen: dots, ones and zeros? Particles that structure letters, coded into a script that are linked through software and program languages like Java, C++, Python, HTML and PHP. With every great new, innovative idea (or feature for that matter) involving some IT- or tech based roots, it’s the developer who must design and code the idea, translating concepts towards simplicity and added value in our lives. What does this mean? Basically: developers rule the world. Indeed, for business and brands, the creation of innovative products with cool features requires both the brain of the visionary marketer and the developer. But we need to understand the value of developers as well. Ten years ago, developers helped determine our present lifestyle as we are living it, today. For sure they didn’t do this alone, but still. So it’s relevant to have the best developers on board and that you learn to understand them and how to connect with them. Appreciation of the developer is the first step towards understanding this special breed.

The Developer

Slowly, but accurately the developer assesses their objective first, before they dismantle it. Spotting any loose rocks ahead that can cause clutter or noise, staying out of the wind and low in the grass, so they won’t disturb any bugs or leave any marks. For a developer, the world is simple. The road towards success? Is logical yet, calculated. Therefore, life (tasks) has to be packed with clarity and structure. The more structured, the better. As these are relevant terms, we come to the best tip for the non-developer-minded among us: seek what the developer needs, to be productive. Communication is absolute key. It’s obvious that software and hardware development contains complex architectures and systems. Whether I copy-paste values in Excel, or select a dancing bear as my screensaver, it’s all the result of a designed, mapped architecture of written code. There is a reason why you are not a computer programmer and developers are. So embrace the fact that there’s a significant difference in how ‘computer people’ view business (and the world basically). Ask them and find a way to figure out what makes your developers tick and discuss the way they would like to be briefed. Because to program a dancing bear as a screen saver, they first need to understand that a Grizzly doing the cha-cha-cha is way better than when one doing the Tango. And yes, sometimes the difference needs to be demonstrated if necessary.

Building business together

Over-enthusiastically trying to explain a marketing-campaign probably won’t impress a developer for one bit. When broken down more methodically however, and deciphering your advertising mambo jumbo it into tangible notes of IT-requirements, you might be surprised how developers may start to appreciate the concept of your campaign. As programmers, coders, developers are commonly known to kick ass, they are also known for their analytical mind. Draw concepts on a piece of paper and be proactive in asking them to explain their sense of thought to you. It is said that behind every successful company stands a team of great tech and developer guys. This team is led by leaders who understand the differences between people, and are able to communicate their brilliance in a brief the developers understand. That’s the way to create awesome work.

When we are in business together, we are building a business. Together. To innovate we need a holistic approach that requires both minds. Whether you´re entrepreneurs, startup founders, investors, business marketers or PR managers, working with developers can create the digital innovations we need for tomorrow’s consumer. So as we all are different, what is the most important binding factor that must connect us all? A shared and unified vision. Successful innovation does not solely depend on your developers. It depends on you, as an entire team. Stay clear on what you want, and how you want it. Translate your (brand) vision in all aspects of your business, and you´ll be more empowered and synced, resulting in pure clarity for building the company you want, together with your development team. As working together starts with understanding. Building together, starts with leadership. At least, that´s my experience.