Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Deliberate Practice

Today’s programmers are constantly sprinting towards deadlines. The typical programmer spends their day in meetings and then it’s back to working on user stories. They never get the time to grow, learn, and reflect because of the constant grind and pressure that is placed on them. Although some companies do offer time for developers to learn on the clock, the sad truth is that most don’t.

I’m lucky to be on a team that embraces learning. We meet for Learning Hour sessions where we explore technical practices such as refactoring, TDD, clean code, and evolutionary design. Coding together during these sessions have improved our morale and overall effectiveness.

In other professions, such as pilots, surgeons, and athletes they all schedule deliberate practice. Practice ensures that our actions during game-time will be second nature. By drilling small techniques and conditioning ourselves, we gain more confidence to face the unknown challenges of working on production code.

In my talk, I will go over some strategies developers can use to improve their technical skills like:

  • how to find time to practice
  • how to create a culture of learning
  • how to introduce Learning Hours to your team
  • how to use ensemble programming as a learning tool



Steven Diamante

Steven Diamante is a software craftsman who’s purpose is to coach development teams on technical excellence so that they can have more fun and deliver more business value. He enjoys working ...