The Power of Knowledge Sharing

The web is constantly developing and growing at a fast pace. I often wonder how beginners even know where to start and marvel at their ability to not be daunted by the myriad of options available to today’s developers.

I started my web developing career when there was a clear distinction between HTML, CSS and JavaScript. I remember using table based layout but quickly processed to floats for layout and some simple JavaScript for things like rollovers.

With all the new technology and techniques that are coming thick and fast it’s easy to feel like you are getting left behind. Being able to quickly learn new things quickly is a massive gain to you skills and this is where knowledge sharing can really come into it’s own.

Working with such a great team at Headscape means there is always lots of ideas being bandied around and everyone is vey keen to stay on top of their area. Now we are firmly using Drupal 8 for projects we decided we should try and make knowledge sharing more formal.

Documentation

We have created a site specifically to detail how to do Drupal 8 specific tasks. It’s becoming a great reference point and as people refer to pages other have created they can improve and contribute to them. This has the dual benefits of improving the documentation while allowing team members to quickly get up to speed with a task.

The way we have approached this is to document everything in a simple concise manner, imagining we were referring a junior developer to the documentation to help them learn. So it’s entirely possible that in the future this documentation can help other, not just the present team.

Presentations

When someone in the team feels they have something sufficient to share with everyone we do short presentations. Again this has dual purposes, quickly share knowledge with others and spark conversations. It often leads us off on tangents, relative ones though. This has helped clear up outstanding questions on numerous subjects.

Motivation

Being in a productive environment where everyone is enthusiastic to produce good work really rubs off on the whole team. Watching a colleague present on work makes me want to do the same and help those around me.

I appreciate I’m lucky to be surrounded with the team that I am and a lot of people in our industry are freelancers and work alone. If you are one of those people I’d strongly encourage you to find a community or forum where you can find others to share and learn with.

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