Earlier this week, a debate erupted on Twitter surrounding the qualities and traits of a “good” engineer.
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The now-viral discussion was started by Twitter user @skirani. In it, he describes his version of the “perfect” employee, which he calls a “10X engineer.” This is a person who:
- Hates meetings.
- Works late at night and comes to work later in the day.
- Always changes the defaults on their computer.
- Knows every line of code that has gone into production.
- Is typically a full-stack engineer and rarely does UI work.
- Can “turn thought into code,” and when “given a product feature, [writes] in one or two sittings of 4 to 6 hours with a caffeinated drink without distraction.”
- Rarely looks at help documentation, because he or she can recall everything “from memory.”
- Is always learning new frameworks and languages, ahead of the rest of the company.
- Is a poor mentor and does not perform well in job interviews.
- Writes “quality code” and knows “exactly how the code has to evolve.”
So far, the thread has generated more than 4,300 “likes” and more than a thousand re-tweets.
While some agree:
Others have different views on what makes a “perfect” engineer. Some say a “10X engineer” lacks collaborative skills, which can be damaging to a company’s long-term goals.
Others believe that “10X engineer” traits are indicative of a toxic work environment.
Lastly, some Twitter users say the “perfect” engineer is actually “imperfect,” but can accept help, admit fault, and work with others.
What are your thoughts on the “10X engineer” debate? Feel free to comment below or head over to Twitter to weigh in.