You can become a programmer by studying for and gaining recognized qualifications, but becoming a good programmer takes more than that. In fact it takes several specific skills to be successful in this ever growing industry - which we look at in more detail here. 1. Problem-Solving Skills Most software is designed to meet a need, which is recognized after spotting a ‘problem’, or a gap in capabilities. Computer programmers need to be great at identifying and solving issues for a range of industries, as well as fixing subsequent error codes which come up. The good news is that even if problem-solving doesn’t come naturally there are lots of online resources which help you practice and develop this, as well as everyday activities like Sudoku, crosswords and even jigsaws. The important thing is that you enjoy solving problems; as if you don’t the job will be a constant drain on your life. 2. Good Memory Skills Even though a programmer’s brain is often overloaded with high volumes of instructions and information there’s no room for errors caused by forgetfulness. It pays to train yourself to focus completely on one task at a time rather than flitting between things. There are also some amazing brain training resources available free online to strengthen memory skills. 3. Self Motivation With dozens of tasks to complete and crucial deadlines to meet being able to work independently and prioritize work is vital. Due to the nature of the job it’s not unusual for programmers to do some work remotely, generally from home. Busy fools work hard but achieve less than those who use their time efficiently and waste none of it. Some people struggle to complete tasks when they have all day to do it, so learning to set deadlines of your own, and even your own targets to reach, can only help. 4 . Perseverance Being able to keep going when tasks don’t work out as expected, or as fast as you needed them to, is also very important. Programming can be frustrating at times, and involve abandoning work done for a new approach which is more useful – so if you struggle to do that it’s a skill to learn, and quick. 5 . Good Communication Skills Being able to communicate information, ideally both verbally and in writing, in a clear, useful, and understandable way to colleagues and clients is pretty crucial for a programmer. If too much face-to-face time is challenging at least try to excel at the written side of things, so you can do as much as possible via less direct routes, like email. If you already feel fully accomplished in all the skill areas covered here then congratulations, but if you are rusty or weak in some of them it’s never too late to get started on learning how to gain certain skills, if you want to do it badly enough. To improve your skills and knowledge of coding, check out Simple Programmer.