Why every developer should be on YouTube

It has been close to a year since I opened Sublime (my then IDE, which I substituted with VS Code) and saved

1<h1>Hello Kisho, you are going to be the best front end developer in world </h1>

I type phrases like this instead of Hello World or some gibberish since these positive affirmations help me push myself harder. Seeing this text appear on the screen after the hot reload was one of the best feelings I have not experienced for some time. It was very trivial, I know, but for someone like me who had looked at IDEs of other developers and considered themselves to be magicians doing something I could never do, this was a big deal.

After this, some months went by as I was coming to grips with HTML/CSS and things like Boostrap and Flexbox. During these months I tried to focus on making projects on my own which to be quiet fair look horrendous when I look at them now. But hey, I was still immensely proud of my work. And then I thought that it was high time to learn some JavaScript and boy did that feel like a kick in the guts. JavaScript to me at first was just incomprehensible and the first time that I really got demotivated because I just did not understand its logic. This kind of silly thinking was made worse by the fact that I kept telling myself silly things like “Maybe it’s because programming is not for you” (I wish I could go back and kick myself for saying such nonsense to myself now). I went through a little over a month with such depressing thoughts till I got sick of it and told myself I will force myself to learn JavaScript if it’s the last thing I do in this world. The first place I started was with a YouTube video which was on how to make a ToDo list (I know, I know, every time someone makes a ToDo List, a puppy dies somewhere 😢 ) because I thought it would be easy. 

It wasn’t. But I did it. I then used what I learnt to make something else. Then I watched a different YouTube video on making a music keyboard with JavaScript and used what I learnt from my version of the ToDo List to make this Rude Noise Maker app (which just played fart and other rude noises when you pressed a button). I did this routine where I would watch something, add it to the knowledge I already had to create something several times and in 2 months I was beginning to feel that JavaScript would not be the death of my journey to become a great front-end developer. And in the months that followed, I learnt JavaScript ES6, React (class components first and then hooks), Google Firestore (great easy to set up backend by the way) and Gatsby (my favourite way to build super-fast static sites now). 

Why I started my YouTube channel

shot of KishoCodes YouTube channel

I learnt all of the frameworks in the previous sentence because I pushed myself to learn JavaScript. And this happened because I saw that one video on how to make a ToDo List on YouTube. So the reason I am starting a YouTube channel is to do the same. If my tutorials could help even one person I would be the happiest person out there to know that I have made even the smallest difference 😊. I do however believe that this YouTube channel will also give several other uses and thought I’d write it down here in case you are getting tired of hearing my personal stories 😉 .

1. Having a YouTube Channel helps me become a better teacher and developer

Albert Einstein once said that “If you can’t explain it to a six-year-old, you don’t understand it yourself.” and this is a quote I firmly live by as I have been a teacher for over 3 years in several universities before I started coding and have discovered this to be true. Recording myself on YouTube makes me realise several things 

  • My voice does not sound too good in my ears (I apologise if you feel the same way)

  • I do not know what I am talking about enough to teach it

  • I need to polish my delivery of thought and make it more comprehensible

These insights then make me go back to the drawing board, learn what I need to learn to fix the above issues and then deliver the content in an easier to understand manner. Doing this and understanding the topic in this depth then makes me a better developer. 

2. Exposure

Having a YouTube channel definitely give me exposure as it is another channel through which clients can find me in addition to my Website, Medium and LinkedIn. Having such a channel I believe lends me credibility in the eyes of the client as they are hiring me for my expertise which they get an understanding of via my YouTube videos. I say this as this is how I feel if I was searching for a developer for my project + based on conversations I have had with my friends and family. 

3. Making new friends 

By sharing my knowledge and learnings, I hope to make new friends in my fans and fellow YouTubing developers and improve my social skills. From what I have already seen on other YouTube channels, it might also be a good place to improve my ability to deal with negative comments (because let’s face it, not everyone might agree with me). 

4. It might help me get headhunted or improve my chances of landing  a job 

Before I even started writing a single of code, I reached out to and interviewed a lot of friends and friends of friends who are involved in hiring developers for their companies. The overarching theme from these conversations was that companies today are not looking for developers who are only proficient in their technical skills. Companies today are looking for employees who are technically proficient (and no, you can even be self-taught without a CS degree), but also those who are willing to undertake continuous learning, take part in knowledge sharing, speak English and be a good cultural fit. Starting a YouTube channel helps display almost all of these, so hey who knows, I might even land a job thanks to this channel!

5. Generate some side-income with YouTube

Sure, I might not have a huge number of subscribers now, but who is to say that I won’t one day? At the moment I might not be the best developer-oriented YouTube channel out there, but If I keep improving myself with regard to this and be patient and consistent, there is nothing to stop me from earning a few extra bucks here and there.

Conclusion

I believe that starting a YouTube channel will really help me become a better developer and improve my chances of landing more clients. Starting this channel was not easy as I was worried about whether I would be liked but after some thinking I have come to realise that it does not matter. What matters is that I will try to teach all I know in the easiest possible way to understand and make a difference in the life of at least one developer who might be stuck with a problem I had some time back. If I can make that difference, I am happy. 

Here is the link to my YouTube channel. I would love it if you could show me some support by subscribing or sharing this 😊

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