Communicates well

It’s important that you let people around you know how you’re doing. Can you see a problem that might impact somebody else? Do you have knowledge that should be shared with your team? Knowing when and how to communicate information out and away from yourself is an important skill.

Note: Sometimes going deeper on your own to learn more is appropriate too.

Collaborates well

So much of what we do involves other people. Figuring out how to work better in groups is crucial. Do you do what you say you will when you say you will? Are you dependable? How easily can you get behind ideas that aren’t your own?

From improv: Do you strive to accept every offer and make your partners look good?

Handles responsibilty

You’re a part of something bigger. There are a bunch of people counting on you to deliver on the problem you’ve been asked to solve. Sometimes this is easy because you’ve done it before or because you got lucky with earlier decisions. What do you do when things aren’t easy? Your team should probably know you’re struggling. And you should be comfortable changing a plan up in ways that are consistent with business goals on the fly.

Handles failure

Failure is a thing that happens more often than people talk about. (Lately talking about failure outside companies has become more widely accepted.) It will happen to you. What do you do when it does? Do you learn, regroup, and try something else? Do you ask for help? Do you communicate how you’re doing to the people around you?

Opinion: If you aren’t failing, chances are you aren’t reaching far enough, and maybe you’re not growing.

Enjoys learning

Our field is moving so quickly. It’s far better that you know how to learn than you know about any particular thing. It’s easier to teach a team member about a new technology that it is how to learn.

Truth: Mentors seriously dampen learning curves. Find willing ones, learn from them, and express you eternal gratitude always. :)

Problem solving skills

Knowing how to get from here to there when you have no clue where to begin is so important. Problem solving, coming up with ideas without getting too attached to them, running experiments, and learning are all things that are happening continuously throughout this process. Get comfortable with the process.