I replied:Here is a bit more on why I find Code & Coffee events valuableFolks working away at NOVACode & CoffeeGreat for networkingTo get the most out of Code & Coffee it is important to network.
Everyone does this differently and there is no right or wrong way to do it.
For me, I do my best to connect via LinkedIn or Twitter with the folks I meet and chat with.
Makes your work less lonelyThinking back to graduate school we had these “writing groups.
” The best writing groups were weekly and included a core group that would commit to being there each week.
The best writing groups started with a short discussion where everyone shares what they want to work on for the day and what their goals are.
Then everyone gets to work.
Likewise, the Code & Coffee events start out with introductions where everyone shares what they do for a living, what they’re working on that day, what they might want help with (if anything), and what they can help others with (if anything).
A place to go for helpI don’t ask for or need help every time I go to a Code & Coffee.
But, when I do need or want help I know I can find it there.
I’ve never been let down by the quality of that help.
A place to practice helping othersI’ve been asked for help a few times since going to Code & Coffee.
Sometimes I feel like I have something to contribute, other times I’m stumped.
But, the opportunity to share in someone else’s struggle is usually a welcome distraction from my own struggles.
It is a reminder that everyone starts someplace.
I’m not sure I can think of another experience that is as profoundly both humbling and inspirational.
Great for productivityMy guilty secret is that sometimes I don’t work on a project that involves coding.
Or maybe I’ll work on a project that once did involve coding, or eventually will involve coding, but at that moment doesn’t require coding.
This means I might be reading up on methods, I might be sketching conceptual frameworks, or I might be attending Udemy/Lynda/Udacity (or similar) class.
I might even just be using the time to catch up on email.
Bottom line, it is a protected window of time that I can devote to being productive.
Heading into Saturday’s NOVA Code & Coffee hosted by CustomInk.
comConclusionI recommend Code & Coffee for anyone interested in an opportunity to meet other techie folks, in getting help with a techie project, in helping others with a techie project, or in having protected time to make progress on whatever personal projects that have been cooking in your mind.