Full stack panic is that feeling you get when …

You read a JavaScript newsletter and don’t recognize half of what’s in it.

Or when you keep hearing …

“Nobody uses The Thing You Are an Expert In anymore we’re all using New Hotness over here.”

Or when every job description seems to require a skill you don’t have and the little voice in your head says …

“I should know all of this. Do I even know what I’m doing?”

Why do web developers the world over feel like this? There are a few reasons.

Your job can be a skill dead end

Imagine you started a job as a jQuery developer five years ago, (not that crazy), and over the years your company never changed stacks.

While you were hard at work the industry rapidly changed and your skills became less relevant.

This shouldn’t be a huge problem except…

Hiring is broken

The status quo of hiring practices does a great job of ignoring high value skills like getting up to speed quickly, mentoring, right-sizing a solution, etc. and instead prefers to ask …

“What have you done lately?”

How many job descriptions have you seen with skill requirements so deep and specific that you’d have to be the web developer equivalent of Rey, Yoda and Obi-Wan rolled into one to meet them?

How do you even pick what to learn next?

What should you learn? When should you learn it? There are a bazillion choices and they’ll all go out of fashion with time.

Or worse…

Do you remember when Steve Jobs canceled Flash and sent every Flash developer scrambling to reinvent themselves?

You don’t have to feel Full Stack Panic

Howdy! I’m Sean and I’ve been a web developer professionally for 15 years. I’m the author of Sketching with CSS and I write The Invasion, a newsletter for over 20,000 un-mustachioed developers just like you.

And at one point I was a jQuery developer. Before that I used MooTools. And before that I was a SharePoint developer in a job that was going nowhere. I’ve definitely hit a few “skill dead ends” over the years and it was often a struggle to get unstuck, but I did it and you can too.

This podcast answers the question: how do you build a successful, happy and long-term career when the ground keeps shifting under your feet?

I’ve convinced some awesome web folks to talk about how you can learn to manage your feelings about a crazy rate of change and carve out an awesome career from this place we call the Web.

Here are a few episodes you might find interesting.

Josh Doody is a salary negotiation coach for experienced software developers who are going to big tech companies. Josh explains how to position yourself for high value roles at tech companies, how to negotiate a pay raise where you’re at and strategies for a long term career as a developer.

Dr. Sherry Walling is a psychologist who works with tech entrepreneurs. Find out how a psychologist thinks about working with problems that are outside of your control, like and ever-shifting tech landscape.

Joel Hooks is the co-founder of Egghead.io. He also used to be a Flash developer. One day Steve Jobs wrote a memo and everything he’d put into becoming a world class Flash developer became almost useless overnight. In this episode we discuss how he got past that moment, and much more.

Joel Califa coined the term “Full Stack Anxiety” which was the inspiration for this podcast. We talk about how that came about and how he’s managed “Full Stack Anxiety” in his own career.

Pete Keen is the author of “Mastering Modern Payments” and a senior developer at Stripe. Pete and I talk about how getting a new job has changed as he moved into more senior roles and how his book helped his career.

Origins of Full Stack Panic podcast

A few years back Joel Califa did a talk titled “Full Stack Anxiety”. That talk was the inspiration for this podcast and the obvious inspiration for the name of this podcast. Joel is also featured as a guest on the show. I’m grateful to him for both of these contributions. Thank you Joel.



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