Not all developers are the same

As you progress through your career you’ll run into two types of developers at various points in your career. Those who like to investigate new technologies, try to come up with better ways to tackle problems, etc and those who will resist any and all change.

Movers and Shakers

Developers who strive to learn new technology, find better ways to solve problems, and generally try to work at improving things are what are commonly called “Movers and Shakers”. These are the people who instigate change in the industry.

These are people who generally will never accept “things are good enough”, no, we can always be better. Overall these people will always strive to improve things and at the end of the day tend to be successful in doing so. There is some assumed risk in change, but usually the benefit far exceeds the costs. These are also the sort of developers that when projects move into a maintenance mode become bored and start seeking more interesting work.

9 to 5ers

One thing is while a “9 to 5er” implies someone who works strictly the required hours that really isn’t the meaning behind this term. A 9 to 5er is strictly doing what’s expected both in regards to time and effort applied, as well as they strictly do the expected work without much consideration of how to improve or change the process.

Typically these people will learn how to do something and will resist change as much as possible. They like coming into work, they do the thing they’re supposed to do in the same way they’ve always done it, then go home. To them change is disruptive and annoying.

We need both types of developers

As borderline infuriating as it can be when the question of change comes around between these types of developers we do need both types of developers in the industry.

The Movers and Shakers drive the industry into newer and exciting things applying technology in new ways to solve problems. They also improve our working conditions, improve our efficiency, and generally just make everything better, but sometimes their visions are unrealistic or deeply flawed.

The 9 to 5ers act as the “sanity check” that help keep the more flawed and unrealistic ideas from spiraling out of control. They also are the ones who do all the less exciting work that movers and shakers would be miserable doing.


At the end of the day Movers and Shakers advance our industry and technology. The 9 to 5ers keep the industry in good health by keeping everything running smoothly by using the tried and true technology.

We need each other, by all means we’ll butt heads and practically go to war to get what we want, but at the end of the day this fighting it what’s best for everyone. If either party gets way too strong it’ll either be chaos or total stagnation of the industry, either of which would be a tragedy.