Everyone needs some technical skill as a foundation on which to build an additional framework of problem-solving skills. If you can’t actually do the work (e.g., write efficient code), then you won’t be able to perform higher-level thinking (e.g., offer solutions with your software product). I have an accounting background as a CPA, but that foundation helps me do much more than write journal entries and file taxes. A valuable CPA helps their clients accomplish their goals by giving them tools to make informed decisions about the operations of their companies.
Therein lies the true skills that our economy considers valuable. Technical skills are needed, but degrees are commodities. People want to know if you can make an impact. Can you develop and apply principles in logical decision making? Can you understand the environment in which the business operates? Can you think out of the box and find creative solutions? Can you inspire others to do their best work? Can you communicate in a way that creates clarity?
Everyone needs to be good at something. But can you build upon your technical skills and develop the philosophical skills this post hits on?
Great post, Greg Satell. Keep up the good work!