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Do You Work To Your Strengths?

Sarah Hawk

We are currently being hit by what our meteorological guys love to refer to as a ‘weather bomb’. In most parts of the world you’d probably just call it a storm, but it’s fairly temperate here so they like to dramatise anything that is slightly out of the ordinary. This particular weather bomb makes it impossible to get outside with my 18 month old twins, so we’re working on expanding our repertoire indoor activities. Yesterday I decided that I was going to make play dough. Housewives have been making it for decades. How hard could it be? Too hard for me, apparently. After using all the salt in the house to produce a sort of boiling red slime, I decided to make a trip to the toy shop in the morning. Some people are paid to do the things that I can’t.

It was for that very reason that when our washing machine blew up over the weekend, I decided that I wouldn’t attempt to fix it myself. As a result I am still married.

It is this subject of working (or playing) to your strengths that I want to talk about.

Our front page poll asks what factors your web job primarily involves. Are you involved in graphic design, front or back end coding, or are you expected to do the lot? Right now, the results demonstrate that almost half (49%) of us are expected to do everything across the spectrum. As the number of available jobs has dropped recently, the number of people going down the freelancing road has sharply increased. It is a good option for many, but does it mean you have to compromise on the standard of the sites that you produce?

One of the things that I love about the SitePoint forums is that it opens doors. Someone that has never used WordPress before can come to the forums and ask a beginners question… and get answers. If you need help with some code you can get it. If you need to know where to find graphics tutorials you can just ask.

So make sure that you make the most of this amazing resource. If you’ve been lurking for a while, why not make today the day that you sign up? I know you’ve all heard it before, but the only stupid question is the one that doesn’t get asked. We don’t mind repeating ourselves, that’s the nature of a forum. All we ask is that you do a search first – someone may have stumbled in exactly the same place as you before. And check the sticky threads at the top of each forum – they contain a wealth of information and more likely than not will answer any beginner question.

SitePoint forums

While you’re at it, check out the week 3 winners of our Golden Post Prize Program. There is just one week left to go, so if you want to pick up a free copy of your favourite SitePoint book, you’d better start working on it.

When Golden Posts wraps up, I’ll be launching a new contest. If you thought I was excited this month, hang onto your hats! In June I’m going to whip up a real frenzy. But for now I’m going to leave it at that.

On the subject of frenzies, we’ve been on a bit of a tweeting buzz lately. Twitter is an amazing tool but it’s one that can be very easily abused. So I put it to you straight. Are we over-tweeting?

Hot Topics This Week
There is an interesting conversation going on over in Business and Legal Issues this week. They are discussing time breakdown and business management. How much time do you spend working IN your business and how much time do you spend working ON it?

In the Content Writing forum they are discussing new sites and what to put in an opening post. It has been decided what NOT to write, do you have an opinion? Let us know what you’d put in your opening post.

They’re talking uncluttered layouts for content heavy pages over in Just Starting Your Design. Have you got any tips?

Cha-Ching! Money Talks…but can you ask for it? The title says it all! Join this interesting thread in the General Chat forum this week.

This week there have been a couple of threads about open source software and how you use it. How do you define open source and if you do decide to go with an open source solution, do you inform your clients?

Enough from me for the week… I’m sure you have work to get on with. Ciao.

Feature image by Chris Roberts from Digital Precision