Developer Spotlight

Filipe Afonso is a Senior Consultant for Liferay International. He’s a member of the Global Services team, which is responsible for Liferay consulting services across Europe. This team provides technical leadership and guidance in the installation, configuration and implementation of Liferay’s Java-based technologies.

Filipe is involved with the planning, designing, building and delivery of innovative and out of the box solutions for their customers. We spoke with him about his start in the field of web development and his advice to someone just starting out as a developer.

Why did you decide to become a web developer?

To be completely honest, it was by chance. I was a young man, recently graduated and looking for work. During my quest for an exciting first job, I found one opportunity to work with e-government web projects. At that time, it felt like a fantastic challenge and a good opportunity to learn cool technologies in an exciting and expanding world, the web development world.

What do you enjoy the most about web development?

There are a lot of things that I really enjoy. But if I had to choose one, it would be the way that you can use technology to reach almost everyone in the world, trying to make their lives a bit better by helping to solve their problems or needs.

What do you find is the most challenging aspect of your job?

In my opinion, the most challenging aspect is to be aware of new technologies and best practices – which change almost every day. You’re part of an exciting and constantly changing environment, but it demands you to be updated and in the loop.

What habits or personal traits do you find are the most helpful for being successful in this field of work?

  • Accountability. This is software, and sometimes it’s hard to measure the impact of it on people’s lives. But it can be huge! It’s important to ensure that we deliver what’s expected and be accountable for it.
  • Aim for perfection. It’s impossible to reach, but it’s important to try to do the best we can in the given time frame.

  • Willingness to learn. Tthe world is changing and you need to stay in the loop.

  • Humility. You will never know everything, but you can always learn something from someone and from every experience.
  • Have a good work/life balance. Don’t forget to have some fun!

What advice would you give to someone just starting out as a web developer to help them be successful?

The best advice I can give is to choose a good company. Those first years of experience are extremely important and will shape you as a professional. You need to be surrounded by amazing and clever people in an environment where values like knowledge sharing and teamwork are cultivated and embraced.

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