This week, I published Doug Arcuri's #DevJourney story on my eponym Podcast: Software developer's Journey. Among many other things, here are my main personal takeaways:

  • Doug started learning C++ to modify the Half-Life video game. He tinkered his way into learning C++ so to say. The modding followed him for many years and helped him forge his way to university.
  • In his first job, Doug had a lot of fun creating software at the fringe between software and hardware. Being able to see and feel the product he helped design was a source of pride and joy.
  • Doug's ability to learn quickly helped him progress through his career. He was asked on multiple occasions to research a new field and thus moved from WebDevelopment to iOS, then iOS to Android, and then from Developer to a more managerial job.
  • Doug spend a long time in media companies. He advises to dig deep and learn the domain of the field you are working in.
  • Even if you work remotely, don't forget human contact. Bring the team together once in a while, specially at the end of a project, during the "crunch phase".
  • Doug was a manager when his team had to chose between sticking to Java or going to Kotlin (before it was officially endorsed by Google). I love how he presented the discussion with both sides of the equation: technical excellence and fun on one side, but also hiring-, learning- and productivity-issues on the other side.
  • Learning from others and teaching to others, became one of his core values. Feedback is a gift that everyone should cherish. And this includes applying for jobs. Every interview is an opportunity to grow.
  • Doug encourages new managers, to pick a narly problem that will take them through the whole organization. For Doug it was procuring Fussball tables for a team. Somehow, it was an outstanding problem that took him many months to solve, but which helped him understand how to navigate the organization. I love the idea!
  • At some point, Doug used his blogging to communicate in a subtle way with his teams :D
  • As a recruiter, Doug encourages us to look for passion, energy and motivation. Then, take chances on people, and finally, praise the small things.


  • Ask for more feedback, feedback is a gift!


  • "Even if your company goes belly up, no-one can take the learnings from you!"
  • "Take every opportunity to learn what others are building"

Thanks Doug for sharing your story with us!

You can find the full episode and the shownotes on

Did you listen to his story?

  • What did you learn?
  • What are your personal takeaways?
  • What did you find particularly interesting?