Who does best in a coding or cybersecurity bootcamp? If you’re wondering about your chances of success in a bootcamp, check out these traits of successful people. Many of them are not bootcamp-specific. If you have had successes in the past, no matter how big or small, there’s a very good chance those same traits will see you through a bootcamp.
HAVE THE DESIRE
First, you’ve got to want it. Truly wanting something is a strong motivator to kick yourself into high gear and take the necessary steps toward finishing the task, which in this case is successfully completing a bootcamp. The drive from really wanting something brings you energy and determination. Bootcamp isn’t easy, but if something is making you uncomfortable in your life, neither is staying stuck where you are. Earning a coveted spot as a developer or cybersecurity analyst at any company is well within reach and will be satisfying and rewarding, but it does require effort on your part. You will need to muster all your success tools to carry you forward over the finish line. If you truly want it, you’re off to a very good start.
BE ABLE TO SET A GOAL
Speaking of the finish line, a goal is another thing that successful bootcamp grads have their eye on. The “why” of wanting something cements the dream into reality. Just meandering through a course with nothing in mind may be an entertaining way to pass the time but if something distracting catches your eye during your time in bootcamp (SQUIRREL!) you may fall behind, and that diminishes your chances of getting where you want to be. However, if you have a firm goal — education that won’t take years, salary increase, or a career change — you’ve got a solid foundation from which to start. You can even think about what those things will bring you as your goal: buying a house, more time with your family, not being stuck in a car driving two hours each day. A goal is what lights you up and makes you say “yes, I want that!” Someone who can keep their eye on the goal is likely to succeed.
(Psst! Looking for inspiration? Eleven Fifty Academy grads are uniquely qualified for well-paid tech tracks and hiring programs with Fortune 200 companies like Eli Lilly, JP Morgan Chase, and Salesforce. Does working for a company like that speak to you?)
BE AN INDEPENDENT SELF-STARTER
The most successful people are those that don’t require outside prodding to get a move on. With desire within and a goal in mind, it should be easy to get started on the bootcamp journey; your excitement will propel you forward. That old saying about a journey of a thousand miles starting with a single step holds true today. If you can put that first foot forward, you are on your way to success.
BE ABLE TO WORK IN A GROUP
“Wait, what? Didn’t you just say be an independent self-starter?”
Yes, getting yourself to be present and working on your own work is an important part of success, but if you join in with like-minded people who share your enthusiasm and goals, it makes the road to success a whole lot smoother. If you are stuck on something, another classmate may have the answer. If someone else is stuck, you may have solved that yesterday. Sharing solutions helps everyone learn more and learn faster, as well as enhancing collaboration and leadership skills, which are both foundations for success.
Attending bootcamp rarely occurs in a vacuum. You have other life obligations that demand some of those 24 hours you get in a day. You’ll need to be able to prioritize things and make the most of the time you have. Being able to pay full attention during a lecture, demonstration, or group-work time will allow you to accomplish more in the scheduled time. Don’t even think of giving up food and sleep time—your brain needs both of those to function well, and you want to keep it happy when you’re asking it to learn new skills.
You also need to schedule time outside of class in order to finish assignments, study hard, and practice, practice, practice! Like anything else, the more you do it, the better you become.
COMMUNICATE YOUR NEEDS
Having supportive people around you who can pick up some of the daily workload will also allow you more time to concentrate on your studies. Being able to communicate with those around you what you need, such as minimal distractions, the computer, extra time to work after class has ended for the day, will help you organize your day and make the most of your time spent learning your new skills. Bootcamp may not only be a new experience for you, but also those you live with.
Making a list of things that can be done later, after your time in bootcamp, will help you get a clearer picture of what really needs to be done and what can wait.
HAVE SOME EXPOSURE TO THE SKILLS BEING TAUGHT
While not a necessity, some familiarity with coding will help you immensely in the tight timeframe of a bootcamp. Other problem-solving experiences will also lend themselves to helping you learn these new skills. Coming from school and wanting to expand your knowledge? You’ve already got the study-and- learn mindset.
Don’t worry if you have no experience! You can still succeed in bootcamp by following the other suggestions, but if you already know a little bit about a subject, learning more comes easier, which makes the path to success a little easier. Learning about cybersecurity or coding is the same and you can get started with one of our free courses on either subject.
All these traits tie into the number one must-have: discipline. No one is going to knock on your door and drag you off to bootcamp. You are responsible for attending daily, paying attention, doing the work, and asking questions when you don’t understand something. If it doesn’t work the first time, learn from what went wrong and try it again. Tenacity goes hand in hand with discipline. Keep at it!
Not everyone will be starting bootcamp from the same place, but if you choose wisely, the instructors and other team members will not let you fall behind. Even the most skilled and disciplined person can use a boost now and then. If you choose a bootcamp staffed with people that genuinely care about you, such as at Eleven Fifty Academy, you’ll find help available to keep you on your path to success both in class and beyond.
Your best chance of succeeding in bootcamp? Start!