John Sonmez is a software developer and the author of two best-selling books, The Complete Software Developer's Career Guide and Soft Skills: The Software Developer's Life Manual.
He's also the founder of the Simple Programmer blog and YouTube channel, where he reaches 1.4 million software developers yearly with a central message:
Technical skills alone aren't enough for a successful career—or life.
By focusing on "soft skills" like the ability to communicate clearly and lead by example, the mental resilience to bounce back from failure and even an improved level of personal fitness, software developers can break through the "glass ceiling" and enjoy extraordinary success.
John learned these lessons himself the hard way—through trial and error over his 17+ year career as a developer—and he's candid about the fits and starts he struggled through during those early years.
John started his software development career at age 10, hacking C and C++ to create virtual worlds for his favorite MUDs.
When John landed a coveted six-figure Silicon Beach job at age 19, he thought his career was set.
In reality he was only set up for years of frustration and disappointment—from getting "laid off" from that cushy job after underwhelming his boss with his C++ skills, to a spectacular implosion during an intense onsite interview with Microsoft, to finally taking a job outside of programming just to pay the bills.
Eventually though John realized that there's a huge difference between knowing how to program and having all the skills to be a successful, professional software developer—and he set out to develop the technical, leadership and communication skills he lacked.
John went on to become a highly paid consultant in test automation and Agile methodology, and the 55 courses he published with the technical education powerhouse PluralSight makes him one of the most prolific online trainers in the field of software development.
John effectively retired at 32 and moved to San Diego.
Today he focuses his energy on helping other developers achieve the success they desire through the videos, books and courses in his Simple Programmer platform.