Inspired by the great Jessica Chan’s post on Instagram. What are the non-tech skills you need to cultivate to go from good to great in web development? 4 of hers, three of mine.
8 things to look at and rework if you’ve been applying for developer jobs and can’t get hired.
This Reddit thread blew up over the weekend with lots of devs feeling the same way. Is that you? If so, here’s advice from the community and my own thoughts and how to deal with feeling burnt out and overwhelmed.
Just uploaded a new episode of the podcast. Here’s the breakdown: Ever getting overwhelmed with how fast things change in web development and the constant learning you have to do to keep up? Heard the horror stories of developers getting burned out and scared it’s gonna happen to you? In this episode, I’m going to show you how to develop a habit of lifetime learning, the strategies I use for learning new things quickly and painlessly and how to develop and maintain stamina when learning AND in your career. Give it a listen here: https://www.johnmorrisshow.com/jms394-how-to-develop-a-habit-of-lifetime-learning-without-getting-burned-out/
Just uploaded a new episode of the podcast. Here’s the breakdown: Changing (or thinking about changing) your career to development, but uncertain because you’re a bit older? Not sure how you to make the switch and still pay the bills? Unsure if you can even make it as a developer. In this episode, I’ll show you how I made the switch later in life — what you need to know skill-wise, how to build a resume, how to get interviews and how develop plan to manage your switch. Give it a listen here: https://www.johnmorrisshow.com/jms393-how-to-change-your-career-to-development-later-in-life/
Just uploaded a new episode of the podcast. Here’s the breakdown: The future of web development is clear. You can choose one of 3 paths. And, if you’re not on the right one, FOR YOU, it’s going to be increasingly difficult to succeed. Fortunately, it’s all about self-awareness and is 100% within your control. It just comes down to knowing those 3 paths and which one is best suited to YOU. I’ll tell you how to figure that out in this episode. Give it a listen here: https://www.johnmorrisshow.com/jms390-the-future-of-web-development/
I once did this YouTube video. It was called the “Exact PHP Skills You Need to Learn to Get Paid to Code.” The idea was there’s all these things you think you need to learn or you get told by some ranting know-it-all that you need to learn… But, in reality… You only use a small fraction of those skills on a regular basis. So, I made a list of the things you’ll use most often as a PHP developer. The things that make up 90% of the coding I do. Variables, arrays, loops… That sort of thing. It’s been
When it comes to freelance marketing, this is the most important thing I can teach you. It’s not sexy or flashy. In fact, it’s a lot of hard work. But, it’s the one thing I know I can rely on year after year, no matter the scenario. And since I started doing it, my business has grown over 500%. So, take it for what it’s worth to you.
I was watching this YouTube video the other day. Guy was a home-builder and he was talking about siding… some of the stuff he does to insulate and protect homes. And, when you look at his stuff, the finished product, it’s obvious… guy knows what he’s doing. The homes look amazing. The videos are really good. He has several hundred thousand subscribers. It all seemed amazing. And then, you check the comments… What a horror show. 300 response threads of people arguing over what he said at 5:18. Or, one-liners like “Idiot”. Several hundred comments and there were maybe a
One of Stephen Covey’s “7 Habits of Effective People” is: “Begin with the end in mind.” When you do, what you need to do now becomes much more clear. It’s the same with your web development career. A lot of people ask me what languages they should learn and what order they should learn them in. The real answer is: I don’t know. That depends on your end. Here’s what I mean. If you want to work at Google, for example, Golang might be something you wanted to learn since it’s developed by Google. If you want to work at
I took my dog to the vet to get spayed the other day. The week prior when I called, I got a masterclass in selling your services. As I explained what I needed, one of the first things they asked me was, “Is it a stray?” Our dog, Marley, is. A neighbor rescued her, but wasn’t able to take care of her, so we took her from him. Because of that, the animal clinic gave us 40 bucks off. That’s lesson #1. The hook. When I called I was just gathering information. I was going to call a couple clinics
Another common question I get, this time from Gary: “Sir, I’m a self taught web developer with no job experience. My question about freelancing is how to price a website? For example do I need to let the client pay for the hosting website and etc.” Perceived quality. Note the emphasis on perceived. Here’s the analogy I use. Imagine you need to get a medical procedure done. So, you go to the nearest clinic. As you pull up, you notice the clinic is in a sketchy part of town. The parking lot is cracked and littered with trash. The clinic’s
Two terms you’ll want to write down for today. First one: Skill-Stacking. You know this, but probably haven’t thought of it this way. A lot of developers ask me what they should learn. The real answer: ALL of it. The more skills you stack in your arsenal, the more valuable you’ll be to employers. And, more importantly, the more adaptable you’ll be when [email protected]# changes. And, [email protected]# changes… a lot. You shouldn’t be stingy about what you learn in the beginning. Learn it all. Stack, stack, stack. Second term: Credibility-Stacking. This one I don’t think near as many people think
What makes a developer truly a developer? I’ll give you my answer in a second. But think about that as you read this… So, I got this email question from Mike: “I’m stuck at a beginner level. I’ve followed tons of tutorials and did a 3 month full time web dev boot camp. But I cant seem to get past the hurdle of being able to write a program myself. I consistently fail interview tests as my programming logic skills are low. I seem to be stuck at this beginner level. I need to learn how to think like a
That’s the headline. Of the most effective services sales page I ever ran. In fact, I ran it for years on my site before I whittled down to just one client. It’s easily brought in tens of 1000s of the greenbacks for me. I don’t care what kind of web development you do… This should be your headline. It grabs the reader by the eyeballs… And, forces them to read. Because, it’s every client’s worst nightmare. It’s like a car wreck, they can’t NOT look. And, it works no matter what kind of services you offer. Of course, you gotta
Do you know about the Global Game Jam? It’s a challenge/event to create games in one weekend in hundreds of locations worldwide. Anyway, chat about that and how to stay laser-focused in a world full of distractions and chaos. Specifically, that focus is NOT about discipline or will power and the 3 things you need to do to stay focused no matter what’s happening around you.
Back when little JMO was just a freelancing tadpole… I made the mistake virtually every new freelancer does. That makes freelancing 10X harder than it has to be. Awful clients. Projects you hate. Getting paid pennies. It’s easy to see why so many people give up on it. My mistake was taking any and every client I could. I built a weird e-commerce app for a guy. Jackin’ around with creating PDFs in PHP for another. Hacking WordPress for yet another. I didn’t enjoy any of it. So, I procrastinated HARD. Clients got pissed. I had to refund a couple,
The offer is crucial. You can do everything else right, as a freelancer, but if you screw up the offer, you’ll have a miserable time getting clients because they simply don’t want what you have. This is why I rag on the “generalist” web developer approach so much. Most FREELANCE clients don’t want that. If they did, they’d hire an employee. They want a specialist to build them XYZ thing. That change in offer, alone, has helped 100s of freelancers I’ve taught. Here’s a perfect example. After I built Platform University for Michael Hyatt, I started to get a bunch of
I was reading this Instagram post from @martin_lasek. (I definitely recommend following him, BTW.) And, his advice was to let family be your first client to help you get comfortable working with clients. And, one thing he said jumped out at me: “Believe me the fact it‘s family doesn‘t make them an easier client it just makes it easier for you to enter the field of project management, delivering and actually finishing it.” Man! Is that so true? And, I’ve been back and forth on this. Family CAN be a great first client. And, it can help give you that
Do easy things WHEN they’re easy. I’ve always been the “I’ll figure it out” type. It drives my wife nuts. She’s more of a planner. She likes to know how, when, where… Every little detail. Me? I usually just wing it. I think a lot of developers are this way. Goes back to the “smart” thing. You KNOW you will figure whatever it is out. BECAUSE, you’re smart. So, meh… Of course, I’ve had plenty of moments in my career that have slowly cured me of this. The project for Michael Hyatt was a big one. I was just gonna
I’ve always been smarter than most of the people I know. It might sound arrogant, but it’s just something I’ve always known. I was constantly told how smart I was growing up. All the things I’d do with my life because I was smart. How “easy” I’d have it. After a while, I started to believe it. And, I began to believe that “being smart” meant I was destined to be successful. That, one day, it’d just happen. By 28, it hadn’t happened. And, I remember I would sit there and stew over it. “How can all these dumb people
Just read this tweet from Ed Latimore (former heavyweight boxer): Groan at that if you want, but it’s true. For me, one of the major turning points in my life and career is when I stopped seeking out friends and instead sought “allies”. An ally of mine, Michael Skye, taught me this. And, it can be life-changing. A friend is someone who comforts and consoles you. They excuse and justify your shortcomings for you. They’re rationalize your failures. They’re good to have in your life. You need that, sometimes. But, if that’s ALL you have. You have no one to
I got this question on a video of mine: “So how do you get the to pay for your larger fee vs the guy who will do it for 300.” I get this a lot. The “low-baller” problem. So, what I wanna share with you, today, is a dead simple way for not only dealing with low-ballers, but also be able to raise your freelances fees at will… and, not have clients think twice about it. And, it starts with a simple change in how you think about. Why do people buy a Rolex watch when a Timex tells time
For real. Think about it. When you lay your head down at night and think about all the things you want for your life right before you doze off… yeah… you dream about PHP 8 I’m sure. You see yourself chained to a desk, typing code… THAT’S what you really want outta life. Uh-huh. Or, Thanksgiving. When you’re sitting around the table with your family, big spread of food you’re about to rip into and you’re telling everyone what you’re thankful for… I’m sure it’s “Well, I’m thankful for CSS transitions, React… definitely react… Node…” No! Of course, you aren’t.
Spaketh the troll: “The only thing laughable here is this smug, horrible take. That’s what cracks me up. Gutenberg is a clunky, horrible mess. I can see how the childish building block approach might appeal to an arrogant prick like yourself who believes that every sentence deserves a new line, but to real content creators who actually know how to write, it’s a nightmare. An actual blog, an actual article…something you clearly know nothing about, since you’re committed to this self-congratulatory “I’m smarter than everyone else” drivel you laughably call a blog. I’m sure you’ll offer up some snarky reply
There’s lots of reasons: You’re just not that good at what you do. You’re not very good at dealing with people. You picked the wrong market and services to offer. I could go on and on. But, by far, the #1 reason freelancers fail is they never learn how to consistently get clients. They rely on luck or “word of mouth”. They try this and that, but never learn and apply anything consistently. They constantly worry that one day the clients will dry up. And, if that does happen… They have no idea how to fix it. That was me
Fair warning if you’ve never been told. It’s important to never get too close to your clients. It’s a recipe for certain disaster. Something I learned the hard way… I had this client once I really liked. When we started, she was super laid back and easy to work with. She wasn’t trying to re-invent the wheel. And, she was actually willing to listen to me and my thoughts on her site. And, I felt like she really liked me, too. She always was pleasant when we talked. Always said nice things. Even as we worked through a stickier issue
That’d be the conventional wisdom. I only have my H.S. diploma. No college degree. Certainly no fancy-pants Master’s or doctorate. I’m just a lowly web developer building “boring” web sites for equally boring and uneducated people. To hear the know-it-alls tell it, anyway. But, as I sit here… On the land I own free and clear… Looking at the house I’m building (and own free and clear)… Pondering all the student loan debt I DON’T have… I can’t help but think: “This moron has done pretty damn well for himself.” Some might call that arrogant. Other (smarter) people might see
Once upon a week ago, I got a YouTube comment from a student of mine: “Really? I made 35k on Upwork in the last 12 months. Seems like a good scam to me :)” This was in response to the typical loser-screech of the Upwork haters that come out of the woodwork every time I do an Upwork video… calling Upwork a scam or whatever the excuse-word of the day is. Then, some dingbat responds to her with this doosie: “35k on Upwork? That’s because you’re a woman, you’re privileged and people pay you more.” Lol. The excuse-gerbil is spinning
“You don’t need college degree to be a web developer because people with advance college degree create libraries so that people without college degree can get a job.” That’s the comment I just got on YouTube. ???? Yeah. Sooo… let’s tear this guy a new… ahem… I mean, here are my thoughts: Later, John
I don’t hear many developers talk about #4 here. But, it’s so critical. If you start your web development career by picking a language, you’re making it much harder on yourself. And, that’s what #4 in this video addresses: In any case, if you wanna know how to methodically become a full stack web developer, give it a watch. It’s my recommended path to make a lot fewer mis-steps and get there faster. Later, John
It’s 100% possible. In fact, I think degrees are mostly worthless for WEB developers. But, there are three things colleges normally figure out for or dictate to you… that you’ll need to figure out on your own. Otherwise, you’ll wind up wasting a bunch of time and muney learning things you don’t need to. Or, in ways that don’t suit you. Anyway, I reveal those three things here: Watch, like, share. Later, John
Begin with the end in mind. After almost 15 years of doing this web development thing, if there were one thing I could go back and tell young Johnny, it’d be to think a helluva lot more about where I wanted to go with all this. The answers wouldn’t have been perfect. They’d evolve over time. But, I’d have felt lost a lot less. I’d have been more motivated. And, I’d have wasted a lot less time. In any case, if you’re smart you’ll learn from my mistakes. This new video has the big ones and the things you need
I learned this when my brother got into insurance. It was all but required for any new insurance agent and the primary way they went about drumming up those first few clients and building the network they’d use to reliably get clients the rest of their career. Going around with him… I quickly learned how hot a commodity I was as a web developer. And, had people asking me to build them websites from day one. It was easy to see why every insurance agent did this. Anyway, that’s #4 of the 5 tips I reveal in my latest video
I’ve been a developer for over 14 years. And, I’ve worked with developers from all over the world. And, when people ask me “What does it take to be a PRO developer?”… I’ve noticed there are three tell-tale signs. Things you’ll see pro developers that others simply don’t or can’t. And, if you can do these things… You can pretty much write your own check as a developer. Anyway, just uploaded a new video on it here: If you want to take that next step, give it a watch. And, I’d appreciate if you’d share it with any other developers
This just can get confusing as hell, sometimes. I kinda just shake my head at the “Intro to OOP” tutorials that spend the whole time talking about “polymorphism” and “encapsulation”. It’s no wonder a lot of developers hold out learning OOP. Anyway, the most important… Most fundamental… Object-oriented programming principle is much, much simpler. And, I think a big “aha” for developers. Of course, that’s probably just my naive “don’t confused the hell out of people on day 1” opinion, but who knows. Anyway, if you’ve been wanting to tackle OOP in PHP, but been afraid it’s complicated as hell…
Man! I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my freelance career. But, each time, I always learned something important that helped me be successful later on. But, these three. These three mistakes were the biggest lessons I learned in 14+ years of freelancing. So, I made this video to just tell you what they are and what to do to avoid them. Give it a watch here: And, I’d appreciate if you’d share it with any freelancers you know. Later, John
It took my five years to learn PHP. It was my first language and I made a bunch of mistakes. Later, when I decided to learn jQuery, I fixed those mistakes and learned it in about 30 days. In this video, I reveal what I learned: If you wanna learn how to code as fast as you possibly can, give it a watch. I’d appreciate if you’d share it with any developers you know, as well. Later, John
New video just posted for you. In this one… a lot of developers wanna hit that 100K range, but don’t have a plan for how to do it. THIS is how you build that plan to make sure you’re grinding in the right direction. Give it a watch: And, I’d appreciate if you’d share it with any developers you know. Later, John
I got this from Mikhail: Another example of how simple this can be. Your job is to grind. Mine is to point you in the right direction. In any case, I’ll keep it short, today. If you wanna become another success story like this… yes, of course, I truly believe in my courses and the fact that they’ll help you get there… and faster. BUUUUT… Don’t do what 90% do. Don’t join up and then do nothing. GRIIIIIIND! Hit it hard. Squeeze very last drop out of it. THAT is how you win. Anyway, if you want to know what
This is that turning point I keep bringing up: You get a little taste of success. But, really don’t know how. Then, all of sudden, it stops. And, all the fears… all the doubts and insecurities, all the “why me” and “can’t ONE thing just [email protected]#ing work!?”… the nightmares about being stuck in a 9 to 5 forever, all the people saying, “I told you so”. You bounce from depressed to pissed to confused… This is the moment you decide to get serious… Or, walk away. THIS is what I mean by building a real business around your freelancing services. KNOWING
1000 things you could do here… But, let me tell you what I actually did. First… my first several clients all hired me because they’d seen some YouTube videos I did that were pretty close to what they wanted. At the time, I didn’t have a portfolio up, testimonials or even a page selling my services. They just found my email and emailed me. This is why I constantly beat the “create content” drum. It can work when you have nothing else. Second… all the projects I worked on were small. Fix a CSS bug here. Write a little PHP
The #1 question I get from people who WANT to get into freelancing. But, it’s interesting because 63% of people who DO freelance believe that a diversified portfolio of clients is MORE stable than a single employer. To me, it comes down to HOW you do it. So, I decided to do a video and explain that. If you’ve thought about getting into freelancing, but have been worried about the income stability, THIS is the video you should watch: Later, John
There’s a moment in every Freelancer’s career. You’ve got a few clients… Things seem to be going well. But, you’re not really sure how it all happened. You’re not making quite enough to feel comfortable. And, you can’t help but worry, constantly, about what happens if you lose one of our clients… and can’t get another. It’s a turning point. Figure it out and you go onto a successful freelance career. Don’t and you get stuck… unable to grow. Eventually, most give up. For me, it was “the hockey guy”. A hockey training membership site I’d built for a guy.
This is a really good question from Jeenie: Two things: First… and, I know, I know… “that’s what you ALWAYS say”. That’s because it’s true. It goes back to selling on value. The value you offer to a client should be MORE than time saved. The expertise you bring to the table. The quality of work. The reassurance it’s being done right. A whole host of “value-added” benefits beyond time saved. So, sure… Maybe, her client could do it themselves in 15 minutes. But, will it be done right? Will it be done to the same level of quality? Will
The simple secrets to high-paying freelance clients
What makes clients willing to pay $5,000, $10,000 even $20,000 and up for your services? Download and install my mobile app and I’ll show you. It’s free. Just click the button below:
WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING
John and I have worked together on numerous projects. John is very quick and efficient and was a pleasure to work with.
John has a particular knack for the development and training of others.
John has provided expert knowledge and advice on multiple occasions that have helped me better serve my clients. John is a Rockstar!
On the Freelancing on Upwork course: “This is by far the best course i have watched on Skillshare!! Thank you so much.”
John really delivers!
Not only is John a very talented programmer and developer, he is also an excellent communicator. He has a talent for taking complex subjects and communicating them in terms that anyone can understand. This is a rare combination. This ability has enabled me to take my skills and knowledge to the next level. Thank you John for for all that you do.
I’m a fan. I have completed several of John’s courses. I find him very knowledgeable and he has a great delivery.
John is amazing at building membership sites. He converted one of my sites over from it’s existing (hardly working) platform over to the clean and simple to use WishList membership platform. I highly recommend using John and WishList for any of your membership site needs.
John is a fantastic and patient tutor, who is not just able to share knowledge and communicate it very effectively – but able to support one in applying it. However, I believe that John has a very rare ability to go further than just imparting knowledge and showing one how to apply it. He is able to innately provoke one’s curiosity when explaining and demonstrating concepts, to the extent that one can explore and unravel their own learning journey. Thanks very much John!
John Morris is exceptional in his ability to give focused insight into Freelancing and starting one’s business. His direct methods inspire confidence in his honesty.
John has a relaxed and engaging manner. His advice is solid and the explanations are well thought out.
John is one of the best instructors I have come across, I learned a lot from his online tutorials.
I recommend John every chance I get. If every person I worked with were as committed to excellence, punctuality, value, and unquestionable integrity… the world would be a better place. Highest recommendation.
John has a habit of over-delivering on the expectations he sets up. That’s why he’s the best.