Thoughts on running advanced training in developing countries

During the last several months, we ran advanced 2-day Adobe Flex training in New York, Boston, Toronto, and London. The next destinations are Moscow, Russia and Kiev, Ukraine. But this is a different world and I ‘d like to share with you some of my thoughts on the subject.

This is our first attempt to run advanced training in the countries that are mainly considered as the source of the software developers for the USA and Western Europe. You might ask, “What difference does it make? A training is a training. rdquo; Actually there is a big difference for several reasons.

I ‘ve heard from some of the developers that employers in theses countries might not be interested in paying for advanced training classes. Many of them are mainly interested in offering their employees an introductory training whenever the new technology becomes in demand (not to be confused with “becomes popular “, i.e. ROR is popular among developers, but not overly demanded by the enterprises) so they can put their software developers on billing. But if a person is already billable, sending him/her to an advance training would increase marketability of this developer in the domestic market, which may not be exactly what managers of the offshore IT shops want.

US employers understand this too, but they are willing to take this risk realizing that their own firm would benefit from people with advanced skills, who are not immediately start looking for new jobs after attending such training. The mentality is different in countries-outsourcers. A large portion of offshore developers considers software development as a way to make a quick buck rather than a long term career. Hence, sell your skills today as if there may be no tomorrow.

Last year, I was presenting at a large conference for software developers in Bangalore, India. One of my presentation was not technical, but on what does it take to be a professional enterprise software developer.

After this presentation, a guy stopped by asking for a career advice. He “s an experienced programmer but was asking what “s the best way to switch from developing software to project management. I went, 
 “Do you like programming? rdquo;
 “Yes, I really do rdquo;
 “So why do you want to switch? rdquo;
 “I am 35 years old, and when relatives ask me what do I do at work, and since I “m not a manager yet, they think that I “m underachiever rdquo;.

I can “t imagine that in the USA a person would want to become a manager just to please family members and neighbors. After that conversation I started asking other Indian developers if the story of that guy was an exception or the rule? They confirmed, “If there are no people working for you ndash; it “s not considered a successful career rdquo;.

After having lots of communications with developers from Eastern Europe, I see that being a software developer is respected, but still, making a quick buck no matter what is an ultimate goal there.

In the Western countries, it “s normal for individuals to pay for training, which is not the case in the developing countries. They enroll into classes when their employers pay for it. While Moscow is considered one of the most expensive cities in the world, we “ve set priced the training there at 50% of what we “ve charged in London. Different culture.

For us, this Moscow-Kiev training is not a money making project ndash; we “ll be happy to cover expenses. We are mainly interested in getting more connections in that part of the world that, hopefully, may turn into something more tangible. I really hope that people will enroll into our classes, and I “ll have chance to visit Moscow, and Kiev, where I “m originally from.

If you are an employer operating in Eastern Europe and you do run projects that require software developers with advanced Flex skills, consider sending them to one of our master classes in December. The registration links are listed below:



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