In this interview, we talk to Nader Dabit, Senior Developer Advocate at Amazon Web Services. Follow Nader on Twitter (@dabit3).
How did you get into developer relations?
I contributed to an OSS project at AWS and, through the experience, met the person who ended up setting up a call with my team who ultimately lined up an interview and hired me.
What do you do day-to-day?
A lot of what I do now is communication - Email, social media DMs and messages, email, slack, discord, github issues. At least half of my day is probably just communicating. The rest of the day I'm usually focused on 1 big task a week. Usually some sort of project I'm building, talk I'm giving, blog post I'm writing, or internal doc I'm in charge of. For most projects I usually am building something with code, even for my talks I usually end up with demos or at least needing to build something a few times to understand how I'd like to talk about it.
What skills should developer advocates focus on building before getting the job?
I think that a solid combination of developer experience paired with good communication and people skills is the 1-2 punch that will ultimately lead to success. A drive to genuinely want to help people and an enjoyment of teaching also helps, but at the end of the day it's all about developing relationships and helping people so if that's something you enjoy doing you can probably excel in DevRel.
What developer advocates should people follow online?
Any tips you would give to someone just getting started in the field?
Create and share everything you can and as often as you can. As you grow your network, do everything you can to help those also looking to grow their network by sharing the things and ideas they have and encouraging them. Get out of your comfort zone and try to find your digital "voice".
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