Don't Just Practice

[ABAP Spirit]

Do you enjoy listening or reading? My own voice recording below or just scroll down to the text.

When you want to learn to code...what would you do?

Google, right?
And What would you find?

  • “Learn and Practice”
  • “Learn by doing”
  • “Hands-on Approach”

Is your Main Goal just to learn how to code in ABAP?

I doubt so, your goal is to get a job or be promoted.

If that’s the case, please don’t practice.

***Are you kidding me, Tom?***

No, I’m not. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that practicing is bad (frankly it’s very important).
I’m saying that everywhere is practice, practice, practice but there’s missing something.

Let me tell you one story of my friend - Andrej - a piano player.

Back then, when I was his roommate after our University studies, Andrej bought himself a piano. But at that time, Andrej didn’t know how to play on it.

So, he got taking piano lessons. Approximately after 6 months, he started to be a solid piano player.

And Andrej got an invitation to play a concert at one event.

We used to laugh and call that kind of event a Gastro Concert…
… you know, the guy is doing background music while people are chatting and eating delicates from a buffet.   

But for Andrej, it was Carnegie Hall. Fulfilled dream.

He took it really seriously and he started preparing songs from the very first day.

He had 5 weeks to the BIG day.

After two weeks, Andrej prepared everything. Still, 3 weeks to the concert left. But he continued to practice songs to perfection.

The date of the concert came.
After the concert, Andrej came back to our flat and he was devastated.

"I'm quitting with piano"

What has happened?

The host introduced him, he sat in front of the piano and started playing. After a few seconds, he hit the wrong keyboard. It was like when silence interrupts screaming. And he got more nervous, and in the next song, he made another mistake, and then another.

For the last three weeks of preparation, he didn’t do any mistakes. Now 6 in the first 5 minutes.  


Wasn’t he prepared? Not really.
He didn’t underestimate preparation.

But he played on piano only in a practicing mode, not in a performance mode.
And that’s a big difference.

During this week, you should do one mini ABAP course, and then you got the challenge.
(If you didn’t do so, it’s still possible to go through it.)

Don’t get misled.

That’s definitely not the performance.

When you were going through the challenge,...

  • Were you nervous?
  • Were your hands sweating?
  • Was your heartbeat speeding up?

I don’t think so.

Some of you sent me your solution’s code. And that’s closer to performance because you put skin in the game.

But it’s still far from real performance.

Once you get a job, you’ll be part of the bigger team.

Sooner or later, you’ll get in a stressful situation like Ladislav who put down the whole SAP system in one Swiss company (you might’ve remembered this story from his email :).

I hope it’ll be something smaller but still your boss will be looking over your shoulder and you need to fix it. In that kind of situation, you can hit the wrong keyboard.

And you can start doubting yourself, “I’m not a good developer, it’s not for me”.

Don’t listen to that voice.

Be like Andrej - who shook it off and played at another concert. He even changed his preparation. At some point, he plays public rehearsal for the small group of friends.

That’s why we’re doing 1on1 Code Review Sessions. This is just one of the ways how we mimic Real Life Job Experience (others we’ll cover in the next weeks).

With all of that as background, I have one promotion for you:

(I keep my word that I won’t flood you with unwanted emails. I’ll send it to you only if you show your interest).

Techincally, it's not possible to do it here on the website. So, go to your inbox and find this email - Don't Just Practice

And click on: Oh yeah, I'm interested in the ABAP Academy StarterKit! …