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Carve Your Niche
You've seen the web articles on the Internet: "Coding is the hot new career! You can make upwards of six figures by writing software!"

Yes, you can make six figures in software development. But many of those positions are low-paying positions at entry level: help desk technician, quality assurance tester, release technician. It may not be minimum wage, but it's only a few steps up the ladder.

Even if you do know a programming language or two, it's still not enough. If you have a basic level of programming skill, not only are you competing with thousands of other entry-level programmers, you are also competing with offshore contractors who can quote a much lower pay rate. No matter how hard you work, you're never going to outwork the offshore programmer who's sleeping under his desk during his off shift.

If you want to command a six-figure salary in software, you have to find your specialty. You have to carve out your niche.

Lots of people know how to script in Java. Few people are full-stack developers who know how to build an enterprise application in a service-oriented architecture.

Guess who's getting paid more?

The same thing applies to databases. Thousands of people know SQL. Few people know how to build a data warehouse. Even fewer know how to do it well. (Believe me, I've seen the resumes.)

A good data warehouse developer is in high demand by companies everywhere. At one place I've worked in the Midwest, they flew in a candidate from the West Coast to see if he would be a good fit. (He wasn't.)

If a company is so desperate to fill a position that they would interview someone on the other side of the country, do you think there's a lot of demand for that skill stack?

Learn how you can stand out in this niche. Sign up for my email list.

About the Author: Jonathan Szeto

I have spent over a decade in the field of database development, particularly for business intelligence. By learning how to master data, I turned myself around from the brink of bankruptcy to earning over six figures in business intelligence. Sign up to my email list if you want to learn how to do this for yourself.
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