On consistency

Last week, I was at an event discussing how long I’d been running the Hey! Presents events for (10 years as of a few weeks ago), and the person I was talking to asked how I’d stuck with it for so long. Ten years is by no means a lifetime achievement, but it is a considerable amount of time to be running events, which led to my response.

Consistency. Trust your gut that you’re doing something valuable. Accept that not every event will be sold out, without tech issues, or resonate with an audience. Find the lessons in every instance, and push forward.

In every walk of life, consistency breeds quality and value. And I’m not just talking about technology, either. Work in hospitality? Consistent service and quality food help keep a restaurant busy. Training athlete? Consistent training ensures you hit your goals and beat opponents.

And software engineering is no different. Consistency within engineering comes from continuous learning. Working with new and old tools, building that design system a few times to understand the ins and outs (but ideally, not rebuilding it time after time). Consistency in this context means you build on that knowledge and mature yourself as an individual contributor.

I am undoubtedly better at running events than I was ten years ago, and I’ll undoubtedly be even better at it in another ten years. You can never “complete” many things in life, but as long as you enjoy it and derive value from “the thing”, then you must stick with it because the longer you do, the bigger those wins will feel.