Becoming a Developer Advocate

A friend reached out to me on Facebook a few days ago and asked me how he could become a Developer Advocate.

Here goes my response. Maybe I start with a story to bring some points home.

Who is a Developer Advocate?

In my view, a Developer Advocate is someone who “preaches” or enables the “preaching” of technology in one way or another.

The Story

I first had official contact with Microsoft in 2012 when my team registered for the Microsoft Imagine Cup Competition and we had the Microsoft Open Conference in my school – the Federal University of Technology, Akure.

I met Shina – who would then become my first boss and mentor. My first impression of him – I want to be like this man. Because I loved the way he “preached” Microsoft Dev Tech. He was the Developer Platforms Evangelism (DPE) Lead for Nigeria and WECA at that time. I followed Microsoft Tech like a faithful disciple from then – installing Windows 8 Consumer Preview and bugging Shina many nights when I had questions and issues with the OS. He would kindly answer all my questions and give me tips. I then ensured I would help others with any issues.

I remember Eva – my internship partner whose role wasn’t as technical as mine, he would ensure that all my speaking engagements were set, plan the events and execute – I would come in to give the tech talks and demos. We both reported directly to Kendra who was a mix of both before we joined Microsoft. Shina was a mix of us all – he clears the pathway, ensures we have the budget needed to execute, guides and “protect”.

My 2 Cents

To be honest, I’m not sure there are hard and fast rules or guides to becoming a Developer Advocate or Technology Evangelist. So, I’ll give a few pointers I can muster (while taking some points from those who are way ahead of me in this line of impact).

How to Start?

What’s that idea you have of helping other developers?

Are there times you would feel you’re making no impact? Yes. But as my friend Sam would say – we move. We don’t stop. If it’s just one life we’re able to make better, it’s worth it.

Got anything to chip in, kindly add them in the comments section. Thanks for reading.

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