I believe for any software developer first beginning their career they want to be “Yes Men”. We are so eager that we have what it takes to be a professional we don’t know what the word “no” means. “Can you stay late and complete this? Can you make this all by yourself? Can you do that… etc” We want to belong, we want people to believe in us, we want a paycheck every week. This saying yes all the time must be a stage because once we actually know we belong, we learn our limits. We learn from experience that we need a team to complete something, we need time away from the office to be productive, we need a life outside of work to keep our heads in the game while we’re working.
Chapters 2 and 3 of “The Clean Coder” emphasized these points concisely and effectively. By only saying yes, you agree to add features that cannot be implemented and this in turn shifts focus away from the primary goal. Learn to say no when appropriate and work hard and deliver when you say yes and respect will be earned. I believe Martin said it best when he stated, “Professionals know their limits… Professionals are not required to say yes to everything that is asked of them. However, they should work hard to find creative ways to make ‘yes’ possible.”.