The S.T.U.P.I.D. Email – Sep 19, 2021

By Bruno Souza | book

Sep 19

Skill, Thought, Unique, Person, Interesting, Daring
A fun, weekly round of Career ideas!


I planned to insist in speaking as the best career skill that developers love to ignore…

But, I participated in a great event today, one that was not the traditional stream of
talk talk talk talk
(oh boy, how tiring it is to watch so many talks…)
talk talk talk…

You see, when we learn a new tool…
or a new skill
(using a hammer…)
Everything around us seems to need it…
(nails, nails, I see nails everywhere…)

So, when you learn to speak, remember that in fact speaking is NOT the most important.


That’s the really important skill.

You can’t be a good speaker if you don’t listen.

To your team.
To your friends.
To your audience.

The better you listen, the better a speaker you can become.


“My creative technical writing well was completely empty.”
My friend Don posted on Linkedin the other day.

Don is a prolific speaker and blogger.

So, even people that are good at sharing content will have difficult in finding topics.

Is this something you struggle with ?
You are not alone!

You know what is the best way to find topics?


Once you listen, instead of trying to be the one to give the answers, use your experience to help people connect the dots.

So they can trace a path from where they are, to where they want to be.

Most times, people are missing one piece, one step, one dot, to be able to complete the path. If you listen, you can help them fill in that one blank.


I participated in a podcast a few weeks ago.
(It was published this past week.)

That was a unique experience…
I got invited for one thing…
but in the first 2 minutes, the host realized I was the wrong person…

So… Instead of kicking me out of the podcast, Richard was amazing!
He called in his friend Justin, and did a totally different podcast!

I felt very special. I felt unique.

Be there for your team.
Be there for your friends.
Be there for your audience.
Make them feel unique.

When you listen, that’s what happens.

Richard listened to me, realized who I really was,
and changed his plans to make something better.



Give and Take, from Adam Grant, is my go-to book about networking.

He doesn’t have many tips on how to do it.
But he goes deep on why it is important.

Networking can change your life.

What is the most important skill for networking?


So, don’t listen to me.
Listen to Adam Grant, and go listen to people around you!


I wrote my new book “The Little Book of Speaking Talent” by listening to people.

Many many developers ask me how they can improve their careers.

And, as I said in the beginning, speaking is the best career skill that developers love to ignore…

If you don’t like speaking…
If you are shy and afraid to say things…
If you hide on the corner during events and meetings…

Two things:

One: you are like me…
        (yes, I prefer to hide in the corner…)

Two: you are probably an AMAZING listener…

Instead of hiding, go shine your listening super power!

Go use your good listening skill to inspire people to change lives.

Use your listening skills to speak!

(This new book I released last week can help you with that!)


Many years ago, I dared to step out of the corner and started facing my fear of talking with people.

My secret?
Instead of starting to speak, I started asking questions.

People love answering questions they know how to answer.

Go ask questions to people around you.
Listen to their answers.

Use this to help them.

That would be you, daring to start your own journey on speaking!
(And if you are just starting this journey…
My free book “Low Hanging Talks”
can help you do the first step!)

Hope you enjoyed those tips! Let me know what you need to get your career moving!

the “listen instead of speaking”-man.

About the Author

Software developers have a huge impact in the world, and can effectively improve the planet. This is why Bruno Souza is passionate about developer communities and has dedicate his life to help developers worldwide reach their true potential. The "Brazilian JavaMan" is a Java Developer at Summa Technologies, and a Cloud Specialist at ToolsCloud, where he participated in some of the largest Java projects in Brazil. President of SouJava and Director at the Open Source Initiative, Bruno believes Java and Open Source to be the path to career excellency for developers everywhere, and that taking responsibility for delivering software is the mark of great developers.