Software CodersKids are moving from simply playing digital games to making them, and programs like YouthSpark Camps at the Microsoft Store in Chinook Centre, are the catalysts that are driving today’s up-and-coming generation from consumerism into production. As a small- or medium sized business owner, why do you need to know this? If you are looking for the talent that will improve your company, this is where you will find it. Great coding has nothing to do with seniority; you either know how to make a computer do what you want, or you don’t.

The Next Big Innovation

David Karp, founder of Tumblr, is 29 years old. TODAY. But when he actually finished the code for the site, he was 20. He sold the company to Yahoo for $1.1 billion in 2013. Mark Zuckerberg famously created Facebook in his undergraduate Harvard dorm room. Markus Persson, creator of the billion-dollar virtual world Minecraft, is the old man in the billion dollar coding club at 36 — he was 30 when Minecraft first hit. These are the heroes of today’s kids who seem to be in a race to create the next billion dollar app at an earlier age. What age group do you expect will create your next innovation?

Coders Are Literally Intellectual Athletes

In the world of tech, many coders hit their prime at the same age as a professional athlete, which means that you should probably rework your recruiting strategy to resemble a champion college coach. You can find scouts from Alabama, Notre Dame and other top NCAA programs checking out junior high football and basketball practices. Their investment pays back in spades when they achieve tentative promises from parents and students to give their school a first look. If you are on the shortlist for the next generation of coders, then you may not have to start from square one with the talent after it proves itself, and the price of the stock goes up.

Staying Ahead of the Curve

Staying ahead of the tech curve means more than leaving the first comment on the latest article featuring the next Google Penguin update. Keeping your company on the cutting edge of tech means finding the talent that is creating these innovations before anyone. This is especially important for you if you do not have the name recognition or the budget of a company in Silicon Valley. If you are having trouble finding the right talent for your next project, start thinking ahead. Supporting programs like the YouthSpark coding camp means that you have the first look at the new talent that will create innovations for someone in the future. Will you profit from this talent? One thing is for sure — if you do not know that these people even exist, then you definitely will not.

Getting Involved

Why not run a YouthSpark coding camp using the non-profit arm of your organization? If you are the entity teaching kids to code Flatverse, start their own business and develop new Minecraft assets, then whom do you think that person will think of when it is time for gainful employment? Take the time to create new opportunities for the next generation, and they will pay you back with new innovations in the future.

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