Over the years I have worked on many projects, with some successful and a great benefit to the company, and some total failures with me getting fired or otherwise leaving. What is the difference? Naturally I prefer the former and wish to avoid the latter, so I'm pondering this issue.
The key seems to be that my personal approach differs from the norm. I write code first, letting it be all spaghetti and chaos, using whatever tools "fit my hand" that I'm fluent in. I try to organize it, then give up and start over with a better design. I go through cycles, from thinking-design to coding-testing.
This may seem to be the same as any other development process, Agile or whatever, cycling between design and coding, but there does seem to be a subtle difference: The methods (ideally) followed by most teams goes design, code; design, code; ... while I'm going code, design; code, design; (if that makes any sense.)
Music analogy: some types of music have a strong downbeat while others have prominent syncopation.
In practice, I just can't think in terms of UML, specifications and so on, but grok things only by attempting to code and debug and refactor ad-hoc. I need the grounding provided by coding in order to think constructively, then to offer any opinions, advice or solutions to the team and get real work done.
In positions where I can initially hack up cowboy code without constraints of tool or language choices, I easily gain a "feel" for the data, requirements etc and eventually do good work. In formalized positions where paperwork and pure "design" comes first and only later any coding (even for small proof-of-concept projects), I am lost at sea and drown.
Therefore, I'd like to know how to either 1) change my rhythm to match the more formalized methodology-oriented team ways of doing things, or 2) find positions at organizations where my sense of development rhythm is perfect for the work.
It's probably unrealistic for a person to change their fundamental approach to things. So option 2) is preferred.
So where I can I find such positions? How common is my approach and where is it seen as viable but different, and not dismissed as undisciplined or cowboy coder ways?