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Are you struggling with burnout in your job?
Worried about job security?
Wondering what you should do next?
If you have been working in information technology for a while (like, decades), you may be really good at what you do, but not so excited anymore. Or you might feel unappreciated, and anxious about the future. That's bad but there's something you can do about it.
A simple tweak
As you know, in IT there are often huge problems which are fixed with very simple solutions. That's what I'm suggesting here for your career blues.
You shouldn't need to start your IT career all over, by learning something totally new. If you build on your existing skills, you can:
Bring on the zing!
So, whether you're finding that the zing has gone out of your step, or you're happy enough where you are but want to do something a little more exciting, how about trying something new?
Just a Tweak
As you know, in the IT game, sometimes the most difficult and seemingly impossible problems are solved by something simple. Just a tweak.
So what if you were to approach your work the same way? After all, you've got plenty of experience with
Well, you get the point.
You've got a gazillion skills and with a wealth of experience in the university of hard knocks, you probably could teach those young people a thing or two.
"That's great. But how?"
But how do you go about it? What do you do when you're a specialist that is left on the shelf?
Simple. Just build on your experience and your existing skills, and look for new opportunities.
No, that doesn't necessarily mean leaving your job right now (but it might). The key is to see where you are, do an honest assessment of your skills, and then look for where you can best capitalise on them.
Which brings me to this course. Here's the TV version:
Course Outline for Dummies
Section 1: Where am I?
Section 2: Where am I headed?
Section 3: How do I get there?
Pretty basic, you'd think.
Now, if you've read this far, then it's probably time for me to turn on the --verbose flag and give you a bit more detail.
In this course, you'll learn to answer:
This course is in video format and even if you end up sitting at the same old desk at the end of it, at least you'll be able to say you've chosen that because it's where you want to be. And you'll have a little bit more zing when that wretched alarm goes off in the morning.
Why Should I Waste 71 minutes of My Life on This Course?
Good question. Let me say shout it in two words: JOB SATISFACTION!
The point of this course is to get you thinking about how you can do your existing job, or something totally new, by combining your talent and your heart. A little tweak and you might just find that you're good at something, and actually enjoying it.
You take this course because you think you can do better. Maybe you can be a teacher, a mentor, a writer, or perhaps take a slight turn and head into a whole new field of expertise.
It's time to get yourself out of the rut. Life is too short.
Not for you? No problem.
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|Section 1: INTRODUCTION|
These 5 points will help you to revamp your IT career. You can use your existing experience and skills as a starting point.
You can pick and choose which of these five points you want to use.
|Section 2: WHERE IS YOUR IT CAREER RIGHT NOW?|
You really need to have a good reason to jump out of bed in the morning. If you're in a rut, then you either have to change your attitude or change your job. You spend a lot of time at work, so you naturally want to make it valuable. Don't spin your wheels in your current job, when you could be taking on new challenges - either where you are or doing something new.
Do you ever see job ads where they ask for a whole list of (fairly impossible) skills that are supposed to be found all in the one candidate? Discouraging, isn't it? This lecture speaks about the skills mismatch, and what approach you can take before writing yourself off as a potential candidate.
|Quiz 1||4 questions|
Do a self-assessment of the skills you can bring to the market
|Section 3: WHAT COULD YOU BE DOING NEXT?|
You shouldn't need to throw out all of your years of experience. You can build on the skills and experience that you already have. Renovate, don't detonate!
By drawing on your experience with migrations, installations, upgrades, design, team work, troubleshooting, you can dip your toes into a new area so that you have a gentle landing into some new area of IT.
The goal is to be good at what you do and to love doing it.
You have contacts within your own organisation, where you are known and (hopefully) respected. Looking to work within your existing environment may be less of a learning curve than something totally new. However, it does require you to get organised, look for opportunities, and hand off responsibilities to others where you can so that you can focus on new skills.
The biggest enemy when moving to something new is being attached to the status quo.
Experience: the DifferencePreview
You can draw on your experience by becoming a mentor. This is a way of sharing your knowledge, building your profile in the industry, and opening new opportunities.
There's a huge opening if you can explain things simply. You can submit articles for IT magazines, host your own blog, produce training videos, or become a trainer.
You can't stand still in your career. Even if you do nothing, things will change anyway, so it's best to be ready for them.
This section covered the next steps you can take to build on your skills and move into a new role, or take on some challenges in your existing role.
The next step is to look at things from a business point of view. (Don't worry: I'm a techie. You won't be doing profit and loss analysis).
|Quiz 2||1 question|
Look at ways in which you can move into mentoring someone else.
|Section 4: THE BUSINESS ANGLE|
There's a great need for people who can bridge the gap between IT and the business side of things. You are at an advantage if you can understand and explain the business benefit, rather than just the technical advantages of the IT environment.
This lecture encourages you to ask what the business driver is for different technologies, and it proposes a great, non-technical question that you can ask everywhere you go.
IT people who work in infrastructure are particularly aware of removing the single point of failure. Your source of income can also be a single point of failure, so it's important to have options ready if you should lose that income.
By seeking multiple sources of income, you can futureproof yourself. It's always good to have an immediate fallback plan, in case you lose your primary income source.
|Quiz 3||2 questions|
Ask yourself what opportunities you have to broaden your income base.
|Section 5: CONCLUSION|
I have worked in the IT field for over 20 years, and have done plenty of teaching and writing, both within IT and in much wider domains. I'm a regular author for Power IT Pro, IBM Systems Magazine and IBM developerWorks.
Having worked across many different businesses (and in government), I see a lot of very skilled IT people in jobs where they are not able to use their talents so much. Highly specialised people are frustrated, spending their time on routine, mundane tasks.
I love writing and talking about positive approaches to IT, and how to adapt to technological changes.
I myself was in a full-time role for many years, but have been a successful freelance contractor since 2008. That includes right through the Global Financial Crisis. This gives me a unique perspective on the IT world, as I'm not dependent on any single job or company. I'd like to share this with you.