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Career pivots and tropes (split thread) (Public Board)

by Cornpop Sutton ⌂, A bad bad dude who makes good shine., Monday, May 01, 2023, 23:21 (296 days ago)
edited by Cornpop Sutton, Thursday, May 04, 2023, 12:55

I should have seen the handwriting on the wall in ... 1991. I should have pursued a new degree then.

You were in your 30s then? That seems to be a good time for a career change. Beyond that and it's more of an uphill battle.

Yes to the last question, your guess is correct. That's the last window of time in my life I could see that changing careers was feasible and possible with good results.

What prevented me from doing something like that in those days was geek self-image. I was committed to proving I could have made a go of things. The IT and SW dev field heated up for a few years after that and I did barely alright.

In the broader view I should have recognized at that time (1990-95ish) that the hot hiring I experienced fresh out of school wasn't coming back.

The so called "expert" here... :)

by IT guy, Wednesday, May 03, 2023, 22:43 (294 days ago) @ Cornpop Sutton

What career would you have pivoted to if you could take a time machine and go back 30 years?

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The so called "expert" here... :)

by Cornpop Sutton ⌂, A bad bad dude who makes good shine., Wednesday, May 03, 2023, 22:45 (294 days ago) @ IT guy

I would have gone for social status and what everyone said I should do which would have been law.

In reality I should have gone into worm farming. Probably more stable.

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The so called "expert" here... :)

by ,ndo, Certifiable!, Thursday, May 04, 2023, 05:58 (294 days ago) @ Cornpop Sutton

I got Honours in Law yet couldn't get a single interview with anyone employing lawyers be they private practice or government departments. So I got a truck licence (which I had wanted anyway). I can't speak for the US but perhaps you might have had a similar experience.

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^ Example of Career Tropes

by Cornpop Sutton ⌂, A bad bad dude who makes good shine., Thursday, May 04, 2023, 13:00 (293 days ago) @ ,ndo
edited by Cornpop Sutton, Thursday, May 04, 2023, 13:32

My now wife dated an attorney before she met me. He was maybe in his early 40s, and was divorced with two small kids w custody. She wound up almost supporting him like he was homeless, even though he was employed by the city. His credit card was always denied and he never had any money. When she met me, a lowly commodity IT contractor condescended by every business busybody I met, she upgraded substantially. All of a sudden she was with someone who could sucessfully charge a dinner to a credit card.

Another data point is a guy I was in elementary school with who apparently entered law school in his early 30s (I was already in engineering) and was mentored by the locally based huge computer corporation (one of the B.U.N.C.H.) He was groomed into their chief corporate attorney. $$$$

I suspect in order to do well in law you have to follow the path shown in the show "Better Call Saul" - go to law school and meanwhile get sponsored by a business or law firm who wants to develop you. IOW the credential itself doesn't have much marketability unless you want a low paid civil service job like public defender. You need some company to "brand" you as theirs and mentor you.

And you know - I did already mention worm farming.

The so called "expert" here... :)

by JoFrance, Thursday, May 04, 2023, 19:11 (293 days ago) @ Cornpop Sutton

Its a good thing you didn't choose to go into law. I worked for 20 years as a network manager in a law firm and it was very tough for attorneys starting out. Its a very political environment. There is a lot of nepotism and the only new attorneys that got interviewed or hired knew someone important or went to certain schools.

I don't think you would've like the caste system that exists at law firms. A lot of young attorneys get burned out and disillusioned rather quickly. By the 00's, the legal field became so flooded many of them couldn't find jobs.

The 90's was a good time for the tech field so IMO you made a better choice by sticking with that instead of going into law. Somehow I can't see you as a worm farmer. Nah.

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The so called "expert" here... :)

by Cornpop Sutton ⌂, A bad bad dude who makes good shine., Thursday, May 04, 2023, 19:43 (293 days ago) @ JoFrance

The 90's was a good time for the tech field so IMO you made a better choice by sticking with that instead of going into law.

Your comments resonate with ,ndo's.

So what I said is fairly accurate - to succeed at it one needs a sponsor who can support your career moves.

Somehow I can't see you as a worm farmer. Nah.

How about cricket farming?

Sell to rednecks and briars that operate bait shops...

The so called "expert" here... :)

by IT guy, Friday, May 05, 2023, 00:01 (293 days ago) @ Cornpop Sutton

I remember taking a law class in college and the instructor (who was a practicing lawyer) spent the entire semester trying to talk this one student out of going to law school lol.

It doesn't seem as if anyone likes their career after doing it for a long time.

The so called "expert" here... :)

by JoFrance, Saturday, May 06, 2023, 19:42 (291 days ago) @ IT guy

I always loved IT work, but not all the politics that came with it. Politics come with every job, but my issue with the IT field is that it is very ageist. When you get older, say over 50, you lose your marketability in the field. You can still work if you keep your skills up, but your selection of jobs becomes much more mediocre.

This isn't true in other fields. Age is considered a plus in the legal field. Lawyers can work in the field for as long as they live providing they become a partner in a firm or an expert witness, consultant, etc. A professional occupation like law, accounting or healthcare retains its viability. Your breadth of knowledge is considered a huge plus no matter your age.

Those professions have licenses and that really is the difference between IT and professional fields. IT has certifications that end up meaning nothing as time goes by but professional licenses maintain their viability.

The instructor in your law class did that student a favor. The law field is a real rat race and you burn out quick. Even if there is the possibility of job longevity in law, the field is too political and you likely won't be doing anything but grunt work.

The so called "expert" here... :)

by IT guy, Monday, May 08, 2023, 22:07 (289 days ago) @ JoFrance

I always loved IT work, but not all the politics that came with it.

I know what you mean. I always hated the politics and tried to avoid when I could. That's probably why I was never promoted into a management position.

Politics come with every job, but my issue with the IT field is that it is very ageist. When you get older, say over 50, you lose your marketability in the field. You can still work if you keep your skills up, but your selection of jobs becomes much more mediocre.

I'm not there yet but not too far away.

This isn't true in other fields. Age is considered a plus in the legal field. Lawyers can work in the field for as long as they live providing they become a partner in a firm or an expert witness, consultant, etc. A professional occupation like law, accounting or healthcare retains its viability. Your breadth of knowledge is considered a huge plus no matter your age.

Sometimes I think about a last ditch effort to go for an Accounting degree but my original degree was decades ago and I bet that none of the classes that I previously took would count toward another degree. It would take many years to get the degree. I'll probably end up just grinding it out in tech for as long as I can. Maybe I'll look into getting a hair transplant down the line and leave the first decade of my career off of my resume. LOL

Those professions have licenses and that really is the difference between IT and professional fields. IT has certifications that end up meaning nothing as time goes by but professional licenses maintain their viability.

True

The instructor in your law class did that student a favor. The law field is a real rat race and you burn out quick. Even if there is the possibility of job longevity in law, the field is too political and you likely won't be doing anything but grunt work.

Yeah. I wonder if he listened to the guy's advice and changed his mind. I long forgot his name but would otherwise look him up.

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I Have Transitioned Careers Several Times Within IT & Almost Out Of IT

by Hillarys Colon, Monday, May 08, 2023, 03:43 (290 days ago) @ Cornpop Sutton

I should have seen the handwriting on the wall in ... 1991. I should have pursued a new degree then.

You were in your 30s then? That seems to be a good time for a career change. Beyond that and it's more of an uphill battle.


Yes to the last question, your guess is correct. That's the last window of time in my life I could see that changing careers was feasible and possible with good results.

What prevented me from doing something like that in those days was geek self-image. I was committed to proving I could have made a go of things. The IT and SW dev field heated up for a few years after that and I did barely alright.

In the broader view I should have recognized at that time (1990-95ish) that the hot hiring I experienced fresh out of school wasn't coming back.

I got into IT via telecom in the early 90s just before the Internet exploded as a programmer. I was not even in it for 3 years and I wanted out. I freaking hated corporate America. And the field was not what I expected. I even contemplated going back to school to study what I had originally been interested in which was art/animation.

The problem was that I was making a lot of money at that time for my age. My parents would have been mortified, I just got out of school and wanted to quit. Coming from a poor background I sucked it up because of the $$.

As the late 90s were winding down I remember reading this article in Infoword about the H1B and what it was. It dawned on me that I was about to be competing with Inda and China for work. Needless to say I transitioned out of pure hands on IT work and focused on project management, business analysis and architecture.

So the dot com hit and salaries went bananas. Many people I knew left to work in the dot com. They made FAT, FAT money even by todays standards. I stayed put because in my poor brain - a bird in the hand was worth two in the bush. In the end not a single one became a millionaire. Many were made unemployed and had to scramble to find a job. Some got out of IT totally.

In 2001 I got laid off for the first time. Dot com had imploded and there were tons of IT people out on the street. I seriously thought about getting out of IT totally. I was late 30s at the time. But what? I thought about finance, accounting and marketing. But I realized those people were just as miserable as IT people. So I took some plumbing classes at the community college. I was seriously thinking about getting out of IT again.

I was only out about 3 months and found a job as a project manager on Wall Street. I have been doing project management ever since. My first job out of telecom was on Wall Street, boy was that a rude awakening. You know that movie Wall Street? It was real! Gordon Gecko was not a figment of someones imagination.

Than I got laid off from there and I was determined not to go back to telecom. I wanted to broaden my background in other industries to make myself more versatile. I ended up in a pharma company doing a variety of things as a contractor. That lasted for a while and the contract dried up.

Than I went back to telecom doing something totally different. I was doing IT cost reduction and IT procurement. I really liked that job as my focus was on saving money. Did that for about 3-4 years till the contract ran dry.

Than I went to an insurance company doing IT procurement. Did that for a few years and than transitioned back to a more hands on role. I was doing performance monitoring. Absolutely hated the work and the company. Than I got laid off just before I vested.

Job market was eh but I was offered two jobs from totally different industries - one was financial services, the other was pharma. Financial services paid more but I really wanted to get into pharma. I chose pharma as there are tons of drug companies here and its an extremely incestuous industry. Unless you have pharma experience they wont talk to you. . It worked out for me as I ended up working on some cutting edge stuff and still am in it.

Maybe because I came from a poor background but when things happened I always viewed it as an opportunity to make a change and take advantage of the situation. I guess thats the key - know when to kick and when to stick as they say in football.

I Have Transitioned Careers Several Times Within IT & Almost Out Of IT

by IT guy, Monday, May 08, 2023, 22:16 (289 days ago) @ Hillarys Colon

Interesting career path.

How serious were you about switching to plumbing? Sometimes I will get these thoughts re switching to HVAC.

I have also thought about Accounting but yeah they do tend to be just as miserable as IT people. That's another field I've thought about switching to, but at this stage of the game, not worth it.

That's good you were able to pivot and gain experience in different sub-fields. You have a wide variety of experience.

My skillset is fairly broad as well. Most of my jobs have been a mix of support and development. I pivoted into more of a support role in a software compan in this last job search, even though I did have a couple offers from non-tech companies for pure developer jobs that paid more (which would have required longer hours and/or moving).

The boss and I recently had a one on one and he asked where I want to go (career-wise). I had no answer for him as I hadn't put much thought into it. I thought before that I'd like to get into analytics or data science or the like, but I hate to do all that studying without having something already lined up or a good chance of landing something in that area. I don't network with former co-workers or do any of that which I guess doesn't really help as far as career advancement goes.

I think I'll just keep grinding away for now, until they lay me off or I get burnt out, but probably should pick a direction to go before that happens.

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My own small pivot

by Cornpop Sutton ⌂, A bad bad dude who makes good shine., Monday, May 08, 2023, 22:56 (289 days ago) @ IT guy
edited by Cornpop Sutton, Monday, May 08, 2023, 23:01

I was working for some asshole or another up through the early 90s. My resume had deteriorated in the local market to the point that I only was able to get roles in shitty small stupid companies owned by narcissistic dickheads.

After a couple of layoffs I started to think of a way out. (This is where I should have researched law school, or worm farming... ok cricket farming.)

I chanced upon some discussions on Compuserve computer forums about contracting. I KNEW about contractors from having worked in some DoD places and these guys were itinerants who usually lived in a travel home that they drove to each new place they worked at for a few months to a year. Well paid but a rugged lifestyle.

I ran into a book called "Computermoney" by a now forgotten author named Alan Canton. It was published in '92 or '93 and it basically described the IT programming and sysadmin contracting scene. It claimed that you could easily double your income by finding contracts doing what you already did at work.

And NOT traveling... Apparently by the early 90s companies had more opened up to selectively using hourly contractors for mission critical applications in a wide range of industries, not just DoD.

Yeah ok, here is the book... https://www.abebooks.com/9781883422011/Computermoney-Making-Serious-Dollars-000-1883422019/plp

The book gave me the confidence to stop accepting FTE offers and interviews and push for contracts instead. I credit the unsung author with saving my sanity and maybe my life at the time.

So I found gigs successfully, and for a while fairly consistently, and chained into one after another up through the early 2000s. Then contracting itself went to shit as all of us here know.

So that was the one time in my life I made a career move that all of the dumb normies I worked around claimed was suicidal, who had countless hard luck stories about guys who tried and failed and had to crawl on their knees back to employers.

In hindsight I really had no work friends. As soon as I did 1/10 of 1% better they developed hard ons of hate and envy.

My specialization was Windows desktop applications. At the time, this was red scorching hot as a niche.

So my pivot felt radical but was probably an uber conservative thing to do in retrospect.

As Captain Adama said in Battlestar Galactica, you stay with what you know. I guess that's the theme of my career.

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My own small pivot

by Hillarys Colon, Tuesday, May 09, 2023, 07:06 (289 days ago) @ Cornpop Sutton

I was working for some asshole or another up through the early 90s. My resume had deteriorated in the local market to the point that I only was able to get roles in shitty small stupid companies owned by narcissistic dickheads.

Been there, done that, got the shirt. My only differnce is that it was giant companies.


After a couple of layoffs I started to think of a way out. (This is where I should have researched law school, or worm farming... ok cricket farming.)

As I have gotten older I realized that there is a lot of ways to make money besides what you may do. I didnt discover this till later in life. When I was younger I was totally unfocused. Didnt know what I wanted and was lukewarm about almost everything.

I chanced upon some discussions on Compuserve computer forums about contracting. I KNEW about contractors from having worked in some DoD places and these guys were itinerants who usually lived in a travel home that they drove to each new place they worked at for a few months to a year. Well paid but a rugged lifestyle.

I remember hearing about guys like this. I hear this is still going on in Silly Valley.

I ran into a book called "Computermoney" by a now forgotten author named Alan Canton. It was published in '92 or '93 and it basically described the IT programming and sysadmin contracting scene. It claimed that you could easily double your income by finding contracts doing what you already did at work.

And NOT traveling... Apparently by the early 90s companies had more opened up to selectively using hourly contractors for mission critical applications in a wide range of industries, not just DoD.

I always HATED traveling for work and refuse to do it even now. Its too disruptive in your life. Who the hell wants to live in a hotel or new apartment all the time.


Yeah ok, here is the book... https://www.abebooks.com/9781883422011/Computermoney-Making-Serious-Dollars-000-1883422019/plp

Interesting book. The dynamic in the 90s was so different. I am pissed that I couldnt figure it out at the time.

The book gave me the confidence to stop accepting FTE offers and interviews and push for contracts instead. I credit the unsung author with saving my sanity and maybe my life at the time.

Sanity is a good thing.

So I found gigs successfully, and for a while fairly consistently, and chained into one after another up through the early 2000s. Then contracting itself went to shit as all of us here know.

Yep.

So that was the one time in my life I made a career move that all of the dumb normies I worked around claimed was suicidal, who had countless hard luck stories about guys who tried and failed and had to crawl on their knees back to employers.

I knew tons of people that crawled back to Ma Bell who SPIT on them. They did all kinds of shit to them. Because Ma Bell knew they were trapped in the telco industry because thats all the experience they had they did stuff to them just because they could. A big example is RATE CUTS. They would tell all the contractors they have to take a mandatory 10% rate cut. If you dont take it, than you are unemployed. I saw very few contractors that would say f*** you and walk out. Most just grumbled and ate it.

Another thing I saw them do to people was forced sabaticals. Example - Oh the year end is slow, we are going to put you on unpaid leave till the second week in January. ENJOY and HAPPY HOLIDAYS! Most people with half a brain would start looking for a job. NOPE, they just ATE IT.

In hindsight I really had no work friends. As soon as I did 1/10 of 1% better they developed hard ons of hate and envy.

Agreed 1000$%. Work friends are not nor ever were really friends. What they are is work aquaintances. Nothing more. I had two guys who I went to lunch with for close to 10 years. When I got laid off, I never saw them or heard from them again. As I said, they are NOT your friends. I keep my personal life and work life totally separate.


My specialization was Windows desktop applications. At the time, this was red scorching hot as a niche.

I remember because I wanted to get into it!


So my pivot felt radical but was probably an uber conservative thing to do in retrospect.

I think you did ok as any of us could have done.


As Captain Adama said in Battlestar Galactica, you stay with what you know. I guess that's the theme of my career.

I get it.

My own small pivot

by IT guy, Tuesday, May 09, 2023, 23:06 (288 days ago) @ Cornpop Sutton

Interesting story.

That same book is on Amazon and has a review....from 2000.

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https://www.amazon.com/Computermoney-Serious-Dollars-High-Tech-Consulting/dp/1883422019/

The day I discovered how much consultants on my project were being paid for doing the same work as I was doing, I decided to be a consultant myself. Higher income is just one obvious attraction of consulting; there are many others. On the other hand it's definitely not for everyone. Alan Canton's book will help you decide for yourself. Here, in one well-written and candid package, are all the things you have to consider, from honestly assessing your job, people, organizational skills and self-discipline to the practicalities of establishing your small business *in your area* (that's an important point that other books I've seen fail to consider). In short, Computermoney answered all the unknowns in the back of my mind that were holding me back and gave me a clear and, as it turns out, accurate set of expectations of the consulting lifestyle. I have given copies of this book to six people over the years since it was first given to me. Four of them reached the same conclusion I did and are now well paid computer consultants. Good luck with your decision!

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Interesting how a book can change one's life.

In hindsight I really had no work friends. As soon as I did 1/10 of 1% better they developed hard ons of hate and envy.

Amazing how people can get petty and jealous as fuck if you're doing just barely better than they are.

Looking back, I thought I had work friends but now I realize that they really were not.

When I quit my last job, I figured "oh I'll keep in touch with some of these people" and "will see them again". Only time any of them reached out is when my old boss tried to take advantage of his personal connection with me (that I thought we had) to try and lowball me into contracting for them at a bargain basement price. I'm sure they all were pissed when I told them my price (which was closer to market value). If they were, so be it. They figured I was going to let them take advantage of me again.

My specialization was Windows desktop applications. At the time, this was red scorching hot as a niche.

So my pivot felt radical but was probably an uber conservative thing to do in retrospect.

As Captain Adama said in Battlestar Galactica, you stay with what you know. I guess that's the theme of my career.

At least you took the plunge, even if you were not happy with how things turned out in the long run. Many many people talk about it but never take action.

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I gained beaucoup life insight going into contracting.

by Cornpop Sutton ⌂, A bad bad dude who makes good shine., Tuesday, May 09, 2023, 23:24 (288 days ago) @ IT guy

I still had a ton to learn about life after the point that I decided to consult. However, just that leap taught me many things about people and human relations.

Most people in business are super petty to the extent that they will go out of their way to spoil your win if it galls them. Even and especially owners and business people.

Co-workers are almost always the ultimate cowardly normies. They stay in their ostrich holes, they don't want to hear about reality outside their holes, even reacting with anger and resentment when shown reality. And they desperately avoid appearing to not conform.

Co-workers are as a result always envious and miserable.

Most employee/FTE types are a cross between North Korean citizens and dopey NPR listening brainwashed liberal normies. They have attributes of both. (Specific example: co workers will usually rat out acquaintances to management. That's basically totalitarian social behavior.)

Watching my money closely became a high priority once I started contracting. A heads down employee can count on the paycheck. As a contractor you have to have the funds every quarter to pay your withholdings+FICA as well as just pay your bills... but taxes come first. I would hear about dumbasses that I used to work with who got out of contracting basically because they failed to accumulate the quarterly tax payment and then were in the hole and had some interest and penalties. They blamed contracting but it was really that they were thinking like 10 year olds and lack any semblance of financial self control.

In general most grown adults think like 10 year olds about their own affairs.

Also, being on the outside I started to see more clearly how childish and gossipy most of my peers were.

In short - I stopped being a "civilian" when I decided to turn down jobs and contract.

A small step compared to other life steps, perhaps, but I know so fucking many people IRL who wouldn't ever take even a baby step like that.

I gained beaucoup life insight going into contracting.

by IT guy, Thursday, May 11, 2023, 22:44 (286 days ago) @ Cornpop Sutton

Most people in business are super petty to the extent that they will go out of their way to spoil your win if it galls them. Even and especially owners and business people.

Would you include middle management in this category? I've been in situations where work I've done will attract the attention of someone in upper management and the boss gets insecure and starts sandbagging. It's usually done in a passive aggressive way though.

Co-workers are almost always the ultimate cowardly normies. They stay in their ostrich holes, they don't want to hear about reality outside their holes, even reacting with anger and resentment when shown reality.

True! It seems like 20% of the people tend to do 80% of the work in most companies. The 80% freeload off of the 20% but would never give them credit. If anyone in the 20% even insinuate that this is the case, they are a big target of the anger and resentment that you speak of.

And they desperately avoid appearing to not conform.

Actually I've run into the opposite in recent years. Maybe things have changed. Earlier in my career, nobody wanted to come across as a "suck up". Now it seems that everyone is a "suck up" and there is no shame in it.

Co-workers are as a result always envious and miserable.

True!
Many people are weird when it comes to work and money. They pretend they love their job (look at social media). Yet they resent having to work and do what they can to do as little as possible, while sabotaging those with an actual work ethic.

They try to make as much money for themselves as possible while shaming others who earn more (even if they worked for it).....as if any of it really matters in the grand scheme of things.

Most employee/FTE types are a cross between North Korean citizens and dopey NPR listening brainwashed liberal normies. They have attributes of both. (Specific example: co workers will usually rat out acquaintances to management. That's basically totalitarian social behavior.)

Many believe they are owed a job and that it is not on them to earn a job.

I know the "tattle tale" type. They nitpick at something you "failed" to do and catch you off guard while CCing multiple managers. I've run into this on quite a few occasions.

BTW had a first (and likely last) date the other day with some chick who listens to NPR. I guess that is a red flag lol.

Watching my money closely became a high priority once I started contracting. A heads down employee can count on the paycheck. As a contractor you have to have the funds every quarter to pay your withholdings+FICA as well as just pay your bills... but taxes come first. I would hear about dumbasses that I used to work with who got out of contracting basically because they failed to accumulate the quarterly tax payment and then were in the hole and had some interest and penalties. They blamed contracting but it was really that they were thinking like 10 year olds and lack any semblance of financial self control.

In general most grown adults think like 10 year olds about their own affairs.

Yeah many tend to mismanage their money and live beyond their means.

Also, being on the outside I started to see more clearly how childish and gossipy most of my peers were.

I saw this in school and it hasn't changed in adulthood. The bigger the company, the more of these types that tend to work there.

In short - I stopped being a "civilian" when I decided to turn down jobs and contract.

A small step compared to other life steps, perhaps, but I know so fucking many people IRL who wouldn't ever take even a baby step like that.

True! And then I'm sure some have had the nerve to say you're lucky when it was all about your planning and work ethic.

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My own small pivot

by ,ndo, Certifiable!, Wednesday, May 10, 2023, 03:53 (288 days ago) @ IT guy

Many many people talk about it but never take action.

Better to make a mistake by doing something than make a mistake by doing nothing.

My own small pivot

by IT guy, Thursday, May 11, 2023, 22:44 (286 days ago) @ ,ndo

True!

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I Have Transitioned Careers Several Times Within IT & Almost Out Of IT

by Hillarys Colon, Tuesday, May 09, 2023, 06:52 (289 days ago) @ IT guy

Interesting career path.

How serious were you about switching to plumbing? Sometimes I will get these thoughts re switching to HVAC.

I was quasi-serious about it. Here was my problem - by your late 30s you have already been doing what you do at least 10-15 years and the money was good. On top of this - plumbing like many other things likes em young. At 37 do you want to be the apprentice where they tell you to go to the plumbing place and pick up 200lbs of pipe? You get to load it in the truck and unload it from the truck ;) . AND thats IF they are even willing to hire you, many wont.

I know a number of people that attempted career changes later in life and failed miserably.

Example 1: Decided to go back to school to get a masters degree in marketing. Fairly prestigious school. Guess what? At 40-something years old NOBODY would hire him to start over in marketing. He had no choice to do IT and is back in telecom but not at our original employer.

Example 2: Got whacked a few times. Was morbidly depressed. Was also a former body builder and seized on the idea of buying his own gym. But he not only got the idea of buying a gym - it was going to be out of state in the deep south. So he and his wife liquidated everything they own, in many cases at a huge loss and moved to NC. Than they found out the little southern town that was a tourist destination was not what they had thought. After 4 years or so they realized it was never going to work out. So now they are going to sell the business and move back up north. So he finds a job in IT back up north as a contractor. Shortly thereafter got a job as a perm on Wall Street. He wasn't even in the job for a month and his wife left him. She did not want to move back up north. And than the divorce fun began.

I know of some young people who did in their early 20s though successfully. So really it is all about timing. One was a teacher who became a fitness guru. Another was a body builder who go into IT. Though when I saw him last I could not believe how much he had deteriourated physically. Overweight, bad color, blah, blah. The IT really did a number on him but at least he is working.


I have also thought about Accounting but yeah they do tend to be just as miserable as IT people. That's another field I've thought about switching to, but at this stage of the game, not worth it.

Totally not worth it from what I see unless its a move within the company you work with. Where I work there are tons of accounting, chemist and biology types that have gotten into IT. We tend to look down on them because they dont really know anything. BUT they are making good money.


That's good you were able to pivot and gain experience in different sub-fields. You have a wide variety of experience.

Yep. And that was my goal - to be well rounded.


My skillset is fairly broad as well. Most of my jobs have been a mix of support and development. I pivoted into more of a support role in a software compan in this last job search, even though I did have a couple offers from non-tech companies for pure developer jobs that paid more (which would have required longer hours and/or moving).

Broadening your skills is a good thing IMHO. I think hands coding is a young mans game. For me at some point I got burned out on the constant schedule and OT.

The boss and I recently had a one on one and he asked where I want to go (career-wise). I had no answer for him as I hadn't put much thought into it. I thought before that I'd like to get into analytics or data science or the like, but I hate to do all that studying without having something already lined up or a good chance of landing something in that area. I don't network with former co-workers or do any of that which I guess doesn't really help as far as career advancement goes.

I am involved with analyitics and data science otherwirse known as modeling and simulation. Thats what I do for a living, been doing it for 10 years now. Modeling and simulation is the precursor to AI/maching learning. I am also involved with AI/machine learning and can say for a fact its not what the media portrays it to be.

If you are interested in getting into it the best way to do it is via industry groups. Join any group that you can find that is involved with it and network like crazy. My boss is a hitter in the field and is heavily involved in all kinds of industry groups. The best time to change jobs is while you still have one. And if you want to change sub areas, now is the time to go do it.

I ended up in modeling and simulation by sheer chance. I had been involved with grid computing in the past and was familar with it in a few companies - well my current employer was looking for a PM for a modeling and simulation application and they hired me as a contractor. Eventually that application evolved into something else and evolved with it.

I have found that former coworkers are fairly useless. Not a single one of the jobs I have found I got through someone I know. It was all me busting my ass selling myself at the interview.

I will warn you though the H1Bs and Indians are pouring into the AI/machine learning space as its the big new thing. Whenever a big new thing appears they pour into it like cockroaches. The only thing I can say is that its highly specialized. Amazon cloud is also doing it if you are interested. You can set up an account for next to nothing.

I think I'll just keep grinding away for now, until they lay me off or I get burnt out, but probably should pick a direction to go before that happens.

Now is the time to start before that happens. IT IMHO is a shitshow today.

I Have Transitioned Careers Several Times Within IT & Almost Out Of IT

by IT guy, Tuesday, May 09, 2023, 23:16 (288 days ago) @ Hillarys Colon


I was quasi-serious about it. Here was my problem - by your late 30s you have already been doing what you do at least 10-15 years and the money was good. On top of this - plumbing like many other things likes em young. At 37 do you want to be the apprentice where they tell you to go to the plumbing place and pick up 200lbs of pipe? You get to load it in the truck and unload it from the truck ;) . AND thats IF they are even willing to hire you, many wont.


Good points. That's another thing....physical jobs like that are tougher the older one gets.

I know a number of people that attempted career changes later in life and failed miserably.

Example 1: Decided to go back to school to get a masters degree in marketing. Fairly prestigious school. Guess what? At 40-something years old NOBODY would hire him to start over in marketing. He had no choice to do IT and is back in telecom but not at our original employer.

Some think that going back for another degree is a magic ticket to some new path, but the older one gets the more valuable OTJ experience is and the less valuable formal education is.


Example 2: Got whacked a few times. Was morbidly depressed. Was also a former body builder and seized on the idea of buying his own gym. But he not only got the idea of buying a gym - it was going to be out of state in the deep south. So he and his wife liquidated everything they own, in many cases at a huge loss and moved to NC. Than they found out the little southern town that was a tourist destination was not what they had thought. After 4 years or so they realized it was never going to work out. So now they are going to sell the business and move back up north. So he finds a job in IT back up north as a contractor. Shortly thereafter got a job as a perm on Wall Street. He wasn't even in the job for a month and his wife left him. She did not want to move back up north. And than the divorce fun began.

I know of some young people who did in their early 20s though successfully. So really it is all about timing. One was a teacher who became a fitness guru. Another was a body builder who go into IT. Though when I saw him last I could not believe how much he had deteriourated physically. Overweight, bad color, blah, blah. The IT really did a number on him but at least he is working.

Funny you mention fitness. I have had thoughts in the past (when I was more ignorant) about getting into the fitness industry and/or becoming a personal trainer due to a passion for fitnes. It's really an uphill battle to become successful in that racket. Many get out because they can't find clients or it does not pay enough. Some can make it work but not many.


Totally not worth it from what I see unless its a move within the company you work with. Where I work there are tons of accounting, chemist and biology types that have gotten into IT. We tend to look down on them because they dont really know anything. BUT they are making good money.

Good points.

Broadening your skills is a good thing IMHO. I think hands coding is a young mans game. For me at some point I got burned out on the constant schedule and OT.

Yeah I have not interest in any of that, prefer to have work-life balance even if it means less pay.


I am involved with analyitics and data science otherwirse known as modeling and simulation. Thats what I do for a living, been doing it for 10 years now. Modeling and simulation is the precursor to AI/maching learning. I am also involved with AI/machine learning and can say for a fact its not what the media portrays it to be.

If you are interested in getting into it the best way to do it is via industry groups. Join any group that you can find that is involved with it and network like crazy. My boss is a hitter in the field and is heavily involved in all kinds of industry groups. The best time to change jobs is while you still have one. And if you want to change sub areas, now is the time to go do it.

Thanks for the advice. I don't live in a big city so something like that would likely need to be done online. And yes it's definitely better to change jobs when you already have one.


I ended up in modeling and simulation by sheer chance. I had been involved with grid computing in the past and was familar with it in a few companies - well my current employer was looking for a PM for a modeling and simulation application and they hired me as a contractor. Eventually that application evolved into something else and evolved with it.

Nice


I have found that former coworkers are fairly useless. Not a single one of the jobs I have found I got through someone I know. It was all me busting my ass selling myself at the interview.

Same here, every single job. Hell....my first few jobs were obtained by newspaper ads, the old fashioned way lol. Only the last job was obtained after applying to an online job board ad.


I will warn you though the H1Bs and Indians are pouring into the AI/machine learning space as its the big new thing. Whenever a big new thing appears they pour into it like cockroaches. The only thing I can say is that its highly specialized. Amazon cloud is also doing it if you are interested. You can set up an account for next to nothing.

I thought about going back to school at one point for a Masters in Business Analytics. I stumbled across the student roster and most were Indian names. Ha!


Now is the time to start before that happens. IT IMHO is a shitshow today.

Right on both counts. I think it's time for me to focus.

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