The technological mindset and skills are far different from the managerial, but because of salary considerations, many who are technologically proficient may be tempted to move into management. Unless you really have the managerial skills profile, it is a very terrible mistake and you will probably end up being miserable.
Toni, your suggestions are good ones. I would add that the basis of the problem is that those in management do not have respect for a high level of expertise in technical areas because it is completely foreign to them: If it is difficult for a technologist to be a successful manager, it is impossible for a manager to become a technologist (assuming they have managerial skills and no technological skills). The technologist may be able to adapt after a fashion, even if it is awkward, but without the skills, the manager would be completely lost.
The lack of respect stems from a lack of understanding: A person without the skills, particularly if living in the realm of management, assumes that the technologist is somehow inferior (sometimes leading to a frustrated technologist to say, "Fine! If you're so smart, you fix it!" and then leave (and unless the management can find a replacement or alternative to resolving the problem, the problem won't get fixed).
This did not seem to be a problem before the 1960s or maybe as late as the 1970s: Technologists seem to have earned respect and were either paid well or had opportunities to move or grow. They certainly seemed to be a happier bunch and I can remember days that it was a joy to come to work to build a project or find a solution: It was a challenge, a matter of satisfaction with a job well done and an opportunity to grow in technological expertise, exploring the frontier, so to speak.
Business has become so focused on the bottom line and moving at the speed of light that excellent quality and pride in workmanship seems to have all but disappeared: Get the job done, just well enough to get by -- and don't try to build in extras for customer satisfaction! It's the actuarial approach where if products or services fail, so what? We have to expect that -- just keep the failures down to a margin that doesn't raise flags to the customers as a body. In the arena of fast, cheap and good, pick all three, but keep it cheap.
Management assumes plug and play: Resources are interchangeable -- if one tech doesn't work out, then we just swap for another OR we outsource.
I'm not really certain how to build respect in a dysfunctional environment where management lies, cheats, steals and has absolutely no respect with a narcissistic attitude, often bordering on the sociopath or even psychopath (there are not only a lot more psychopaths in management these days, but corporations told Dr. Robert Hare and Dr. Paul Babiak in their research for "Snakes in Suits" that they actually preferred psychopaths -- just the kind of person we're looking for -- to which the authors noted that the companies didn't know what they were getting themselves into and it should be noted that this mindset of the corporate world is very telling: Beware... you might not be dealing with management, you might be dealing with psychopaths).
Perhaps the solution for some is just to batten down the hatches and go with the flow, pumping out the work and not worrying too much about the quality -- doing just enough to get the work done. If you can find a way to build respect for your work, go for it, but if not, either be willing to accept the consequences and live within a less than desirable situation or change to either a different expertise or leave the venue entirely.
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