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Need some Career advice

By Danatega ·
I work for a top 500 company as a desktop support tech, have attained my MCSE in Win 2000 and been working to complete my CCNA, I'm 48 and have about 7 years total in IT. The company I work for has implemented some changes that really isn't favorable to our Help Desk and Desktop support techs. We were told by upper management that no one from these two groups will be promoted to the position of Network Admin, which in the past was the normal course of action. I was the last person to be promoted to a Network Admin position 2 years ago and it was no fun, it was swim or sink. and I did make some mistakes, to my demise I sunk and was offered to go back to the desktop support job which I did. This was a year ago, mutiple people has pulled me aside since then, even my current manager and has told me that I was a victim of circumstances and was setup to fail. My question is were do I go from here, if I stay, I'll never be promoted as a network administrator, I can be promoted to Sr Desktop tech but in order to do so I have to get MCDST and Mous certified (another new change). The only good thing so far is that I got to keep my pay, my supervisor tells me I'm the highest paid desktop support tech they have, I can't say that for sure but I do know I'm limited for promotion and pay and my network admin skills are rusty. I thought about leaving but did I say I'm 48, open to suggestions.

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Not 48 but...

by jgarcia102066 In reply to Need some Career advice

One of the things I have brought up in previous posts (and gotten slammed as a result, but here it goes anyway) is that in order to find satisfaction in your work, you need to answer two questions. Hopefully, the answer to these questions is the same, but in either case, I think they are very important. Of course, there are other things to consider as well, such as quality of life, compensation, work environment, etc. The two questions I am posing are more for self-reflection.

1. What is/are your core competency/competencies?
2. What are you passionate about?

Now, when you are answering these questions, get to the root of the answer. For example, I have heard many people say that one of their core competencies is that they can work with their hands. This sounds good but what can you do with your hands? Work with wood? Fix Cars? Fix Computers? Knit? Crochet?

Really search for the root answer(s). If you determine that one of your core competencies and passion are for helping people to solve their computer problems by providing help desk support then go after the Sr. Desktop Tech position. If it's in the Network Management arena, then finish your CCNA certification, then either apply at your current company anyway or pursue other work. You may find that your core competencies and passion take you completely away from IT. Just find out what it is for you.

This could potentially help you find the answer you are looking for in terms of this post.

Ultimately, it doesn't matter what other people tell you, including me, your manager or your peers. You know yourself better than anyone and you just need to step back a bit and figure out what you really want to do. Don't allow yourself to be pushed into something you're not ready for and don't allow yourself to be held back from something you really want to be doing. Once you figure out where you want to be, do whatever it takes to get there.

Good luck, wherever your passions and competencies lead you. Whatever your age, wouldn't you rather spend the life you have doing whatever makes you happy (and pays the bills)? Just a thought!

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Career advice

by Info-Safety, LLC In reply to Need some Career advice

If you can get your employer to pay for professional development, you should certainly go for it. Now is a good time to start networking. You might be surprised at the job opportunities that become available to people interested in self-improvement, even those who are no longer 20-something. If something good and solid comes your your way, that would be a good time to consider leaving.

Good luck.

Craig Herberg

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I'm way beyond 48

by DC_GUY In reply to Need some Career advice

And I've made mistakes you haven't thought of yet. You will reach a point in your life when you stop aching for career advancement and start looking a little further ahead, toward retirement or whatever you think you might be doing in about twenty years.

Your age right now is a handicap anywhere except the consulting business. When people break down and hire a consultant they expect to see grey hair and a few battle scars so they know they got what they paid for. But those battle scars come pretty easily and often in the consulting business, it's not for the faint of heart or the lean of wallet.

How much of your energy do you really want to put into your job right now? Don't you have a family, vacation plans, other interests? If your kids are grown, your wife probably expects to finally kick back and spend some quality time with you, not listen to you grumble every night about a job you stayed at until 8pm. If your kids are still at home you should be thinking of them, not yourself.

Not all workplace problems can be solved quickly. You may have to be patient for a few years until something comes along that fulfills all your parameters. In the meantime, discover the other 75 percent of your life and start rewarding everyone for the support they've given you all these years.

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IT is not always a good place to build an IT career...

by Matthew Moran In reply to Need some Career advice

This is a personal soapbox for me. I don't always think, myopically guided IT departments, are great places to build an IT career. The idea that there is a set way - or a set restriction - on moving from one position to another is a bizarre occurance that seems indicative in IT.

For instance: I get certified - I get hired in desktop support - I promote to tier 2 support - I get into Network admin suppor - I then move to network admin role - I then move toward network engineering support, etc.

This is a mythical and unrealistic career path.

At your age, you probably have garnered other experience that can be used in a broader context. I believe smaller organizations with less myopic and rigid roles in their IT departments have much greater opportunity.

Also, you get to work more strategically with management and are often brought into newer technologies more quickly. They don't have the typical roles so defined as to deny movement from one role to another. They are flexible and allow movement based on need and performance. That is a much better place to be.

Take a look at my blog.

This entry is titled, Think Small for Big Profits..
http://blogs.ittoolbox.com/pm/career/archives/002325.asp

Now I know that some will say that small business is less stable. However, I know MANY professionals who would work no where else. I am, of course, not referring to a startup or a ma and pa shop with 3 people. Small business accounts for the majority of jobs in the US and companies between 30-200 employees fall into this category.

It is a great place to make a career.

Hope this helps.

Matthew Moran
The IT Career Builder's Toolkit
http://www.cbtoolkit.com

Career Advice With Attitude:
http://blogs.ittoolbox.com/pm/career/

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