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How much creativity do you have in your job?

By RobRoyNJ ·
I'll be honest, I love my job and I can't imagine working in any other field. I've had my ups and downs of course but overall, I've been upset by situations (like my company transferring a lot of our infrastructure to a outside "services" company and having lots of my peers move to another company while still working down the hall from me) and not what I do.

I'm always surprised by how many threads here are focused on leaving this field. I've been thinking about it a lot and I guess the thing that would make me leave is if I was suddenly put in a postion where I wasn't problem solving. I took apart radios before I even knew about computers (I'm an old fart.) If I wasnt' doing this I'd probably be fixing old cars or something like that. I'm wondering if the lack of creativity is what is making so many people unhappy with their job.

SO my question is, do you have the freedom to be creative in your work? Maybe not what you do but how you do it. Thoughts?

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Just one factor

by amcol In reply to How much creativity do yo ...

Everyone has the opportunity to be creative in their jobs, the problem is that most folks don't realize it. We allow ourselves to become constrained by politics, bosses, procedures, bureaucracy, and a myriad of other life sucking factors. The key prerequisite to being creative is having a backbone...whether you work in an open environment or a stifling one you have to have be able to muster up enough initiative to show how creative you can be.

Certainly there are those situations where creativity is frowned upon but that doesn't mean you have to accept that status quo. That's where the backbone part comes in.

However, the larger issue is your point about leaving the field. Anyone who leaves IT because they don't feel they're able to be creative in their job is kidding themselves. The factors that stifle creativity have nothing to do with IT...they're present in every company, in every industry, in every situation.

I still maintain the biggest reason folks leave IT is unrealistic expectations. You enter the field thinking you know what it's all about, how far you can go, all the things you can do, the toys you can play with, the value you can add, on and on and on. Then reality hits and you find real life doesn't match your perceptions. The solution? Change careers.

Think you'll find anything different once you've done so? Probably not. Is any of this IT specific? Not on your life. Are there in fact good reasons to leave IT? Sure, just like in any profession, but most folks don't get it. The idea is not to run away from something, true happiness can only be achieved when you have a realistic and achievable idea at to what you're running toward.

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Troubleshooting is not what I call creative work

by DC Guy In reply to How much creativity do yo ...

I enjoyed finding bugs in other people's code when I was younger, but now I want to look at the "big picture." Devising new project management strategies that reduce the number of bugs in production systems in the first place, now that is creative.

Similarly, I used to get a kick out of rebuilding carburetors. Now if I think about my car at all I consider it an appliance like my toaster. I just want it to transport me to the meeting in which I can participate in the creation of new strategies.

But if you enjoy fixing software, more power to you! Until everyone adopts some more creative management strategies, there will be plenty of bugs to fix.

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Not thinking about troubleshooting as much as improving

by RobRoyNJ In reply to Troubleshooting is not wh ...

I grew up when the average kid could learn a bit about a car and then make it substantially more responsive, fast, etc. That is what I love about my job now. I'll agree, replacing 100s of fried motherboards is no fun. But there are all sorts of challenges that can be handled creatively and create an impact.

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by jkameleon In reply to How much creativity do yo ...

I'm creative at home, for hobby, never at work. The purpose of work is to make money to pay the bills and so on, not to unleash creativity.

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by Tony Hopkinson In reply to How much creativity do yo ...

Otherwise what's the point, might as well go on welfare or pack things in a factory.
I'm always looking for better ways of doing everything, from coding to commuting. I'd like more freedom, who wouldn't. The way to get it is to learn waht sort of ideas you can sell, and to quickly identify ideas which will never work.

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