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No longer passionate about the job

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by ITMatt, Apr 22, 2008.

  1. ITMatt

    ITMatt Bit Poster

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    Hey all,

    It's been a while since I've posted, though I do keep popping by once in a while.

    I think this post is more of a cry for help and advice, than anything else.

    I seem to have lost all passion for the job. It a good role (Desktop/Systems Engineer), working for a highly respected and secure investment bank that provides a good salary, pension and education opportunities, yet for some reason, it just doesn't feel right.

    I've been in this role for 9 months now (been in IT since leaving school - 6 years). Don't get me wrong, I know how greatful I should be, and I certainly won't be handing in my notice in a rush. It's just that I feel so insignificant, that what I do means nothing, that there is nothing particular special I can advance to. I know that I get bored quickly, and I like to think that's because I'm a fast learner. I enjoy learning new things, traveling and making a difference, but I just don't get that here.

    Does anyone else feel the same way?
    Is this a normal feeling?
    How do you overcome these feelings?

    I'm hoping we can start a general discussion and see were it goes.

    Matt
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), A+, N+
    WIP: MCP
  2. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    What you're experiencing is exactly why I always work for small companies. I get my hands into a lot more things, I get more of a say in what goes on, and my duties vary widely enough that I'm not doing the same thing day after day, after day.

    I don't think I could take working in a large environment where I'm just a number at a desk with a narrowly defined role. I'd hate it with a passion as soon as I became comfortable in my position. I have to be learning and expanding as I go or I'm bored stiff and lose all desire to go to work.

    I would far rather be in a little over my head than just treading water watching the days go by. That's like living death to me.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCDBA, CCNA, A+
    WIP: LPIC 1
  3. simongrahamuk
    Honorary Member

    simongrahamuk Hmmmmmmm?

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    I think that it is normal to feel that way Matt. I know that I have days when I simply feel overwhelmed with what I have to do and want to go the opposite way to you, back to a simpler role.

    What you have to think about is not that you are insignificant, but that you are the public face of IT, In desktop Support you are the person who the customers get to see. How you interact with them helps to shape their view of the IT department. So your role is very significant.

    You say that there is no where you can advance to, but where do you want to advance to?
     
  4. ITMatt

    ITMatt Bit Poster

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    I don't really know where I want to advance to - all the roles on the next step and above seem to be desk bound. I always thought Network Engineer, but even this is becoming automated and easy to administer from a desk, and the only practical parts to the job are minor and rarely needed. Another problem is the immense competition for these roles - there are kids coming out of college with CCNA's now (met two yesterday).

    I'm an active and practical person - unfortunately, it would appear that IT is heading away from that.

    Do you have any suggestions for someone like me?

    I'm an open minded person who's willing to accept others advice and opinions (with research, of course :D)
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), A+, N+
    WIP: MCP
  5. simongrahamuk
    Honorary Member

    simongrahamuk Hmmmmmmm?

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    It seems to me that you are like freddy in that the big corporate world does not suit you. moving to a smaller organisation may be a good step, as the smaller the organisation the more you are expected to know and the greater your skill sets get. (also more running around and getting your hands dirty).
     
  6. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

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    It sounds like moving to a smaller IT company might be for you mate. I moved to a smaller company 3 years ago and it has definitely helped me progress my IT skills based on the amount of different networks I have had to work on.

    However on the other hand I am being worked into the ground just now as there just isn’t the support in a smaller company when you are working on some projects. Also I have had to finish off some network installations well into the night and then go to another site the next day to start the next one. It has to be that way as time is tight and running over can cost £££.

    Other guys I have worked with have left as they didn’t like the pressure side of the job. Basically if they couldn’t figure something out during an installation they would just phone the MD and ask for his help, I know everyone needs help sometimes but it got to the stage where the MD should have just done the install himself due to the amount of time he spent on the phone talking peeps through how to install a DC or whatever.

    Anyways this post has turned into a rant but if you want a challenge then try and get into small IT company and you will definitely not be bored! :biggrin
     
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Exchange 2007\2010
  7. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Freddy's viewpoint is similar to mine. I prefer being a vital part of a small company than a cog-in-the-wheel of a large company.

    I disagree - a network administrator's job is not minor, nor is everything automated. An automated system can't give advice to the IT manager or design a network or... configure the automation in the first place. I ran the network for a 450+ user healthcare company largely by myself... and I *never* had a lack of work.

    All that said, network administration is largely a desk-bound role. But what did you expect? It's always been such. If you weren't sitting at your desk, you were travelling out to a remote site (again, sitting on your butt) to lay hands on a device. So there wasn't much "activity" back in the "olde days", either... we simply don't have to travel as much now.

    Kids coming out of college with CCNAs... and no experience. With all of the CCNA advice you've seen us give on here... what do you think that CCNA and degree are gonna do for those kids? Give them an express ticket to Networkadministratorville? Nope. They'll likely advance quickly because of their knowledge, but currently, you hold the edge with your experience.

    If you wanted an active job... you picked the wrong field, mate! :) Get that fix in your hobby life - play sports or something. You won't find activity in IT. Why do ya think a bunch of us are overweight? :biggrin There's a reason... sittin' on my butt, Coke/coffee in hand. :morebeer
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  8. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

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    I dunno, moving a UPS can be better than going to the gym. :biggrin

    Then I need to take a few days off to recover... :brancard
     
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Exchange 2007\2010
  9. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Moving it a few inches doesn't count. :twisted: heeheehee! :biggrin
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  10. The_Geek

    The_Geek Megabyte Poster

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    Exactly right. We were just acquired by a L A R G E electronics corporation, and I went from 1/250 to 1/53000. :D Needless to say I have started keeping my resume on my USB drive.
     
    Certifications: CompTIA and Micro$oft
    WIP: PDI+
  11. Crito

    Crito Banned

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    If you're merely bored then you're better off that most IMHO. Better bored than used, abused and bad-mouthed for the privilege. At my last gig I was working seven days a week, staying up until midnight, getting up at 6AM, and they were still talking sh1t about me day in and day out. :x

    Have to admit I kind of enjoyed leaving them hanging during the easter holiday they were expecting me to work. :oops:
     
    Certifications: A few
    WIP: none
  12. ITMatt

    ITMatt Bit Poster

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    BosonMichael, good post, but two things I'd like to highlight:

    First, when I mentioned active and practical, I was talking about the good old times of having a soldering iron ready and diagnosing right down to component level. Not the case anymore, rip out the old and stick in the new one. It's the same with 90% of the equipment we use in IT. And yes, I remember the technician role being far more physical than it is now, meeting client, installing new equipment, fixing components, etc. Again, not the case these days, it can now be done from your desk with a piece of software.

    Second, we all know that kids with CCNA's and MCSE's and no experience are shooting themselves in the foot. The only point I was trying to make was that the networking sector is "highly" competitive, simply because the majority of students want to be network admins/engineers when they leave school/college - it's a field that's only going to become even more competitive.

    Working for a smaller company sounds perfect for what I want - more responsibility, more pressures, hours to work, etc. I think it maybe time to polish up the old CV and start fishing, see what I can pick up.

    Thanks, guys
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), A+, N+
    WIP: MCP
  13. BosonMichael
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    If you want to do that, you can do that. But plain-old PC repair is an entry-level job these days. You can certainly choose to do so... but you won't advance. And that's OK for some people. Nothing wrong with that at all.

    What you remember of a technician being physical STILL EXISTS. You can't physically install new equipment without... bringing in the new equipment. How do you put a PC under a desk with a piece of software? :) Perhaps you've simply advanced to the point where you don't do the grunt work anymore. You CAN still do that, you know... :)

    So? I say, "Bring the competition on!" Nothing worng with that. They can compete with me all they want. Without the experience, THEY will be the ones who find it hard to compete with we who have experience... not the other way around, mate. :)
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  14. ITMatt

    ITMatt Bit Poster

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    You're right on both accounts, BM.

    From a recruiting point of view (for which I have experience in recruiting IT personnel at our company), I know how bothersome it is shifting through countless paper cert CVs. I know how easy it is to hire internally or by word-of-mouth, and this is where the problem lies, networking outside your own company. Its not the paper cert holders that I fear, its the fact that I now have to take on alternate methods of finding a suitable role, because they're clogging up the system.

    As for the practical/physical work side, I'm past the PC technician stage and know how lowly the job is seen (well, a monkey can be trained to do it these days - swap this, with this). I was thinking more along the lines of installing networking kit and advanced systems, but again, this is rare, and only when a company has to go alone with the upgrades.

    I'll find my true calling soon (hopefully) - perhaps it's management/consulting work I should be looking at?

    Thanks guys!
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), A+, N+
    WIP: MCP
  15. supag33k

    supag33k Kilobyte Poster

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    Hey I resemble that remark!! :twisted::twisted:

    I just play the FUD factor on anyone that would mess with me...hehehe

    Are bearding a manager a couple of years back for pron, and hoisting a couple of other managers by their petards [email get out of jail free no less..] ,and busting several marketing d0rklings for inappropriate web and email use :twisted: - I tend to get left alone.

    They can call foul names about me behind my back - but I dont give a rat's about that....
     
    Certifications: MCSE (NT4/2000/2003/Messaging), MCDBA
    WIP: CCNA, MCTS SQL, Exchange & Security stuff
  16. samsdad

    samsdad Bit Poster

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    M8 I cant advise you which way to go but i can tell you this....Try 35 years in the building trade working in all weather for not a lot of money for people who will drop you like a shot, get Arthritis from crawling around on concrete floors and climbing up and down ladders and then when you cant do it anymore cos it hurts too much try getting help to move into some other career like IT or anything else for that matter.

    Its a tough old world m8 so make the best of what you have but dont give up looking for something better, and when the chance comes take it.
     
    WIP: A+ and Househusband.
  17. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Even better that they're clogging up the system. You should be able to shine like a diamond among a bunch of rock. If everyone looked good, you'd be hard to notice. :wink:

    Meh, some people might look down on "lowly techs". I don't, because I realize how vital their job is. True, it's not that difficult to train someone how to do that job... which is why they don't get paid a bunch. And although I'm not all about the money, the lack of pay for PC techs does keep me from doing "plain old PC tech" work.

    Management would take you even farther from the physical aspect... but perhaps a change - any change - would do you good. Something to consider, though: what happens if/when you get bored of management? Could happen...

    Consulting is a mixed bag. It all depends on what you do and how you price yourself. I do work on the side for two eye doctors... so I get enough of the "PC Tech" side to keep me happy... but it's just extra spending money (and at present, it's going directly to my mission trip)... nothing that would keep food on the table. I likely could go full time into hourly consulting doing anything from tech work to network design and analysis... but I'd likely stress over having to dig up clients, something I don't enjoy in the least. But you may flourish doing something like that! :)
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  18. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

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    I think what was meant is to the average recruiter who just looks for buzzwords, you might not even get a look in, you might get kill filtered by 'No CCNA' for example, even if you have CCNA if it just puts you in a rather large pool of filtered by 'CCNA', your CV could still get lost. This is why I think certs no longer have as high a value, but you still need them because in essence having a career in IT often means being able to get past the hinderance of recruiters to even get to the interview stage...
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  19. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Don't settle for average; get a knowledgeable recruiter. :) Your career is worth it!
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  20. derkit

    derkit Gigabyte Poster

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    I'm feeling in a very same mood at the moment, I work in a very large company for a very large client and it really does feel like a small cog-in-the-machine.

    I'm hedging my bets on heading to my head office, hopefully for a system admin-style job, out of hope that it is different there - if not, I'll use the experience and time and then move to a small company - something else that I identified as possibly being something I'd enjoy.
     
    Certifications: MBCS, BSc(Hons), Cert(Maths), A+, Net+, MCDST, ITIL-F v3, MCSA
    WIP: 70-293

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