Sunday, September 11, 2011

Career Advice

I have a stock response for people who use the line "Do what you love!" as career advice.  Here it is:

<bleep>

Sorry, the internet seems to be censoring swear words today. Anyway, I hope you get the idea. First off it is a dicey proposition that whatever you love will be economically viable. For instance I love petting cats but cat sitting is not really that lucrative; I am sure my wife would be a little annoyed if I quit my job to go and pet cats.

But more that that, I have noticed that among the ASD crowd we love accumulating knowledge about something or somethings. Knowledge is great; I love knowledge... the money comes from the application of that knowledge. Just accumulating it is not as valuable. Sure you may carve a niche for yourself in a company as a go to person for a specific subject but that is an uncertain position.

One of my best positions was one where I was required to learn calculus, statistics, financial mathematics (really an extension of calculus and stats) and programming. Of course that was all in order for me to understand a system/series of programs that were poorly documented and understood. When I was done we had a baseline for another five years worth of work that I was involved in.

So my career advice to you is find a way to apply what you learn. You will enjoy the learning aspect of it and benefit from the security of being a subject matter expert on something your business values.

2 comments:

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