By pankajadl pankajadl Points: 40 | Level: Starter | Status: [Member]
Posted on: 10/5/2011 8:32:40 AM | Views: 3576 | Points: 30

I am in a situation where I am little confused on what should I do with my current job. Should I continue or should I move on.

I am a technical person and I enjoy being technical.

Until last year I was doing the job of a Project Lead which involved both technical and team management skills. Everything was good until I was sent to a client location like any other contractor to work on individual contributor assignment. This frustrated me and I decided to quit that job. I did a lot of hard work and explored all opportunities and I got 3 offers.

1. Was offered a Sr.Tech lead role in a <100 employees size company. I was happy to take up this until one of my friends said, that company is not very stable and hence I didnt take up this job

2. Got offer as a Lead Consultant in another company. This company was known to be a retirement company and I was all happy to take up this job becuase it gave me good opportunity to continue with my technical skills and also good package. The only problem with this was commuting. Being a female IT professional, I worried a bit about how to commute on my own and also the distance was about 30 kms from where I stayed. This is one big reason due which I didnt take up this job

3. Got offer as a manager (can call resource manager, people manager or product manager) in one of the product based companies. Everything looked good about this offer. Position, Package, distance and opportunities that were promised during the offer looked exciting. I took up this job.

It was the transition phase for the first 6 months. But later I realized that the job didnt involve the technical aspects that I was really promised. Also, I started feeling low on my technical skills as I was losing touch on a daily basis.

I am a Sharepoint person and did a lot of work on Sharepoint and also SSRS in my earlier jobs.

Also, there are lot of other issues that I am finding in this job now. I am given the role of a Program Manager/Delivery Manager in this company but without any powers. This has resulted in high expectations from management but the team is not seeing me as a Program Manager/Delivery Manager due to the fact that I am not officially introduced with this role to the team. I am finding it annoying to talk to the team and get involved in the project.

Due to all these issues I am now thinking of quitting this job. But I am worried about the number of job changes in my resume. This may turn out to be negative for my career. It has been exactly 1 year and 3 months since I took up my current job.

Please advice in terms of what are the next steps I can take to control this situation.

Thanks a lot for reading this big question!!

Sainath's Advice on Saturday, October 08, 2011 :

It is very clear that right now you are very confused. Firstly, my simple advice is that you should always take up a job which you like to do, rest everything is secondary. You can only excel in something if you like doing it. And once you reach a level of excellence in a certain area, you are bound to do well financially. People who excel in their roles are hard to find, so you do not risk losing your job even in a recession.

Moreover, on an average you will spend about 9 hours in your office, which is more than 1/3rd of your time every day. If you don't like your job you are bound to become emotionally unhealthy and eventually this will have an impact on physical health as well.

Firstly, did you speak to your original employers when they sent you to a client location. Did you explore all your options in that job - obviously, from what you have mentioned they must have been well aware of your technical skills. If yes, they may have listened to you considering the same. I hope you chose to change jobs only after  exploring this option.

As your heart is in doing technical work, you should never take up managerial roles. Managerial roles are meant for people who like to take on additional responsibility in a broad sense. Moreover, you have landed in the classic "responsibility without authority" kind of situation. Typically, top management will give you a big title and no power associated with the same and still expect you to produce results. It's like being a fang-less serpent, you can only hiss, you can't bite as the fangs don't exist. This is a very frustrating kind of role even for persons who like managerial responsibilities.

It is his life and he has to decide what he wants to become. Just as I got freedom from my parents, I believe Arjun should also do things in life that he wants to do and he is passionate about. If you are passionate about something then you don't feel the workload, but if you feel the burden of something then you realise it is not your passion and you must look at something else. So I just want to make sure that whatever his passion is I will provide him the necessary guidance and help to achieve it,
- Sachin Tendulkar saying he won't burden his son Arjun when it comes to choosing his career

As it is only 1 year since you have made the switch, all is not lost. With a little amount of planning, effort and simple, sensible steps you should be able to get out of this situation. You need to start targeting technical roles once again. Though 1 year is a short span of time, if you are really good technically people will not hesitate to hire you. But make the choice carefully, do not just be in a hurry to get out of a situation.

Also, there is nothing such as a perfect job. If you end up doing work which you like along with some other inconveniences I think it is okay. The tragedy of the IT space is the high volume of opportunity available for talented persons which kind of leads us to think that opportunity grows on trees.

In any case, I think you should return back to technical roles asap.

Flow is  defined as the experience of a person when he is totally focussed and absorbed in the task such that the person and the task become inextricably fused with each other.The mind then takes on a magical  world of its own and all other dimensions like time,hunger, pain and the immediate surrounding become irrelevant and unimportant.
    - Henry Toi in "Habits of Success"

If you are not experiencing "flow" in your work, trust me, the work is not suited for you.Flow is the most important thing, in my opinion.

Sainath S,

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