Author Topic: How to advance in the company? (advice)  (Read 1617 times)

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Offline маразм1

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How to advance in the company? (advice)
« on: June 26, 2008, 04:57:31 AM »
So I've been working at my current job for almost a year.  I feel like I'm not using all my skills -- I can do much better.  What do I do to advance and not be a coding monkey?  Even worse, I'm stuck writing SQL (database language), the dumbest and most uninteresting thing in programming.  The problem was that at an interview, I took 2 tests -- one database and another programming.  I scored record high on the database test, and because of that they put me in my current department.  But SQL was never my strength, as far as I thought, nor something I was interested in doing. 

I just feel that my department consisting of 4 people does not have any room for growth.  I am in application support, and there is no hierarchy, no "directors" no "VPs".  So what do I do? 

I am not really into dumb middle-management, I want to create, and lead other people.  I don't want to attend pointless meetings and talk to idiots all day as Project Managers do.  So does anybody have any advice in terms of phrasing that I want and can do something else where there is a possibility of growing, even as a professional?  Should I write an email? 

thanks,
d.

Offline (poco) Sforzando

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2008, 07:23:52 PM »
So I've been working at my current job for almost a year.  I feel like I'm not using all my skills -- I can do much better.  What do I do to advance and not be a coding monkey?  Even worse, I'm stuck writing SQL (database language), the dumbest and most uninteresting thing in programming.  The problem was that at an interview, I took 2 tests -- one database and another programming.  I scored record high on the database test, and because of that they put me in my current department.  But SQL was never my strength, as far as I thought, nor something I was interested in doing. 

I just feel that my department consisting of 4 people does not have any room for growth.  I am in application support, and there is no hierarchy, no "directors" no "VPs".  So what do I do? 

I am not really into dumb middle-management, I want to create, and lead other people.  I don't want to attend pointless meetings and talk to idiots all day as Project Managers do.  So does anybody have any advice in terms of phrasing that I want and can do something else where there is a possibility of growing, even as a professional?  Should I write an email? 

thanks,
d.

Don't send an e-mail or put anything in writing. It could come back to haunt you. You are nearing your one-year mark, and most likely you will have an annual review. That's the time to feel out the person evaluating you and to ask what chance for growth you have in the company. And that doesn't necessarily have to mean growth towards a managerial position, it can mean growth in terms of responsibility and workplace challenges.

But in terms of presenting yourself, the main thing to remember is that the people who hired you are interested in what you can do for them, not what they can do for you. So whatever goals you have, come prepared with a good case why you could do more for the company, and place your goals within a context of how you can best benefit the company and its plans, not yours. You have to be careful, too, not to sound like you're frustrated or angry. It's one thing to let all your feelings out on this forum; it's another to speak to your boss quite so candidly.
"I don't know what sforzando means, though it clearly means something."

greg

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2008, 07:29:24 PM »
You mean you learned all that C++ for nothing?

Offline маразм1

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2008, 05:40:37 AM »
well we have reviews, but not annual reviews, it comes every February...

And yes, all that C++ for nothing! 

scarpia

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2008, 08:00:31 AM »
well we have reviews, but not annual reviews, it comes every February...

Hard to see how a review that comes every February is not annual (unless it is every Feb 29).

Offline маразм1

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2008, 08:21:21 AM »
Hard to see how a review that comes every February is not annual (unless it is every Feb 29).


ha ha  I mean even though I've been with the company for a year, I have to wait for 7 more months for an annual review.

scarpia

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2008, 08:41:15 AM »
I am not really into dumb middle-management, I want to create, and lead other people.  I don't want to attend pointless meetings and talk to idiots all day as Project Managers do.  So does anybody have any advice in terms of phrasing that I want and can do something else where there is a possibility of growing, even as a professional?  Should I write an email?

Most people write code for money.  If you really want to write interesting things and don't consider salary the ultimate motivation you could consider moving towards scientific programming.  Biology is becoming more information based and programmers are often employed in bio-informatics oriented projects.   University research labs, government labs such as the NIH, and biotech firms are possible employers. 

mn dave

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2008, 09:35:18 AM »
Kiss plenty of corporate dupa.

Offline Szykneij

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #8 on: June 28, 2008, 05:54:46 AM »
Kiss plenty of corporate dupa.

Wow! That's the first time I've heard (seen) that word used since I was a kid!   :D
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Offline DavidRoss

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #9 on: June 28, 2008, 07:05:54 AM »
...the people who hired you are interested in what you can do for them, not what they can do for you. So whatever goals you have, come prepared with a good case why you could do more for the company, and place your goals within a context of how you can best benefit the company and its plans, not yours. You have to be careful, too, not to sound like you're frustrated or angry. It's one thing to let all your feelings out on this forum; it's another to speak to your boss quite so candidly.
Good advice. 

The best thing you can do, Marasmus, is to mature spiritually as a person and to outgrow your adolescent self-absorption--otherwise, the judgmental arrogance expressed in your original post will always handicap you professionally and in your life outside of work.  If you do not honestly understand that your role is to use your abilities to serve others--employers, family, community, or a cause greater than yourself--then your opportunities will always be limited, and not by others' inability to recognize your "innate superiority," but rather by your own myopic view of what life and work is about.  Instead of being resentful because you aren't getting what you think you deserve, you should cultivate gratitude for the blessings you have and throw yourself wholeheartedly into making the most of your opportunities to serve and be helpful.
"Maybe the problem most of you have ... is that you're not listening to Barbirolli." ~Sarge

"The problem with socialism is that sooner or later you run out of other people's money." ~Margaret Thatcher

greg

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #10 on: June 29, 2008, 06:24:08 AM »
Good advice. 
I think it's really good advice, too. You have to use psychology here- people don't really care much for anyone but themselves (generally, and that means all of us), so you just have to convince them that you're just offering to help them out. Makes sense, sf.

Good luck with this, marazm, I hope this doesn't happen to me- it looks like i'll be learning Java as well, and I hate Java (and love C++- even though it's nearly the same). Reading this, I'll have to remember to try to specifically mention at the beginning that I'd prefer to work using C++, if it ever came to a choice between the two.

DFO

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #11 on: June 29, 2008, 01:46:15 PM »
Best thing is to get rid of any interferences of
your promotions. If you don't know how to do
it, there was an old film with Michael Caine
(Sorry I don't remember the title), who would
teach you the method.

scarpia

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #12 on: June 29, 2008, 02:28:29 PM »
I think it's really good advice, too. You have to use psychology here- people don't really care much for anyone but themselves (generally, and that means all of us), so you just have to convince them that you're just offering to help them out. Makes sense, sf.

I guess it would never occur to you that doing something that is valuable to the company in return for your salary is the actual meaning of having a job, not some sort of scam.  If you maintain the attitude that it is your human right to have a fascinating job despite the fact that you do nothing to help the company you won't get anywhere, that much is certain.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2008, 02:30:24 PM by scarpia »

greg

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Re: How to advance in the company? (advice)
« Reply #13 on: June 29, 2008, 06:44:25 PM »
I guess it would never occur to you that doing something that is valuable to the company in return for your salary is the actual meaning of having a job, not some sort of scam.  If you maintain the attitude that it is your human right to have a fascinating job despite the fact that you do nothing to help the company you won't get anywhere, that much is certain.

Ummmmm i don't see how asking to be assigned to use another programming language (in his case, C++ instead of SQL) is something that doesn't help the company, if they need it. Don't take the concept too far- i don't know what devious thoughts you might be thinking  >:D

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