In reading Dwight’s post: Academe’s Low Ceilings : Managing Your IT Career, this line got me thinking.
With limited supply and ample demand, there are limited slots for advancement. You either need to get one of them or try another approach. (The Career Ladder need not be vertical.
As a young professional I found myself looking toward the future – when I would be the decision maker, when I would have folks to carry out my ideas, etc.. And I worked hard to get the opportunities to prove I deserved such opportunity and authority. Through trying to prove myself I did get the opportunity but wonder if I went about it slightly wrong. Perhaps instead of viewing my career success/failure based on the opportunities to move up the organizational ladder I wonder if it would have served me and the institution better if I viewed success/failure through a growth perspective?
What I mean by that is shifting the lotus of career growth/advancement from new positions with greater responsibility and authority to one where growth is demonstrated in the variety of tools/skills I can provide the institution. Or to put it simply, am I a better <insert job title here> today than I was yesterday? When I reflect on the past year, I think I have been approaching my current work from this perspective and life seems a bit better. I am enjoying the challenges of the day and more likely to see the bumps in the road as opportunities for good service and creativity instead of annoyances that are keeping me from doing the next big thing.
In the end, I think that I can find ways to be satisfied with my current situation for quite sometime as long as I continue to find opportunity to grow and add skills to my tool kit. I am sure that larger tool kit will come in handy no matter what the future holds.