That is the question isn’t it. One of the single most difficult professional decisions anyone will make is, do I stay comfortable as a master code slinger, or do I step into the world of management?
For me it always seems to be the other way around. I never got into hard-core programming until I was a one man shop or in a managerial/lead role. And I truly love to write software applications, I find it to be such a rewarding activity. Specially when others are using, and better yet, making money using the software you have developed.
Though time and time again I am pulled to lead instead of producer. Maybe I am just slow and sucky and nobody has the heart to tell me? It’s possible, sure.
Fact is, I am there again at my current job and this time I am really, really OK with it. I am managing Information Systems again, which I seem to always have a bear of a time with aystem admin’s ( I think it’s because I spent 8 years as one myself). So that isn’t the highlight here, but a necessity of the corporation. What I am heading up is Information Security, and that has me really charged up. I have always worked with security, at both a technical and managerial level. It is a really important step in my corporation’s life and I am going to bring them to that level while at the same time, bring myself up a few levels too. It is exciting, scary, overwhelming and challenging. What else can I ask for out of job?
I have made the hard and firm decision to obtain my CISSP certification. My goal is to sit for it in October; kind of a birthday gift to myself. I have looked at this certification for years and shied away from it. Not this time, I will complete it. I know at least three of our clients have asked if we have a CISSP certified member on staff in the last year. It’s a logical supported next step, and having support from senior management is always a big plus.
Now here is the other exciting side to this. I will not be coding much at all at work. Why is this exciting to me? Simple, I will not be tired of coding and I can work on my own projects! There is nothing I like better than coding stuff I want to. I would guess most core developers think this way. I have lent a hand to some open source project and developed some of my own crazy stuff. My current one, which I personally find very useful is BD File Hash. A Windows Forms base file hashing and hash compare tool. Hey someday ask me what the BD stands for.
So as you can see I am hitting the best of both worlds here. I am greatly improving my professional aptitude and still able to do the things I really enjoy doing. On top of it, I work two miles from my house, so I am not a complete stranger to my family.
Don’t worry, I”ll always remain your IT Slug!