As is the case with most blogs these days, I haven’t updated in awhile. I guess it comes with regularly updating my Facebook status and Flickr photo stream.
It’s definitely been a year of realization. Realization that I’ve grown up. Realization that I’ve got a mortgage, full-time job, and RRSPs. Realization that I’m well into the working world and that terms like “going to the office” or “corporate whatever” apply to me.
I guess the last few months have been awakening. I’ve started to notice that the advice older people have given me over the years was better or more accurate than my inexperienced ass would have like to have accepted. If multiple experienced people are giving you the same advice, you should start accepting the fact that they could be right. They usually are.
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately pertaining to my career. At my current place of employment I’ve shot up the ranks quite quickly. In 3 years I went from a lowly NOC analyst getting yelled at by clients over production issues (and explaining to engineers how to repair them) all the way up to Sr. UNIX administrator. We pretty much eliminated (along with some excellent developers and despite poor planning) unplanned downtime. However much I did, I kept going because I figured that sooner or later I’d be rightly compensated for my hard work. I got a decent raise (that they should have repeated twice after) and a few token ones later. I’m still underpaid compared to my peers AND new hires (when they slowly get approved) in the neighbourhoods of 20%. A really upsetting incident happened when the company lost a large chunk of revenue (due mostly to factors beyond it’s control, I admit) and the new CEO took the hardball approach of cost cutting by announcing no bonuses or raises while we work through this “difficult time”. 2 months later, a VP that is directly responsible for revenue and openly took credit for our past growth is outright bragging about how he just bought a new porche with his bonus. This VP took the credit when we grew in a market that was easy money, and is deflecting blame in a market that is tough.
The things I’ve been told by a lot of people that have come and gone: -the best raises you’ll ever get are by moving to a new company -it’s a workers market (it is!) -you have no idea how much you’re worth -you owe it to yourself to at least see what’s out there
Not to long ago, I started to finally listen. Let’s just say I’m not worried about my current place of employment finding this post. What kept me there was a desire to learn, get experience, a bit of loyalty to the people I work directly with, and try to do the right thing. If they can’t or won’t stand up, then there’s little point standing behind them. I don’t work in an industry that has a union or strict labour laws to look out for me. I have to look out for me. And the thing is I can. And from this point on I will work as hard for a company that works as hard for me. I’ll be as loyal to them as they are to me. I’ll go the extra mile for them if they do it for me. And as I’ve recently found out, there are plenty of companies willing to do just that.