A colleague recently asked me, "How should I ensure that my work and my contributions get visibility within the company? What new skills do I need to move ahead?" Put another way, how can one stand out and advance his or her career in an increasingly competitive economy?
I sat in an internal project meeting, frustrated at the lack of progress on a significant company initiative. Across the table was our head of application engineering, explaining why the project was behind schedule. Sure, they had worked on it here and there, but there were missing deadlines and had no plan to get back on track.
"Can you at least give me a new date when it will be ready?" I asked. "Nope, sorry," he said. "We'll get to it when we can." Then he said something I'll never forget. "You see, it's not about actually completing things, it's about showing we're making progress." My jaw hit the floor. Really?
As a long-time manager of IT teams (and many years spent as a software engineer), I have heard many misconceptions about us that cause all sorts of problems in organizations. Here are my top 5 myths, along with suggestions for how to combat these misconceptions and become an IT Partner Rockstar.
There I sat in my office, staring at my computer. 50 unread messages. A half-written PowerPoint. A calendar booked solid from 8:30-5:00 with 15 minutes for lunch.
THIS is what I signed up for? What was I thinking? By all measures, I should have felt great. I made it. Senior management. Nice office, great salary and benefits, respect. But instead, I felt useless and listless. Was this what I'd be doing for the next twenty years of my career?