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Posted Friday, April 19, 2013 6:27 AM
SSCrazy

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"works well under pressure – our management team considers everything urgent and is going to micro-manage you daily."

and the DBA team and developers and network people combined


Steve Jimmo
Sr DBA
“If we ever forget that we are One Nation Under God, then we will be a Nation gone under." - Ronald Reagan
Post #1444347
Posted Friday, April 19, 2013 6:55 AM
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patrickmcginnis59 10839 (4/18/2013)
djackson 22568 (4/18/2013)
patrickmcginnis59 10839 (4/18/2013)
Eric M Russell (4/18/2013)
An IT guy who can't perform under pressure is next to useless, even if he's smart.

I have to admit, I don't like to work under pressure. What sort of situations would you consider to be a "pressure" generating duty?


I can't imagine working like that. Pressure is a daily occurrence where I work, and always has been. Sometimes it is excessive, usually due to senior management going too long without adapting to new realities. Some days I have multiple "critical" systems go down at the same time.
Well is it a pressure situation? I've been in that situation, what the heck else can you do but work on the problem? If you've got a pretty good team going, everyone searches for solutions. I just had one situation where I helped fix a problem with a switch, we were ABSOLUTELY shut down, and I helped with syntax for some router filtering, and for that matter, I'm not even normally involved with networking since I normally function as the department DBA. If I had read the docs "faster" because I was "under pressure" then I'm certain that I would subsequently be less effective.

Now I've made a few mistakes that put me "under pressure," but I DON'T ENJOY MAKING MISTAKES AND DO MY BEST TO AVOID THEM. But really, what can you do with flat out errors in the first place? Errors have consequences after all.

It could be the case that these "pressure" situations are in reality disfunctional work environments, and I do have to admit as in my original post I don't like to work in those situations.

I guess I have to agree with your statement, but I don't want to say anything negative about my current employer. A fair comparison is that while most similar companies are, we are not bleeding money due to outstanding financial competence at the top. However one result of that is when compared to the same type and size organization, our staffing levels are between 1/2 and 1/4 of those other companies. So yes the pressure is due to an excessive work load. As a result of that pressure I am given the opportunity to work as a DBA, an analyst, an engineer, a project manager and a LOT of other responsibilities.

I can't stand being bored, so to me the trade off is OK.


Dave
Post #1444363
Posted Friday, April 19, 2013 7:42 AM


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Steve Jones - SSC Editor (4/18/2013)
patrickmcginnis59 10839 (4/18/2013)
Eric M Russell (4/18/2013)
An IT guy who can't perform under pressure is next to useless, even if he's smart.

I have to admit, I don't like to work under pressure. What sort of situations would you consider to be a "pressure" generating duty?


I don't mind pressure situations, where something must be done quickly with lots of people asking/watching. However some people don't handle those well. I'm not sure I'd classify them as useless. They wouldn't be good in those situations, but if those aren't a daily occurrence, or they don't require everyone's help, there are plenty of uses for people that don't work well under pressure.

I would agree that someone that lies about their schooling, projects, or something specific should be let go. However I think those situations are few and far between. Often someone exaggerates their contribution. Trying to pin that down specifically can be hard, since exaggeration is a subjective thing.

It is subjective. Each job comes with it's own daily routine, and the frequency and type of pressure situations vary. Therefore each employer has their own expectation of what it means to work under pressure.
A guy could be perceived as useless to one employer who expects him to be on call 24x7 to put out fires in the production system, but the same guy could perform exceptionally well for another employer whose expectation of working under pressure is simply completing a project according to spec within a tight deadline. So that can be very subjective too.
That's why "at-will" employment makes so much sense, especially in the IT industry. It's hard to predict how someone will fit in or perform within a specific position in the long run.
Post #1444399
Posted Friday, April 19, 2013 10:28 AM


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I was once talking to a buddy of mine who did a tour in Vietnam and he was telling me about what that was like. He said that Army life in Vietnam "was 90% complete boredom and routine, and 10% stark terror." I then replied smiling "You would probably make a good DBA...."

"Technology is a weird thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ..."
Post #1444508
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