The Second Career

  • Comments posted to this topic are about the item The Second Career

    Best wishes,
    Phil Factor
    Simple Talk

  • I came from the video game industry and worked in marketing before I took on a data role. I did have the added benefit of video game development still being software development though, and the types of games we made were online games, which are just big databases anyways. It's obviously a better transition than say being a cop, a cook, and so on. But still, it felt like a 180 to me because of how and what I was doing the video game industry is yesterday compared to what I'm doing today.

  • I've had two other careers, maybe more, before becoming a data person

    Best wishes,
    Phil Factor
    Simple Talk

  • I had another career, in accountancy before becoming a BI Dev. But like in the article, I know some BI used to be in the Army, professional rugby and even a drug dealer and holigan West Ham suporter during his spare time. What have all this diverse people in commun is the problem solving ability and the taste for power. Power over data mostly.

  • Whilst I am a single career developer, including all through college and university, I am also an interviewer who doesn't look for that same single focus over the long term. For one, I recognise that I have been very fortunate in choosing a career that has been good for me (and hopefully me being good for it too) but not everyone is as lucky.

    It has taken me hard work but what I want to highlight is that many people put in hard work and still find themselves in the wrong career. This is not a bad thing unless they stay there. It has already been mentioned how valuable that experience can be. We should be judging not only by attributes and skills but also by potential. Candidates must also understand the balance between employer and employee. If you have potential you may have to start in a junior position but you may progress quickly. This does not always happen. Once whilst working on a project that was under resource strain (read they didn't expand the project to the appropriate size on time) we were offered a candidate for a senior freelance developer/designer that had no formal education nor training and less than a year previous was a kitchen/bathroom tiler. He could have been a great asset but he did not have the breadth and depth of experience for that role. If it was for a permanent junior or, possibly, intermediate role then I would have seriously considered him for interview.

    Of course, some people change careers for other reasons such as a career coming to a natural end (e.g. sports, services, etc.) or the end of success or never achieving it (e.g. musician, artist or sport again).

    Gaz

    -- Stop your grinnin' and drop your linen...they're everywhere!!!

  • Myself, I came up from the operations side of the fence.
    My initial college education was in architectural drafting, I took a job with a small mail-order computer parts company in support / sales (which also translated to doing some of the in-office computer support,) moved to a new job again doing computer support (on-site at customers, over-the-phone, and in-office) which gradually moved towards being given some leeway in improving the companies infrastructure.
    Through all of that I kept puttering with PCs at home, when the company began re-selling a product with a SQL back end (SQL2000!) I was tapped to handle that side of things.  Had some hard learning on the way (set up replication without really knowing what I was doing against a production accounting database, thankfully little damage was done and we removed the replication, this one also taught me to test things out on sandboxes before trying them for real.)  Since then I've moved to my current employer as an operations DBA, so I no longer get to play with networking or storage hardware (at work...)

    I enjoy the work, which is perhaps the most important thing.  While I could likely design a database, I don't know that I'd want to use it as a production database, at least not with my current skills.  Give me a couple years and we'll talk again...

  • Musician, Bank Teller, Bookkeeper, Loan Collector, PR Rep,Glorified Security Guard (while I finished by Bachelor’s), Real Estate Sales(spectacular failure), Tech Support (medical software, DOS app then Windows),  T-SQL (largely report writing).

  • Many careers develop partly by accident and/or opportunity.  But myself, like many others got here because of the need in our organization for a particular skill. So someone has to jump in and learn to swim (even now I find myself getting somewhat more involved in VOIP and VM out of necessity). I still miss some of my early time in computer activities involved of assembly language programing directly at the microprocessor level.

    And in one of my side branches, I developed and built a component for the Phoenix Mars lander (I guess that's my favorite lifetime achievement).

    ...

    -- FORTRAN manual for Xerox Computers --

  • jay-h - Monday, February 13, 2017 8:55 AM

    Many careers develop partly by accident and/or opportunity.  But myself, like many others got here because of the need in our organization for a particular skill. So someone has to jump in and learn to swim (even now I find myself getting somewhat more involved in VOIP and VM out of necessity). I still miss some of my early time in computer activities involved of assembly language programing directly at the microprocessor level.

    And in one of my side branches, I developed and built a component for the Phoenix Mars lander (I guess that's my favorite lifetime achievement).

    It must be gratifying to think that something you designed, or built with your hands, is now on the planet Mars.

    "Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Instead, seek what they sought." - Matsuo Basho

  • Eric M Russell - Monday, February 13, 2017 10:03 AM

    jay-h - Monday, February 13, 2017 8:55 AM

    Many careers develop partly by accident and/or opportunity.  But myself, like many others got here because of the need in our organization for a particular skill. So someone has to jump in and learn to swim (even now I find myself getting somewhat more involved in VOIP and VM out of necessity). I still miss some of my early time in computer activities involved of assembly language programing directly at the microprocessor level.

    And in one of my side branches, I developed and built a component for the Phoenix Mars lander (I guess that's my favorite lifetime achievement).

    It must be gratifying to think that something you designed, or built with your hands, is now on the planet Mars.

    If some future life form on Mars is nearsighted with thinning hair... my DNA made the trip.

    ...

    -- FORTRAN manual for Xerox Computers --

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