24 Oct 2010, 13:44
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John (1 post)

I’ve just started reading The Passionate Programmer and I have to say it is the best book on career planning/management I have ever read.

Anyways, I’ve recently changed jobs and whilst my new job is exciting and a step up in terms of role and responsibility, I feel like there is no one in my team who I can really learn from. Basically my manager (the PM) seems to be way out of his depth - no project plan, no list of risks, no project status reports to upper management - and while I am doing my best to find all the things we have missed before our go live deadline I’m worried that I have not found everything and that this job will ultimately damage my (what I believe so far is good) reputation. I don’t want to sound like I’m complaining, or just whinging because I think I could do my boss’s job better (as it warns about in the book); I think there is a difference between someone who is obviously incompetent in their current role and someone who is competent but you disagree with how they are going about a task.

Before I took the job I had an offer from another firm who when I turned them down said to give them a call if things are not working out. The other firm is probably a more solid career move, with more chances for horizontal movement, but the work is less exciting (think maintenance vs. greenfields project) and perhaps won’t give me the same level of experience as my current one.

Any thoughts on if I should pick up the phone and call the other firm? The author suggests you need to take calculated risks in your career to be remarkable - but how much of a risk is too much?

10 Jan 2015, 00:13
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Heinz (1 post)

Hey John,

I am in a similar situation as you were. I have been in my first job for 3.5 years. For the first 3 years I was doing alot of maintenance work. After alot of nagging I was able to move on to the greenfield projects, therefore im doing much more coding and learning new technologies/techniques then before. But the overall approach is quite bad and poor management, although it is getting better. Due to the domain knowledge I gained during maintenance work (team was very small then), I am part of the greenfield development team, but focusing on the business aspects instead of doing proper development. The team is also growing massively…. I am in a situation where I can either look to another team with more or less the same role as my current one but in a new company, where the team is very small and therefore alot of maintenance will be required… but I think I will able to contribute to development instead of just making quick hacky fixes. Or hope for the best here as things are getting better and stick with having some greenfield development.

Was the job you were currently working in the one which had more greenfield? It would be nice to hear from your experience as you posted back in 2010.

What did you end up doing in the end?

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