Career Progression vs. Just Moving Project to Project

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If you want to grow your software skills, what’s the path?  The software industry at large does not have the same level of support for career progression as other careers such as lawyers, doctors or accountants.  In Professional Software Development: Shorter Schedules, Higher Quality Products, More Successful Projects, Enhanced Careers , Steve McConnell writes about the absence of career progression for software workers.

Our Software Industry Lacks Structured Improvement
McConnell writes that the software industry at large does not have the same structured improvement that some other professions have:

Private industry is not supporting effective career development either.  Rather than experiencing a career progression, most software workers simply move from one project to the next without any structured improvement of their skills.  Few technology companies even try to offer career support for their software workers and the software industry at large has nothing comparable to the career progression a physician would receive in a medical practice, an attorney would receive in a law practice, or an accountant would receive in an accounting practice.

Essentially, software workers pick up their skills as they move from project to project rather than following a structured path for growth.

Key Take Aways
Here’s my key take aways:

  • The software industry at large does not have the same structured improvement that some other professions have.
  • Many software workers pick up their skills randomly from project to project.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. I think Corey Haines has hit the nail on the head:

    1) Pick a line of work

    2) Wake up one morning and call yourself a crasftman in that line of work

    3) Don’t proceed quietly, honing your craft every day to the satisfaction of what you claim to truly be interested in, rather (see #3)

    3) Begin travelling around and meeting with others who want to hear you pontificate. Once they have been in your presence, call them crafstmen too. (It gets better, see #4)

    4) Pontificate to everyone by blogging about the pontificating you’ve done with the person you just crowned as crasfman.

    Brilliant!

    The best thing is this… let’s start doing this in other areas of science/business/arts/technology.

    Maybe for Doctors? Carpenters? Architects? Firemen? Astronauts?

    Maybe people on all of these fields do not really need to contribute other than travelling to other people’s houses, pontificating, then granting them the title of crafstman as well.

    Awesome… I am healed and enlightened by Corey Haines.

  2. […] Shaping Software Blog Archive Career Progression vs Just Posted by root 13 minutes ago (http://shapingsoftware.com) Nov 27 2008 rather than experiencing a career progression most software workers simply move add your comment below or trackback from your own site powered by wordpress log in entries rss comments rss arthemia Discuss  |  Bury |  News | Shaping Software Blog Archive Career Progression vs Just […]

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