Random Acts of IT Project Management

Project Management for Information Technology

Don’t Try to Get a Job

Posted by iammarchhare on 2 April 2009

I got a pointer that Seth Godin was guest posting on another blog, so it was with considerable interest that I read his post on the What Would Day Say blog.  He argues don’t try to get a job.

There are a few philosophical reasons, of course, but one that really hits home is that the opportunity costs are the lowest they will ever be.

You know, it’s funny because just yesterday before reading it, I was talking to someone who started their own business.  He said he started when the economy wasn’t so hot either, although it certainly wasn’t at bad as it is now.  What he found is that you start out stronger because you have solid coworkers and solid clients.  If he had started prior to the Dot Com Bubble, then he easily could have been one of those who had the carpet yanked out from under them.

IT project managers are usually an independent lot anyhow.  We’ve had to endure higher executives who didn’t understand what we did or what value we added.  We’ve had to run against the stream occasionally when a team went dysfunctional and developed the herd mentality while running full speed towards the cliff.  We’ve been unpopular when we said, “You can have it quickly, or you can have it work.  Which do you want?”  Let’s face it: You cannot be a successful PM and be a pushover.

Many PMs are contractors already, I’ve noticed.  It probably has a lot to do with layoffs, either to Dot Com-type situations, outsourcing or just plain businesses going belly-up.  Perhaps it is easier to hang up a contractor shingle than deal with the full-time routine.

Someone not long ago stated something very wise, I thought.  “No job is stable.  We are employed at the whim of our employer, and they can let us go at any time for any reason.  Let’s face it, we are all contractors.  The days of doing 20 years somewhere and getting a gold watch is long gone.”

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4 Responses to “Don’t Try to Get a Job”

  1. glhoffman said

    No job is stable…classic and perfectly said.

  2. […] Fave @ Technorati « Don’t Try to Get a Job […]

  3. […] we are not managers!  We can no longer depend upon 20 years service and a gold watch at the end!  We are all contractors, even if we are working full time for a company.  We need to sharpen our skills to market ourselves for if/when we are faced with losing our […]

  4. […] building up emergency funds and paying down debt, after all.  Even if you have a full-time job, you really are a contractor in today’s economy.  You are hired “at will”, and PMs can be easy targets for layoffs.  People are lucky […]

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