I had the privilege of joining the Packet Pushers again recently to discuss the hype-train surrounding the alleged future death of the Network Engineer and rise of the omnipotent Network Programmer. We recorded this a few weeks back and I’ve been pondering on what to add to the conversation ever since. I’ve now decided that I have nothing to add. This was a great discussion. Have a listen!
A few months ago I had a very tough choice to make. I was happy with my job at Apogee Telecom. Great employer, good benefits, awesome environment, and a dependable partner at my site. Work was fun. I had been getting recruiter calls, but I had been with Apogee for about 3 months and I couldn’t see myself going anywhere else for quite awhile. Apogee is a great company. As a matter of fact go check them out at http://www.apogee.us. They have constant job postings and you will love them.
One normal day I picked up a call from Kristin Miller at Corus 360. I normally would let recruiting calls go to voicemail, but I like the folks at Corus 360, so I picked up the call thinking it would be just a casual “no thank you, work is great. How are things on your side?” kind of chat. That was the plan. Hey, Steve. how’s it going. Good, how about yourself? Oh, I’m doing well. Hey, I know you aren’t really looking, but I have a position for net engineer at Dingleboppits Hospital I thought I could tell you about. No, I’m happy where I…wait…did you say Dingleboppits? Yep, that’s the one. Long story short I told her she could send my resume over. And yes, *spoiler* Dingleboppits is a metaphor for NAME WITHHELD FOR SECURITY even though it wouldn’t be hard to figure out who I work for.
Sidestory, I was laid off in summer of 2016 in a massive workforce cut. The very first place I applied to was Dingleboppits Hospital. Some people have Google, Microsoft, the NSA; they can have them. I wanted to work for Dingleboppits. For a couple years I had been struggling with whether I wanted to go into big data, or ISP, or healthcare, but I had firmed up towards the latter over time. So then why did I want to be at that specific hospital? Well, my daughter was born at Dingleboppits, and both of my grandparents and even my wife had surgery there. During all of that stuff every nurse, doctor, tech, and maintenance worker I saw seemed to have a smile on their face. Further, I had worked, outside of IT, for one of their competitors during college. During that time I watched nurse after nurse leave for the promised land that is Dingleboppits. Part personal pride and part grass-is-greener, but that’s why I wanted to be part of their team. Unfortunately, this time around, I didn’t hear back from them, so a couple months later I was working for Apogee.
The next time around, when Kristin reached out to them, they must have liked what they saw, because two months later I stepped into my new cube at Dingleboppits.
But the decision to stay or go was hard; one of the most stressful choices I have ever made. I was already happy with my job and I really hate leaving an employer right after they spun down their employment search. So did my best to weight the options. Apogee: great company, good team, enjoyed my work, and room to grow. Dingleboppits: great company, really enjoyed meeting the team, should enjoy my work, and room to grow. What is the right choice? Well, I can do this here, but the other lets me do this and they both do that but this one does that better although in a year the other may do that better. I was so stressed about it that I got sick and irritable for about a week. Then I stopped for split second to breathe and I realized that I was trying to be unemotional about a choice that would affect the course of my life. I was using near mathematical methods to make a decision that would affect the fulfillment I would feel for myself; that can’t be the right way. One moment my head was spinning and the next I was calm, collected, and the decision had already been made up for me. I was leaving. Not because of anything Apogee had done to make me want to leave, but because I simply wanted to be where I wanted to be.
I wasn’t unhappy before, but I am happier now. If you are struggling with a decision like my own, or just a decision in general, don’t forget to stop and breathe.
If you are looking for work in networking, definitely reach out to Apogee Telecom.