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Old 08-26-2007, 12:32 PM   #81
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I have given my dream for advancements in the corporate world. I realized long ago the skills required to advance (influence management, communication, politics, all other soft skills) would require a complete shift of my values and personality. Life is short to care for money, fame, material success. No one will remember you once you leave this world.
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Old 08-26-2007, 01:24 PM   #82
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I have given my dream for advancements in the corporate world. I realized long ago the skills required to advance (influence management, communication, politics, all other soft skills) would require a complete shift of my values and personality. Life is short to care for money, fame, material success. No one will remember you once you leave this world.
Well, I would say that depends. I remember a lot of people who have left this world. Not only that, I have told my children about them, so that they will also likely remember them.

I also "remember" many people I have never met. People who did remarkable or socially helpful or very difficult things, or who created moving works of art, music or literature.

I remember many jazz and blues musicians that I saw once or more, and who are now dead. I won't ever forget them.

I remember interesting friends of my parents that I haven't seen in 60 years, and who are long dead, as well as many uncles, aunts, great uncles, cousins, former lovers- all dead or long lost to my social orbits.

I even remember Tom Watson, and for sure Andy Grove.

Ha
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Old 08-26-2007, 11:12 PM   #83
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Ha,
You are correct that a person will be remembered or put into history book if he/she made significant contributions to society, made important discoveries or inventions, played an important role in politics, led an army to victory, fought hunger, composed extraordinary music, committed atrocities, etc. You will also be remembered when you extend kindness and compassion to others.

My point, however, is to enjoy life or to do what you enjoy instead of worrying about advancements or fame. Some of the greatest people of all time did great things out of love or passion but not for fame.
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Old 08-27-2007, 04:09 AM   #84
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I have given my dream for advancements in the corporate world. I realized long ago the skills required to advance (influence management, communication, politics, all other soft skills) would require a complete shift of my values and personality. Life is short to care for money, fame, material success. No one will remember you once you leave this world.
I chuckled when I saw your comment about dream for advancement... I did not find your aspiration funny nor am I making fun of your comment.

What I found funny is that the dream (if realized) can often turn into a nightmare. Management jobs typically suck. Unrealistic expectations by someone above (peter principal) that does not have a clue. And left with doing the dirty work.

I made the transition to management to earn more money. Lower and middle management work is often not much fun. A lot of stress, extra work, the lower/middle manager does the dirty work, someone above takes the credit for any significant successes.

The other thing that occurred to me.

Skill Translation (think peter principal or in the worst case sociopathic tendencies):
  • influence management - espouse Bu!!$h!t (out of ignorance) or lie
  • communication - espouse Bu!!$h!t (out of ignorance) or lie
  • politics - espouse Bu!!$h!t (out of ignorance) or lie
  • all other soft skills - espouse Bu!!$h!t (out of ignorance) or lie
Forgive the jaded perspective.

Management is not the path to life fulfillment. However, it might provide a few more $ along the way.
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Old 08-27-2007, 06:40 AM   #85
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Glad to hear your perspective, Chinaco. I recently decided not to apply for an opening in management, because it pays the same as my present salary. I would get an impressive office instead of a cubicle, but that is the only advantage that I can tell. I had wanted that job for years as a step up to a higher salary, but due to my promotion that is no longer a motivation. Plus, I plan to ER in a couple of years and I really couldn't get much done in that time.

What you said confirms that I made the right decision. I don't want to put up with the B(*&S%$# and endless meetings!!
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Old 08-27-2007, 07:05 AM   #86
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Chinaco,

Thank you for your confirmation that management is not for me. I am in a situation similar to that of Want2retire -- that is, I am at the highest level as an engineer and planning to exit in a couple of years. The slightly higher compensation or possibly a bigger office is not worth it. It never cease to amaze me that most engineers that I know are pursuing an MBA than an advanced technical degree.

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Old 08-27-2007, 09:58 AM   #87
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Glad to hear your perspective, Chinaco. I recently decided not to apply for an opening in management, because it pays the same as my present salary. I would get an impressive office instead of a cubicle, but that is the only advantage that I can tell. I had wanted that job for years as a step up to a higher salary, but due to my promotion that is no longer a motivation. Plus, I plan to ER in a couple of years and I really couldn't get much done in that time.
I took a promotion to management in 2001. 3 years later, I took a demotion back to my old position. I absolutely hated management. I was caught between employees and upper management, having to force-feed ridiculous and absurd marching orders to the troops and somehow pretend I didn't think they were ridiculous as well. If I let on how stupid I thought they were, then the resulting morale problem was even worse.

The smartest thing I did was taking a demotion back into my old job. Cost me 3.5% of my gross. Cheap!! Fortunately, civil service allowed me to do this. I'm not sure it would be so easy in the private sector.

My dad took a promotion into management and hated it. Shortly after that, he had a fatal heart attack. I sometimes wonder if he would still be alive had he refused the promotion.

I hunkered down and designed bridges for a few more years, then transferred into seasonal construction to up my "high 3" average. Then I bailed. No regrets there!!
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Old 08-27-2007, 10:58 AM   #88
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The smartest thing I did was taking a demotion back into my old job. Cost me 3.5% of my gross. Cheap!! Fortunately, civil service allowed me to do this. I'm not sure it would be so easy in the private sector.
I have seen people made the transition from engineer to management and then back to engineer but at the same grade (or pay) level as they were in management.
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Old 08-27-2007, 01:52 PM   #89
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I chuckled when I saw your comment about dream for advancement... I did not find your aspiration funny nor am I making fun of your comment.

What I found funny is that the dream (if realized) can often turn into a nightmare. Management jobs typically suck. Unrealistic expectations by someone above (peter principal) that does not have a clue. And left with doing the dirty work.

I made the transition to management to earn more money. Lower and middle management work is often not much fun. A lot of stress, extra work, the lower/middle manager does the dirty work, someone above takes the credit for any significant successes.
. . .
Management is not the path to life fulfillment. However, it might provide a few more $ along the way.
I agree completely. I turned down every attempt to promote me and retired at
48 as a bottom level programmer. I am sure I left a few $$ on the table, but I
was able to work a flat 40 hours and have very little work stress for most of
my career.
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Old 08-27-2007, 05:53 PM   #90
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.. I recently decided not to apply for an opening in management, because it pays the same as my present salary. I would get an impressive office instead of a cubicle, but that is the only advantage that I can tell....
One more thing: bonus structure is different for management and individual contributor at my place of employment.
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Old 08-27-2007, 07:25 PM   #91
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One more thing: bonus structure is different for management and individual contributor at my place of employment.
Working for the feds, we don't have bonuses. We can sometimes get small cash awards for merit, but I am sure they are nothing like what you are talking about! So I would still not earn anything more than I do now, even for all the headaches that come with that job.
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Old 08-27-2007, 08:40 PM   #92
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W2R, sometimes decisions in life are agonizing, but fate has handed you a no-brainer, the best kind of choice.


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Chinaco, what jaded perspective are you referring to? I see only realistic perception in your analysis.
Forgive the jaded perspective.

Barbarus appreciates the decency of the civil discourse that the members exhibit here and has no need to be other than civil to others.
On the other hand Barbarus must temper his true feelings about the "system"
down to a "G" rating so as not to offend younger or more sensitive viewers.
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Old 08-27-2007, 08:57 PM   #93
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W2R, sometimes decisions in life are agonizing, but fate has handed you a no-brainer, the best kind of choice.
I'm glad you agree. The office would be spectacular and impressive, with a huge window and view, and nice furniture. But, I don't think it's worth it.
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Old 08-27-2007, 09:07 PM   #94
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Seductive, no?
Yet, you'd seldom be able to look up from your work to look out the big window and the space would soon fill with the accouterments of w*ork.

Just watch what happens to the poor patsy that they actually hook. You'll find it a constant source of affirmation and renewal.
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Old 08-27-2007, 09:09 PM   #95
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Seductive, no?
Yet, you'd seldom be able to look up from your work to look out the big window and the space would soon fill with the accouterments of w*ork.

Just watch what happens to the poor patsy that they actually hook. You'll find it a constant source of affirmation and renewal.
LOL!!! You are probably right. I think I'll spend my last two year of work being very happy that I did not get myself into that beautiful office. My cubicle may be small and unimpressive, but it will do.
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Old 08-27-2007, 10:49 PM   #96
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Count me as another engineer actively avoiding the management positions. The salary would probably be slightly (maybe 10-15%) better, but not worth the extra hours, politics, and paperwork. I've watched several friends go into management - they complain about losing their technical skills from disuse, and spending all their time on meetings. Not tempting at all!
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Old 08-27-2007, 10:53 PM   #97
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I'm glad you agree. The office would be spectacular and impressive, with a huge window and view, and nice furniture. But, I don't think it's worth it.
But you will be spending most of the time in conference rooms.
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Old 08-28-2007, 02:34 AM   #98
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I chuckled when I saw your comment about dream for advancement... I did not find your aspiration funny nor am I making fun of your comment.

What I found funny is that the dream (if realized) can often turn into a nightmare. Management jobs typically suck. Unrealistic expectations by someone above (peter principal) that does not have a clue. And left with doing the dirty work.

I made the transition to management to earn more money. Lower and middle management work is often not much fun. A lot of stress, extra work, the lower/middle manager does the dirty work, someone above takes the credit for any significant successes.
...

Management is not the path to life fulfillment. However, it might provide a few more $ along the way.


Having taken the path from developer to lower and now upper mgmt, I would completely agree on the pain of mgmt. There was a lot more job satisfaction back when I could actually do work and create something (vs. direct someone to create something). And yes, I spend pretty much all day in various meetings

However, on the compensation angle, I would say that it's worth looking beyond a compensation comparison of say a top-level engineer with that of an entry level manager. True, those salaries are fairly similar, and true, the entry level mgmt job really sucks in comparison. But the salary comparison fails after the first few years since as a new manager, you're at the bottom of a whole new set of pay scales and compensation options, while as a top-level engineer, you're pretty much stuck with COLA adjustments. For me, it took about 5 years in mgmt to roughly double my former lead developer salary with raises, bonuses, and profit sharing. My wife went through almost the exact same experience at her job at a completely different kind of company when she went into mgmt.

Not to say that every company provides those kinds of options (those in govt and those in the middle of the country probably have much more limited opportunities), and of course, you have to earn those bonuses and entry into performance-based profit sharing plans, but something to think about and investigate if you're considering a mgmt position for more $$s: Project forward to see what compensation options might be available to you if you stuck it out for a few years, and then decide whether the BS is worth it.
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Old 08-28-2007, 03:45 AM   #99
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Glad to hear your perspective, Chinaco. I recently decided not to apply for an opening in management, because it pays the same as my present salary. I would get an impressive office instead of a cubicle, but that is the only advantage that I can tell. I had wanted that job for years as a step up to a higher salary, but due to my promotion that is no longer a motivation. Plus, I plan to ER in a couple of years and I really couldn't get much done in that time.

What you said confirms that I made the right decision. I don't want to put up with the B(*&S%$# and endless meetings!!
If you only have a few years left to work, it probably would not be worthwhile. Especially if you do not get a jump in pay to a higher salary band. It usually take a couple of years to prove oneself in a new position. If there is no money in it... why do it. There is always stress with starting a new job. Not to mention that if you suddenly become the boss of peers, there will be friction (Almost guaranteed). You will have to make unpopular decisions. Let's face it, if you are the boss, it is your job to get things done on time within budget.
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Old 08-28-2007, 07:28 AM   #100
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Skyline,

Good point - it's $$$ (or status) vs. job satisfaction.

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