Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
A little ditty on self promotion and age
Old 01-20-2018, 09:45 AM   #1
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 1,782
A little ditty on self promotion and age

The first PC arrived at my mega corp subsidiary and landed on a table behind my desk. It was an IBM, expensive, clunky, pre hard drive so there was lots of disk swapping and the screen was monochromatic- by today’s standards a real dinosaur.
It did what I needed it to do and I was overjoyed to have access to it. I over time I gained some invaluable skills.

I was told it wasn’t solely for my use. There was an engineer, an older gentleman who occasionally used it. I must admit at the time I thought Wow “the old guy gets it”.

I left the subsidiary a few years later and went to mega corp proper, joining a group of divisional controllers. I wasn’t there a few weeks when a tedious lots of spreadsheet (lotus 123) manipulation job came down from corporate. The Boss split the job up and sent us to our desk to get at it. No one said you couldn’t so I set about coding a solution. About an hour later I turned in the work. “You can’t be done” I explained and demonstrated my code to the crew. What took hours could be done in minutes; they were amazed. Ive been steadily employed since and got to travel to some great places.

Fast forward thirty years and Im in different part of the firm years and another huge job came up. The area we going to test had a reputation for being out of control with lots of problems. Julie the Lady running the job had been hand picked because she was smart, a great communicator, and had a reputation for getting things done. Better yet she is a great person. The specific test I was to provide technical support was assigned to a Paige a junior staffer and a nice kid. Paige was busy with closing out her last job so she left me alone. I spent hours duplicating the business processes and pulling and scraping data from multiple sources in code. Rather then a ridiculous small sample we tested hundreds of transactions. Rather then just dump the data on Paige I created the documentation. In the end Julie said as long as you do that kind of work you can charge as many hours you want.

We have a weekly process of submitting our accomplishments; The week I finished the job I spent some time to carefully write up what I’d created.

Last week the bosses boss called to let me know what will likely be my last annual bonus was. The number was terrific and he said You are being rewarded for your innovation.

Imagine that an innovator at 63. I couldn’t help but think “I guess the old guy gets it”.

I think too many of us think creativity is the purview of the young.
__________________

rayinpenn is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 01-20-2018, 10:53 AM   #2
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Amethyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 8,482
I think you have an odd tendency to call yourself an old guy in your posts, although you are only a couple of years older than I am.

I don't think of myself as old, and I'm definitely innovative.

That said, if I'd been Julie, I would have been most impressed by your initiative and attention to detail. Those are rare enough at any age.
__________________

__________________
If you understood everything I say, you'd be me ~ Miles Davis
'There is only one success – to be able to spend your life in your own way.’ Christopher Morley.
It involved a mannequin hand, and an electric shaver taped to a golf club! - "The Other Guys"
Amethyst is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2018, 10:53 AM   #3
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Sunset's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Spending the Kids Inheritance and living in Chicago
Posts: 9,188
What a nice story for an old geezer

Hey, I cracked 5K with this post, and didn't actually notice until afterwards.
Sunset is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2018, 01:19 PM   #4
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
growing_older's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2,657
As an older guy, still a few years younger than you, I am clearly an older guy in the sea of 20-something programmers. This might not be "old" by the standards of possible early retirees, but it is definitely old by the standards of hot-shot high tech teams.
growing_older is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2018, 01:51 PM   #5
Moderator
Jerry1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 4,106
I suspect that some (probably a lot) of your innovation comes from the depth of background you have. Try as they may, the younger group cannot have the benefit of all your experiences and therefore , you still have an edge. Maybe even a full on advantage.

I know my life changed when I hired programming/data people that actually knew the business (accountants). Without their experience, I would get - "that's what your specifications were". With them and their experience, they would just program what I wanted even when I couldn't articulate very well what I wanted. Great group of people on that team.
Jerry1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2018, 01:57 PM   #6
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Amethyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 8,482
Point taken, but Ray calls himself "old" in all his posts, even when computers are not mentioned. I find it puzzling when people do this. Probably the Mr. Spock in me coming out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by growing_older View Post
As an older guy, still a few years younger than you, I am clearly an older guy in the sea of 20-something programmers. This might not be "old" by the standards of possible early retirees, but it is definitely old by the standards of hot-shot high tech teams.
__________________
If you understood everything I say, you'd be me ~ Miles Davis
'There is only one success – to be able to spend your life in your own way.’ Christopher Morley.
It involved a mannequin hand, and an electric shaver taped to a golf club! - "The Other Guys"
Amethyst is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2018, 02:15 PM   #7
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
walkinwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Denver
Posts: 3,092
I tell every young kid I get to know to learn coding - any kind of coding. It is an invaluable skill in today's world. .. even for old guys.
walkinwood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2018, 02:39 PM   #8
Recycles dryer sheets
shortstop14's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 278
For the last decade or so of my IT career, my design and architecture requirements and standards far exceeded my coding ability. Or, maybe exceeded my desire to learn yet another suite of new programming tools. But I did understand what the newer tools could accomplish.

Fortunately, my job evolved to be translation of business requirements to our programmers in India. There was a bit of a tendency to get back exactly what I asked for, so when I found developers who could take what I asked for and reflect back even better methods, I worked hard to keep them on my team.

I don't think age got in the way, more depth of business knowledge that was useful. My career started with unit record equipment, punch cards and card readers. It would have been hard to compete in programming with kids coming out of university with experience in current programming tools and methods.
shortstop14 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2018, 02:54 PM   #9
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
frayne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Chattanooga
Posts: 3,122
It always helps to be at the top of the learning and experience curve, regardless of age. Congrats and good job.
__________________
The only thing constant in life is change.
frayne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2018, 03:09 PM   #10
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
RobbieB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Central CA
Posts: 5,246
I wasted a lot of time taking management classes when I could have been learning C instead.
__________________
Retired at 59 in 2014. Should have done it sooner but I worried too much.
RobbieB is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2018, 04:09 PM   #11
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Red Badger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Hog Mountian
Posts: 1,995
Good tale, and congrats on the 5K.
__________________
Never let yesterday use up too much of today.
W. Rogers
Red Badger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2018, 06:59 PM   #12
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 1,394
Well done sir. Way to represent!
__________________
“Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes. That way, you’ll be a mile from them, and you’ll have their shoes.” – Jack Handey
candrew is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2018, 07:15 PM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 2,204
Quote:
Originally Posted by rayinpenn View Post
The first PC arrived at my mega corp subsidiary and landed on a table behind my desk. It was an IBM, expensive, clunky, pre hard drive so there was lots of disk swapping and the screen was monochromatic- by today’s standards a real dinosaur.
It did what I needed it to do and I was overjoyed to have access to it. I over time I gained some invaluable skills.

I was told it wasn’t solely for my use. There was an engineer, an older gentleman who occasionally used it. I must admit at the time I thought Wow “the old guy gets it”.

I left the subsidiary a few years later and went to mega corp proper, joining a group of divisional controllers. I wasn’t there a few weeks when a tedious lots of spreadsheet (lotus 123) manipulation job came down from corporate. The Boss split the job up and sent us to our desk to get at it. No one said you couldn’t so I set about coding a solution. About an hour later I turned in the work. “You can’t be done” I explained and demonstrated my code to the crew. What took hours could be done in minutes; they were amazed. Ive been steadily employed since and got to travel to some great places.

Fast forward thirty years and Im in different part of the firm years and another huge job came up. The area we going to test had a reputation for being out of control with lots of problems. Julie the Lady running the job had been hand picked because she was smart, a great communicator, and had a reputation for getting things done. Better yet she is a great person. The specific test I was to provide technical support was assigned to a Paige a junior staffer and a nice kid. Paige was busy with closing out her last job so she left me alone. I spent hours duplicating the business processes and pulling and scraping data from multiple sources in code. Rather then a ridiculous small sample we tested hundreds of transactions. Rather then just dump the data on Paige I created the documentation. In the end Julie said as long as you do that kind of work you can charge as many hours you want.

We have a weekly process of submitting our accomplishments; The week I finished the job I spent some time to carefully write up what I’d created.

Last week the bosses boss called to let me know what will likely be my last annual bonus was. The number was terrific and he said You are being rewarded for your innovation.

Imagine that an innovator at 63. I couldn’t help but think “I guess the old guy gets it”.

I think too many of us think creativity is the purview of the young.
Not bad for a kid Keep it up!
ejman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2018, 08:44 PM   #14
Full time employment: Posting here.
FlaGator's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: The 850
Posts: 613
Old age and treachery will always beat youth and exuberance

Congrats, Ray! Glad you're still finding professional success and personal satisfaction.
__________________
Stay at home slacker dad since 2015
FlaGator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2018, 09:41 AM   #15
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Long Island
Posts: 1,241
Ray, you are smart and you are smart. (Solving the problem and letting the bosses know what you accomplished.)

There is a lot of satisfaction in a great accomplishment - and it is very satisfying to be acknowledged.
MarieIG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2018, 10:58 AM   #16
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 1,782
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amethyst View Post
Point taken, but Ray calls himself "old" in all his posts, even when computers are not mentioned. I find it puzzling when people do this.

Allow me to add a little little perspective. I estimate the average age in our shop to be roughly 32 but most are under 30. Many are a year or two out of college. At 63 I am the oldest my buddy Bill is 58 then there’s a couple around fifty. There are 5 of us techies and the youngest is 33.
rayinpenn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2018, 11:00 PM   #17
Recycles dryer sheets
lwp2017's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 157
When I was 18, my dad advised me to never "fight" with an old man.

He won't fight " fare" , he knows every dirty trick to win.

Also if the old guy thinks he is about to lose, he will just pull out a gun, shoot you and claim self-defense as a helpless old man.

Took me about 25 years to fully understand his message.
lwp2017 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2018, 11:37 PM   #18
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Placerville
Posts: 1,053
In the 60's my dad worked for a major newspaper. He brought home a linotype machine and I learned how to program on that. I think it was invented in the 30's. Here's a photo of the punch tape created to run the type setting machine that would print newspaper;



Used to do programming on a CRAY computer using machine language in binary and then HEX (hexidecimal), before assembly language. Then along came Fortran, C, Pascal and a little thing called a compiler. Disk drives the size of a washing machine and tape drives as large as a side-by-side refrigerator. I actually got to meet Seymour Cray. This was for the military and all I'll say about that!
skipro33 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-2018, 08:09 AM   #19
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Nemo2's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Belleville, ONT
Posts: 7,323
Well done.......but where's the ditty?

Quote:
Noun 1. ditty - a short simple song (or the words of a poem intended to be sung)
__________________
"Exit, pursued by a bear."

The Winter's Tale, William Shakespeare
Nemo2 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-2018, 11:33 AM   #20
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
kcowan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pacific latitude 20/49
Posts: 7,057
Send a message via Skype™ to kcowan
I read all threads started by Ray. He seems to be able to engage me in thinking even if I don't contribute. Maybe it is his aptitude combined with his attitude? Even if there was no ditty!

(And in computers, there is ample room for a little thinking before coding.)
__________________

__________________
For the fun of it...Keith
kcowan is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Total self promotion Khan Other topics 30 05-21-2012 02:40 PM
Blatant self promotion Khan Health and Early Retirement 23 07-01-2010 08:08 AM
Shameless self-promotion Khan Other topics 32 04-06-2009 11:35 PM

» Quick Links

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:51 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×