New Digs

by Seth Miller

I’d like to say that my absence over the last few months has something to do with my job change, but that just doesn’t hold water. Especially, since I only changed jobs three weeks ago. I just haven’t felt like writing anything for the last few months. I often think about blogging but it seems that every time I psyche myself up to do it, I can’t think of anything unique to offer. In other words, the stuff that I want to write about has already been done and written about many times over. I’m slowly convincing myself that it doesn’t matter and that this medium is as much of an outlet for me as it is a consumable for others.

I have a lot of complaints about my previous employer, but no regrets. I learned a lot from my work, the technology I used, the people I worked with and the experiences I gained over the last three years. I left amicably (as amicably as possible when leaving a job) and could see myself there again sometime in the future. In fact, I suggested as much.

My new employer as of the beginning of November is entirely different from my previous one. For one thing, it is a large company, as in many, many times the size in people and revenue. I was very hesitant because I have only worked in small or medium size companies for my entire IT career. I have always had all the keys, passwords and clearance.

Now I have very little and my jurisdiction is clearly defined. In the past three weeks, I have come to love the fact that I am somewhat locked down in my silo of database services. Database is what I fell in love with and committed to way back in the beginning. A recent trip to Oracle OpenWorld renewed that passion and made this transition the obvious right choice.

So now I am a “Database Analyst – Oracle” (according to my business card). Everything else is provided to me through a company service. By the time I see the server the OS is installed, the configuration of the network, disk, etc. is done and verified and the installation files I need are mounted on an NFS share. Sweet! You mean I actually get to start and finish a project without having to babysit or do every process in between that I’m not supposed to be doing? I’ll take it.

Here’s the really fun part. I’m working directly with people that are as passionate about technology and career growth as I am. Everywhere I look there is someone to laud and strive to emulate. These things make for a very challenging and fulfilling work day.

Possibly the most important thing is the person I report to. Management methods vary as much as personalities so finding the right person to work under can be very challenging. I believe I have found close to what I have characterized in my mind as the ideal manager. The way I see a manager in a professional environment is someone whose end goal is to deliver objectives to his superior. Everything else should be a means to that end.

So when I hear my manager say that he doesn’t have time to manage me as an individual and he only expects me to deliver the finished product on time, I feel that the totality of the effort I put in to succeed in my job is going to make myself look just as good to my manager as my manager will look to his director. I don’t have to worry about the stuff that doesn’t matter like figuratively punching a timecard or worrying about scheduling dentist appointments after work hours.

I realize I am only in week three and a lot can change in a short time, but I feel like I’m in the right place now and I’m ready to really showcase my skills and see if this company is ready to accommodate what I am looking for and capable of producing.

By the way, the coffee here is fantastic and free!