Some days before I was talking to a friend of mine. He stayed in the company that I left more than four years before.
As we worked together for a long time we had some chats about how to improve, keep pace, hearing the heartbeat of the technology as it is evolving… and surprisingly he didn’t care about it at all.
No, it is not like he didn’t care for it the last time, he actually never was really interested in improving or evolving himself. Questions like “What’s my next objective?”, “Where do I want to evolve until I am 45?” is may be something that he talks about, but never took for serious.
Yes, there are a lot of people doing IT work that don’t have any passion for it. That is quite okay, as I believe most of the people doing a job for their living don’t have the luxury of having a hobby that they evolved so they can earn money with it. I still believe doing the one thing that you love really makes you good in it. Actually – I do have more than one of it. But programming was actually – beside some sports – my first real love, afterwards it was playing guitar. And with the latter one you really have to be the lucky guy to make the money with it.
So it is wrong? Is it good enough? Every morning I try to read through my ever growing list of bloggers and catch the latest news. I picked up a very interesting one from Scott Hanselman this morning, that actually has the same problems as everybody else. Just have a look onto Give yourself permission to have work-life balance.
Does that apply to not evolving?
The problem with not keeping pace with the technology is not, that you are going to be worse. It is, the others are improving. So the longer one does not evolve, the others will move on, so there will be that critical point in time when one is not worth the money anmore.
Does that put pressure? (I am just thinking of the COBOL guys outthere)
I am pretty happy that I do not feel the burden to evolve. I love that stuff. I love to learn new things. When one always have to face new technologies, fighting the unknown will be the default, not making one feel uncomfortable.
So the question is, concering the work-life balance: How much evolving is necessary?
But not doing anything, come on.
One of the real advantages being in that kind of business is, that I don’t have to do the identical thing every day. Like driving exactly the same route. Doing exactly the same tasks. Talking the same sentences.
Think of DRY. Do something new.
Keep your pace. Enjoy it.