Change is a four letter word: “Gold” and 6 great ways to get some

Wow, what an industry we’re in, mega-trend after mega-trend; cloud computing, tablet computers, GPS enabled devices, smart phone, not-so-smart phone, and more. There’s gold in them there trends for the techies that can identify a unique niche, application type or business need, or job opportunity.

These industry-changing trends can be of great career and financial benefit to you. That said, consider the following:

  1. Do your research and find job openings at companies that you think will grow dramatically because of current industry trends and changes. All ships rise in high tide. If you work for a growing company, chances are that you can grow with it; not to mention the potential value of stock options and/or stock purchase plans if available.
  2. If you are at a company you love, try to discover ways that your company can take advantage of new and evolving technologies. This has two advantages for you; first, it can help you become an internal company thought leader, second, using these technologies will enhance your personal/professional marketability.
  3. If your company is moving toward new technologies, such as developing an internal company Private Cloud, try to get involved. It can help establish your role as a participant in the company’s new technical direction. Also, if your company’s plan is to replace older technologies with newer ones, working on these newer technologies could save your job.
  4. If you are entrepreneurial by nature, your skill set is aligned with one of these new technologies, and your personal situation allows it, now may be the time to try to start your own company on a part-time or full-time basis.
  5. If you are in an internal IT group, try to align new technologies with the business needs of the groups you support. If you can do it cost effectively, you can provide real value to your business users, IT, and your company in general.
  6. If you like to write or speak at conferences as a way of enhancing your professional brand, experience and practical knowledge in an up-and-coming technology can help you get published and/or a speaking slot at a professional conference.

As mentioned in earlier columns, industry changing trends, like cloud computing, has the potential to generate winners and losers because of its technology shift. Other technologies, such as tablet computing, smart phones, and GPS enabled devices, because they are new technology paradigms; tend to bring immense opportunities with minimum short-term risk to other technologies because they are an “addition to” rather than a “replacement of” type product. In the longer term, however, these “addition to” technologies will, in fact, reduce the demand for other products. For example, less people today buy paper maps because their cars have GPS systems. This change in buying patterns, however, has taken years to take form.

In closing, how many people do you think have said to themselves or others “Wow, I wish I got involved in the internet when it first became popular.”? (I’m not actually looking for a specific number; this question was just rhetorical :)

Well, five or ten years from now, don’t be the one saying the same thing about today’s new technologies. Learn about them and get involved. If you do, the combination of hard work, backing the right horse, and more than a little good luck, may bring your wealth and professional growth.

If you have any questions about your career in IT, please email me at eric@ManagerMechanics.com or find me on Twitter at @EricPBloom.

Until next time, work hard, work smart, and continue to grow.

Read more of Eric Bloom's Your IT Career blog and follow the latest IT news at ITworld. Follow Eric on Twitter at @EricPBloom. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook.

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