12 effective habits of indispensable IT pros

Ditch the slackers, take on dirty work, do it with data -- here's how to get the inside track on a highly rewarding career in IT

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Effective IT habit No. 2: Keep your eye on the bottom line

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Your job isn't just to keep the data center humming. It's to help your organization use technology to improve the business.

Servers running at a fraction of capacity? If you haven't already virtualized, now's the time. Software licenses dragging down your budget? An increasingly broad choice of low-cost cloud-based apps awaits.

"IT professionals need to focus on areas that either drive down costs, such as virtualization, cloud computing, and converged networking, or on areas that help to generate revenue, such as social media, mobile marketing, and SEO," notes Rick Mancinelli, managing partner for Cloud Computing Concepts. "Ultimately, those IT professionals who have a positive impact on the bottom line will be the most valuable to their employer."

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