Growth vs comfort

phoeneousphoeneous Go ping yourself...Posts: 2,333Member ■■■■■■■□□□
Someone I know is in a bit of a bind and it got me thinking to what I would do in his situation. 10 years total in IT, he's been happy with the same employer for the last 6 years making a cool 100k. However he's the sole IT managing all networking, servers, voip, databases, and unfortunately helpdesk. His job, while easy and cush, is becoming stagnant and he predicts not much growth or exposure to new stuff.

He's been presented with an opportunity to join a startup as a systems engineer and will get tons of exposure to cloud systems, virtualization, devops, storage, colo, etc.. They new job would be 90k so a little less than his current job but would open up a whole new world and broaden his experience.

He asked me what I would do and it made me think a bit. Seeing as how our field is ever changing, I'd elect for growth over comfort and would jump on the new job. What would you guys do and why?

Comments

  • PC509PC509 CISSP, CEH, CCNA: Security/CyberOps, Sec+, CHFI, A+, Proj+, Server+, MCITP Win7, Vista, MCP Server 2 Oregon, USPosts: 764Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    For me, I'd weigh the stability of both places. Could he stay another 10 years at his current job? Will his new job last 10 years? I'd hate to start a new job, get 6 months in and be laid off or whatever.

    If that was equal, then I'd probably jump ship. I hate being stagnant. My current job, I get a lot of opportunities to learn new technologies. My boss will throw me tasks that are beyond me and tell me "if you need any help, reach out to us". I love it. I have learned so much, and have been exposed to a lot of things I otherwise wouldn't have. He says that when we do training (twice a year), do one that improves knowledge with something at work, and the other for something you want in your career - doesn't have to be something we use at work. So, he's treating us well and training us well so if we move on, we're doing great. But, we don't want to move on! :)
  • nelson8403nelson8403 Posts: 220Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    I ran into something like this, I had a great job. 5 minutes from work, good pay, easy company had tons of time to myself. However it is was very stagnant, I was the only guy there was no opportunity to move up, do different things every day. I ended up being offered a job doing security work and I ended up taking it even though it's about an hour drive for me now, about the same pay (little more) and a lot bigger of a company, just the opportunity to put this on my resume, possibly work up in the organization was worth it. Dealing with an international company vs a mom and pop was a huge upside for me.
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  • Danielm7Danielm7 Posts: 2,237Member ■■■■■■■□□□
    nelson8403 wrote: »
    I ran into something like this, I had a great job. 5 minutes from work, good pay, easy company had tons of time to myself. However it is was very stagnant, I was the only guy there was no opportunity to move up, do different things every day. I ended up being offered a job doing security work and I ended up taking it even though it's about an hour drive for me now, about the same pay (little more) and a lot bigger of a company, just the opportunity to put this on my resume, possibly work up in the organization was worth it. Dealing with an international company vs a mom and pop was a huge upside for me.

    Very similar situation for me. My last position I wasn't there as long (2 years), super casual, could do anything I wanted, under a 10 minute walk from home. But, it wasn't what I wanted to do, totally unchallenged, no room for growth. Ended up taking another job at a much larger company, I had to buy a 2nd car, drive at least 30 minutes each way. But, I enjoy my work so much more now, don't dread going at all and I'm learning like crazy and they are already talking of promoting me. Sometimes getting out of your comfort zone can be the best thing for you.
  • TheFORCETheFORCE Posts: 2,235Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    Danielm7 wrote: »
    Very similar situation for me. My last position I wasn't there as long (2 years), super casual, could do anything I wanted, under a 10 minute walk from home. But, it wasn't what I wanted to do, totally unchallenged, no room for growth. Ended up taking another job at a much larger company, I had to buy a 2nd car, drive at least 30 minutes each way. But, I enjoy my work so much more now, don't dread going at all and I'm learning like crazy and they are already talking of promoting me. Sometimes getting out of your comfort zone can be the best thing for you.

    That is exactly right, you cannot exceed your limits if everything you do all the time is within your comfort zone.
  • XavorXavor Posts: 161Member
    Does he have the opportunity for stock options if he moves?

    If I was in a stagnant job I would move for growth all other factors being the same. I don't have a wife or kids to keep me nailed to a job though.
  • phoeneousphoeneous Go ping yourself... Posts: 2,333Member ■■■■■■■□□□
    PC509 wrote: »
    For me, I'd weigh the stability of both places. Could he stay another 10 years at his current job? Will his new job last 10 years? I'd hate to start a new job, get 6 months in and be laid off or whatever.

    But that could be applied anywhere. Every employer has layoffs. The stability of the startup is in the experience, not necessarily the startup themselves, but they do look very promising.

    I used to hate the proverbial "cloud" but I'm beginning to embrace it. There's been a paradigm shift in IT and to future proof one should embrace new stuffs.
  • kiki162kiki162 Posts: 635Member
    If you are taking option B, I'd make sure you have enough to support yourself in case the worst happens. Doing the same stuff everyday can get boring after a while, however that all depends on where you are in life. At some point, you have to weigh your options especially when you can see a retirement in the future with the company you are employed with. If you dread the company you are with now, then you need to move while you still can, but at some point you'll have to buckle down for the ride.
  • N2ITN2IT Posts: 7,483Inactive Imported Users
    Less money and more risk. I 'll pass

    Of course it depends on the persons goals and drivers.
  • NetworkNewbNetworkNewb They are watching you Posts: 3,237Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    Yea, if I was at a job where I was happy, the job was "easy and cush", and I was pulling in 100k it would definitely take a pretty good job to get me to leave. I don't think I would take a 10% pay cut for a new job when you're happy at the current one. Definitely a personal decision though.
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  • dave330idave330i Posts: 2,091Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Is he getting any shares of the startup? Depending on the amount, it's worth switching.

    Is he interested in any of the new technology he'll be exposed to? If interested, then it's worth switching.

    Can he live of the reduced salary? If yes, then it's worth switching.

    Is he up to date on his certs? If yes, then it's worth switching.
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  • z335isz335is Posts: 14Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    I'm in somewhat of a similar situation now, where I am in a job that is super-comfortably / cushy, in my case though, the new job I was offered is about a 25% raise. I'm honestly not sure I would do it for a lateral or negative move salary-wise.
  • JoJoCal19JoJoCal19 California Kid Posts: 2,772Mod Mod
    I'm also in a similar situation although I am in a job and at a place where I can grow for the foreseeable future, just not as much as I would prefer. But with my salary and especially the benefits (including 100% match up to 8%), the extremely laid back environment and hands off management, and the point of my life that I'm at, it's really hard to justify leaving, even if I could jump my income up at a faster rate. As it stands if you get a meets then you get a 3-6% raise each year. Since I plan on moving on from IT in another 17 years I figure why not just chill here and bank (will still keep up with my knowledge and skills on my own). But then that part of me that's addicted to continual self improvement and growth keeps thinking about the possibilities.
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  • E Double UE Double U Posts: 1,538Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    I've always chosen growth over comfort and things have worked out pretty well.
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  • PJ_SneakersPJ_Sneakers CompTIA, EC-Council, ISACA, (ISC)², Microsoft USAPosts: 879Member ■■■■■■□□□□
    N2IT wrote: »
    Less money and more risk. I 'll pass

    Of course it depends on the persons goals and drivers.
    This!

    I'd even be inclined to take a less money, if there is considerably less risk. (Within reason, of course.)

    If he basically in control of IT at his current job, then he sounds like he's in a position to possibly create personal growth opportunities.
  • Fulcrum45Fulcrum45 CCNA R/S, CCNA Sec, Net+, Sec+, MTA Posts: 574Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    Me personally I'd stay put. But that's because my wife and son drive most of my career goals now- but I wouldn't have it any other way :)
  • phoeneousphoeneous Go ping yourself... Posts: 2,333Member ■■■■■■■□□□
    This!

    I'd even be inclined to take a less money, if there is considerably less risk. (Within reason, of course.)

    If he basically in control of IT at his current job, then he sounds like he's in a position to possibly create personal growth opportunities.

    Not really. At his current company, the business is not driven by IT nor does it drive IT. He still has a ton of 03 stuff, no major projects on the horizon which means no new products/tech, there is not enough business/budget for him to hire a helpdesk guy to take that off of his plate and he really really helps doing helpdesk stuff. I told him to switch. DevOps is really hot now and with his operations and engineer background he could really put himself in a versatile market, figuratively the best of both worlds (cloud and enterprise).
  • SixtyCycleSixtyCycle Posts: 111Member
    Where is he based? How much does he believe in the product/service that the startup is developing?
  • /usr/usr Posts: 1,768Member
    10K decrease and exposure to more tech, when the current job is admittedly stale? I would take the new one in a heartbeat.

    Keep in mind that it's not so black and white, as others have pointed out. If you were to stay at the stale job for another 10 years, learning nothing new, what happens when it comes time when you are forced to move on for whatever reason?

    Letting your skills get stagnant for too long a period generally spells trouble down the line, especially in this industry.
  • DeathmageDeathmage Posts: 2,496Banned
    I had a very similar issue about 10 months ago and I was very comfortable at the job but wasn't learning anything and I knew everyone very well. Took allot of courage from me to resign but I didn't burn my bridge. From time-to-time they still call me to say hi and sometimes they call since I knew everything about the IT in the company. I was the Jack-of-all-trades for the company well before I was ready. I basically took on a Senior role @ age 25 since 3 weeks in the job back in 2009 my boss just left the company and me being the Junior administrator got thrown into the role. Let's just say 2009/2010 I don't remember at all.... (90+ hour weeks)

    It was by-far the hardest decision of my life to move on, but if you have followed my posts the past 10 months looking back on it now it was the smartest decision I ever made. The exposure I've had to multiple networks and finally my current gig as a Lead System Administrator has been anything short of amazing. I look forward to each day and I reflect on my past experiences to guide my new experiences into the future.

    I'd say go for it, the new experience will propel your career and instead of looking like the IT guy that everyone saw you as from 10 years ago, they will see you as the professional you are now....and being seen as who you are and not as who you were is immeasurable in some many ways.

    Hope this helps!!!
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