Progression Path? End game?

LarryDaManLarryDaMan Posts: 797Member
For those of us who are 30+ or for just anyone who thinks about the future. What is the end game? Where does the progression path lead?

Many people on here are working towards MCSEs, CCNPs, CCIEs... but after landing great gigs as system adminstrators, network engineers, consultants, network architects....etc. What is next or is that it??

I am 32 and I don't see myself wanting to be that disgruntled bitter 50 year old still doing tech stuff, and I have seen a few of these people.

I work in a cryptography/secure voice lab and I am a manager. But, I am also involved with the technical side including some limited network and database admin tasks. I have enjoyed doing some of these basic IT certs. I have hit a crossroads of sorts, I feel like I have to pick...

I figure by the beginning of the next year, I will look for a new position, so I have been pondering this..

For all of you IT guys, besides being rich and retired... what job/position do you see yourself in when you're 50?
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Comments

  • empc4000xlempc4000xl Posts: 322Member
    50+ its all about teaching for me. IT is not a old man's game if your not in upper management by then. Also technical trainer for the few companies that still have internal training departments. Its a few things to do when you get up there in age.
  • SlowhandSlowhand MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure, MCSA: Windows Server 2003/2012/2016, CCNA Routing & Switchi Bay Area, CaliforniaPosts: 5,163Mod Mod
    I think we all dream of "making it big someday", but I'm hoping that most people are in this industry because they enjoy the work.

    As for me, I'm sort of in a weird boat. I was dragged into IT, kicking and screaming, by a friend of mine. He suggested I build my first computer, he is to blame for my taking my first networking and programming classes, he was my lab-partner for my MCSE and IT security classes, and he put in a good word for me at my first IT job. . . that bastard. icon_lol.gif

    In my heart of hearts, I've wanted to go into science and engineering, but my interest in computers and networking still stays with me. So, while I go to school, working on a degree in Computer Science & Electrical Engineering, I work in IT and I strive to become certified. Incidentally, I took enough classes at one point to get an Associate degree in Computer Information Systems, so I've got that to fall back on as well. I guess what I want to be doing when I'm 50 is going to be doing some kind of research, (read "blowing stuff up",) or working on some mad-boy design for something I dream up after hitting my head, or something along those lines. (With my luck, I'll probably end up teaching. . . and my students will be just like me. icon_eek.gif )

    For me, working in IT is enjoyable, but probably not what I want to do for the rest of my life. Right now it's definitely more rewarding than flipping burgers or serving up $4 cups of coffee while I take classes. The best thing that can happen is that I get through what I need to do and tag on one of those little three-letter titles to my name that starts with a 'P', ends with a 'D', and has an 'h' in the middle. The worst thing that can happen, is that I fall back on a career I enjoy, working as a network engineer or systems administrator. All in all, not a bad outlook.

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  • dynamikdynamik Posts: 12,314Banned ■■■■■■■■□□
    I think I'd like to end up in training. I enjoy these forums so much because I enjoy sharing knowledge with people. I think after I get some serious experience, I'd like to transition into higher level security training.
  • royalroyal Posts: 3,353Member
    I'm going to spend the next 30 years getting so good at scripting that I will write a script that will be able to take over the world.
    “For success, attitude is equally as important as ability.” - Harry F. Banks
  • astorrsastorrs Posts: 3,139Member ■■■■■■□□□□
    royal wrote:
    I'm going to spend the next 30 years getting so good at scripting that I will write a script that will be able to take over the world.
    So what, you want to be one of those "script geezers"?
  • AhriakinAhriakin SupremeNetworkOverlord Posts: 1,800Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    I don't plan that far ahead, you can't, you really don't know what's going to happen in the next 5 years let alone 30. I'm in tech because I like it, have since I was a kid, I'm lucky that I get to make a living at it. What I would 'love' to make a living at though is music and it's in my mind to take a break of sorts after the CCIE, still work enough contracts to pay the bills, but setup my DAW again and return to composing for a while. I don't ever want to go into pure management. I've been in project and team lead positions before and that's fine so long as I can still get my hands on the iron, but pure managemen...nah.
    We responded to the Year 2000 issue with "Y2K" solutions...isn't this the kind of thinking that got us into trouble in the first place?
  • KGhaleonKGhaleon Posts: 1,347Member
    My future goal is to get a security clearance and work for an agency like the FBI or CIA, to provide technical support and maintain servers/networks. Uphold law in my own way.

    It's a dream. :)
    Present goals: MCAS, MCSA, 70-680
  • darkerosxxdarkerosxx Posts: 1,343Banned
    For me: CIO/CTO of a Fortune 500.
  • vsmith3rdvsmith3rd Posts: 142Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    I ultimately hope to be successful in a completely different field. I am preparing to launch a business with a CRM focus. I can't offer details though. IT is cool, but definitely not my end game...unless I die tomorrow. I've had multiple jobs from audio installer, marine electrician, machine shop journeyman, sales and financial consultation. And that's nothing compared to the multitude of hobbies and interests. I see no reason why I should be stuck in one career my whole life. Because its the societal norm? No thanks. I'd rather explore as many interests as possible before I check out. I ultimate will settle into a field where I feel I'm really helping people, and making a difference. That's where my CRM strategies come in.

    How far do I see myself going in IT? Engineer. I don't know if I'll be around long enough (or if I'll be skilled enough) to be an architect. I'm studying management, but I'm not interested in management in a career sense, unless its managing my own business, which will ultimately be turned over to another if all goes according to plan.
    Certified Lunatic.
  • scheistermeisterscheistermeister Posts: 748Member
    For me I have no clue. I don't know what I am doing tomorrow let alone 26 years from now. If I had to make a guess though it would be owning and running my own consulting firm.
    Give a man fire and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.
  • MishraMishra Posts: 2,468Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    I always have dreams of being successful and creative. I'm a natural inventor and I am business minded so I have a desire to create. It is interesting that programming didn't pull me into that world (although I had a great time developing for an active website when I was younger) and instead I got into systems.

    I really want to create and have a successful product. Whether that product be a new business, a new toy/tool, or some idea that I think about I really just want to create something great in life. Making money is a necessity in that role as well. I study and try and be successful for the money. And it's not because spending the money and buying material things is what I want, it is just because the money is the unit of measurement in my mind. The more money I make the more successful I feel I am.

    I'm also always trying to completely define my dreams as they aren't set in concrete. I've never had a passion or obvious desire as many people have. As Ahriakin said, things may very well change in the future.
    My blog http://www.calegp.com

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  • bertiebbertieb Posts: 1,031Member ■■■■■■□□□□
    royal wrote:
    I'm going to spend the next 30 years getting so good at scripting that I will write a script that will be able to take over the world.

    I'll spend the next 30 yrs learning scripting to be able to develop a program that combats royal's 'take over the world script', so that I'll be a hero and go down in history. Either that or I'll have wasted both mine and royal's efforts, throwing away a combined total of 60 years of effort that could have gone into something with an end goal. Yikes, guess I'll let royal take over the world then icon_eek.gif
    The trouble with quotes on the internet is that you can never tell if they are genuine - Abraham Lincoln
  • undomielundomiel Posts: 2,818Member
    Progression path?

    systems administrator -> sr. systrems administrator -> systems engineer -> completely out of debt and a good bit squirreled away -> college art instructor

    That's pretty much it. I'm in it just because there aren't very many art teachers out there that can say they have their MCSE.
    Jumping on the IT blogging band wagon -- http://www.jefferyland.com/
  • TechJunkyTechJunky Posts: 881Member
    I ideally want to move from Systems Engineer to Project Manager/System Admin Manager. I have always had a great managerial outlook on things and feel I would be able to do well in a position of that stature.

    Ideally I would like to work from home/telecommute if I stay in IT. Hold IT Training courses etc.

    I have no idea what is going to come the next 5 years. (I will be 30 then.)

    I just hope to make the best of it on my journey there.
  • learningtofly22learningtofly22 Posts: 159Member
    CTO, start a marine communications business (outfitting yachts with satellite systems for worldwide VoIP/internet connectivity), or open my own IT project management office. Loong way to go for that, but just taking it one day at a time moving in that direction.
  • shednikshednik Posts: 2,005Member
    I'd like to get into mainly research and design aspects once I have enough years on my belt being in the trenches :D
  • DatabaseHeadDatabaseHead CSM, ITIL x3, Teradata Assc, MS SQL Server, Project +, Server +, A+, N+, MS Project, CAPM, RMP Posts: 2,480Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    For those of us who are 30+ or for just anyone who thinks about the future. What is the end game? Where does the progression path lead?

    Many people on here are working towards MCSEs, CCNPs, CCIEs... but after landing great gigs as system adminstrators, network engineers, consultants, network architects....etc. What is next or is that it??

    I am 32 and I don't see myself wanting to be that disgruntled bitter 50 year old still doing tech stuff, and I have seen a few of these people.

    I work in a cryptography/secure voice lab and I am a manager. But, I am also involved with the technical side including some limited network and database admin tasks. I have enjoyed doing some of these basic IT certs. I have hit a crossroads of sorts, I feel like I have to pick...

    I figure by the beginning of the next year, I will look for a new position, so I have been pondering this..

    For all of you IT guys, besides being rich and retired... what job/position do you see yourself in when you're 50?

    Living on a beach riding a bicycle, becoming a total minimalist.  Except for my Epic driver and scotch......
  • UnixGuyUnixGuy SABSA, GCFA, GPEN, CISM, RHCE, Security+, Server+, eJPT, CCNA Posts: 4,063Mod Mod
    Wow an 11 years old thread...I was young back then and my endgame plan was stupid, glad I didn't post in this thread :dizzy:
    Interesting thread though. My 'vision'/endgame-ish goal right now is upper management...but I have few interests outside of IT that I'm pursuing as well...who knows?


    Curious to hear more views!

    Goal: MBA, Jan 2021
  • Infosec_SamInfosec_Sam Security+, CCENT, ITIL Foundation, A+ Madison, WIPosts: 398Admin Admin
    This is a fun thread to revive! I can't even remember what my end game plan was when I was in the 6th grade, or if I even had one. Now that I've been working for a couple of years, I can now say with confidence that I don't know what my endgame is going to be! All of my experience thus far has been in IT and cybersecurity, but my current position is more of an IT-themed marketing role. I'm also gong to school for information science & technology, so I could find myself as a programmer down the road as well. I mean, I've got plenty of time to decide which direction to take my career, so I'm not too worried about it right now.
    Community Manager at Infosec!
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  • NetworkNewbNetworkNewb Posts: 3,277Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    Working my way into a Security Engineer role atm, than maybe move into an architect role at some point.... Kinda think a CISO type role would be interesting down the line (like 10-15 years from now).  Not 100% sure I want to do that though.  Well see, I like figuring out and developing things that allow people to more productive atm but guessing after doing that for awhile it would change.
  • Pmorgan2Pmorgan2 CISSP, A+/Net+/Sec+/Project+, ITIL v3, CIW SDA & WSP Posts: 104Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    Working my way into a Security Engineer role atm, than maybe move into an architect role at some point.... Kinda think a CISO type role would be interesting down the line (like 10-15 years from now).  Not 100% sure I want to do that though.  Well see, I like figuring out and developing things that allow people to more productive atm but guessing after doing that for awhile it would change.
    Hey, we're on the same path!

    I have probably given this subject too much thought:


    2019 Goals: ITIL Foundation, Project+CIW Site Development Associate, CIW Web Security Professional, CCSP, ECIH, ECES, WGU BSCSIA
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  • DatabaseHeadDatabaseHead CSM, ITIL x3, Teradata Assc, MS SQL Server, Project +, Server +, A+, N+, MS Project, CAPM, RMP Posts: 2,480Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    edited June 21
    Help Desk > Desktop Tech > Desktop/Service Desk Lead > BA > SR BA > SR BIA > MISTAKE JOB :) > EA     ||||   Senior EA > Principal > Retiree
  • PC509PC509 CISSP, CEH, CCNA: Security/CyberOps, Sec+, CHFI, A+, Proj+, Server+, MCITP Win7, Vista, MCP Server 2 Oregon, USPosts: 774Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    I'm working towards a Security Engineer currently. Hoping to become a CISO eventually and then CIO or retire after that. I've done sys admin most of my career, with security always tacked onto that. Security was what I wanted to do in high school (early 90's)... that and game development, but that didn't work out. Of course, in high school it was a different mindset and I wanted to be the protector of the systems against 1337 hax0rs. I blame Tron. 
  • NetworkNewbNetworkNewb Posts: 3,277Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    Pmorgan2 said

    Hey, we're on the same path!

    I have probably given this subject too much thought:

    lol, very nice!  Looks about right!
  • 10Linefigure10Linefigure CCNP R&S, Security+ USAPosts: 368Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Progression = stay ahead of the curve, in my case that means python and cyber. For someone else it could be another path. 
    End game = retire at 37 since thats when I could of retired if I had stayed int the army. 

    Then... sail the world for a few years and come back to run for mayor in my local city and spend the rest of my life trying to make it the best possible place to live in, for people of all walks of life and income levels. 

    While doing those, work on being a good person, bringing up the people around me, opening myself to learning from others who know more. Just focus on being a good human in every interaction you have. Seems reasonable. 

    Personally I don't like IT. Literally at all. Its a means to an ends. At a certain age and time in the field you kind of realize.. welp.. I'm the network guy, because the time and pay lag to switch careers and build back to your current exp. and income level would create a time and wealth lag thats unacceptable. So you grind on. Holy s**t life has hit me lol. 

    Anyways, going to hike and then read some from the stoics on a mountain top :) enjoy! 
    CCNP R&S, Security+
    B.S. Geography - Business Minor
    MicroMasters - CyberSecurity
    Professional Certificate - IT Project Management
  • NetworkNewbNetworkNewb Posts: 3,277Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    Personally I don't like IT. Literally at all. Its a means to an ends. At a certain age and time in the field you kind of realize.. welp.. I'm the network guy, because the time and pay lag to switch careers and build back to your current exp. and income level would create a time and wealth lag thats unacceptable. So you grind on. Holy s**t life has hit me lol. 

    That sounds depressing! 
  • tedjamestedjames Scruffy-looking nerfherdr Posts: 1,060Member ■■■■■■■□□□
    When I was a kid, I wanted to be a skydiver. Done that a couple of times... I also wanted to be a tank commander. Never happened. In 8th grade, I decided I wanted to be an architect. In college, I majored in architecture and technical writing (two degrees) and worked at an architecture firm for awhile, but computers lured me away. I worked as a technical writer/editor (software, hardware, gubment), web designer, technical trainer, etc., for years before taking a security technical writer job in 2006. I gradually transitioned into a security analyst position, learning on the job the whole way. I'm 54 now and 5 years from retirement. I'm not stopping, though. I would love to end up as a fulltime penetration tester or researcher. I've never aspired to be a manager, though I've had opportunities. It's more fun and interesting to do the work than to manage it. For those who enjoy management and are good at it, great. We need capable leaders. But it's not my thing. I really don't want to think about where I'll be or what I'll be doing at the end of my career. It's more fun to experiment with multiple ideas and see where that takes me. I'll definitely retire in 5 years so I can start collecting my pension. But I will keep working because I enjoy what I do. Long story short: No endgame for me.
  • Jon_CiscoJon_Cisco Posts: 1,773Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    Having just started my career at age 46 my goal is to keep learning until I retire. Really gainful employment is my end game. Of course we will try different things along the way and some might be better then others.

    I have been a manager twice and don't really enjoy it. If the job requires it I'll do it but I have no expectation of searching out management positions. I liked the idea of moving to the IT field because it is interesting and ever changing. It is something I considered for years and in 2013 I decided to start working toward that goal.
  • DatabaseHeadDatabaseHead CSM, ITIL x3, Teradata Assc, MS SQL Server, Project +, Server +, A+, N+, MS Project, CAPM, RMP Posts: 2,480Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    edited June 23
    Redoing mine so it makes more sense.

    Career change from HR to Supply Chain then IT......   

    And so it starts and hope it ends this way.  Help Desk > Desktop Support >  Desktop/Service Desk Lead > Business Analyst > Senior Business Analyst Manager > SR Business Intelligence Analyst > SR Sales Analyst *Mistake 3 months)  > Enterprise Architect  > Now im thinking ending out, I'm in my EARLY 40's.  Senior Enterprise Architect > Principal for a MSP or some company maybe pre sales hopefully hold that down for 5 - 10 (Hoping to be done with IT between 50 and 55) and then retire go work at a golf course at the best course in the area and get free play on Monday.   (High end courses usually are not available for play on Monday's due to maintenance).  

    Live on the community own a golf cart, the wife can have a car whatever (She's 10 years younger than me and is a specialized nurse making really good money).....    Also get a high end hybrid bike for local commute.  Inherited some money so I have a jump plus been socking away in my 401k for years....   Had to use one once ~5 years of service due to some obligations....    

    That's the plan
  • Neil86Neil86 Posts: 101Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    edited September 27
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