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Wednesday, March 19, 2003

To do or not to do - that is the question

Am still going through the motions of deciding on what I want to do next. My career seems to have reached a stagnant point. Looking back, its been real nice this far - but where does the road lead from here. I had it all planned to this point; just didn't spend enough time on planning hereon. 10 years back when I thought about what I wanted to do 10 years hence, this is exactly what I wanted to do. I still remember some folks back then scoffing at the idea of me getting to this point this fast - and maybe they would have been proven right if not for the dotcom boom. Dame Fortune walks by me so often that I am beginning to think she enjoys my company! :)

Thinking back on the FoxBASE and FoxPRO days, those were the best days I spent in the technical arena. The days I spent at Oracle were fun - but had less responsibility given that it was a big team spread across 3 continents. Then came the move to the "land of opportunities" and true to the phrase, first week into the new job I got to do what I had wanted to do - Functional Consulting with the added responsibility of Project Management - now that was something I hadn't considered at all. I took it on with a relish and it was soon one project after another - given how fast everyone wanted to get an online presence and capitalise on the boom. And then there was the product management experience. The Content Management product sure has a lot to offer. Hope it sees the light of day soon. Good experience, but now when I look back on it, I guess I moved through the different domains too soon and today what I am is a Jack of all trades and a master of none. And hands-on developing is something left behind in my past. Almost sounds like a past life. So here I am now, turning down possible projects and risking my career and taking a break from it all pondering what I should do next to get back on the right tracks again. I don't want to get caught up in the rapid flow of years again and a couple years from now look back and regret not having made the changes when I could have. So the plan is to ensure I am getting into what I really want to do before I go for it. Till then am going to enjoy my vacation and plan on the side and burn my savings! :)

Thoughts this far: For some time I guess I will still stick to the IT field. I was planning on moving to strategy management sometime around now after a MBA in one of the good schools. But for some reason I don't feel as ambitious anymore as I did a few years back. Not that I am less passionate now; its just the ambition to lead and eventually run a company that has simmered down. More on that some other time. For now, as a first step I guess I should work on focussing on a specific skillset as I used to during the FoxBASE days. All thoughts and research and interests point to EAI, CRM and ERP in that order. Have been doing some reading up on EAI and find it really interesting. Amazing to read about the mess we have left in the wake of building applications after applications. I would blame it on the rush to get things done today and leaving tomorrow for another day. It is the not thinking through that always comes back to bite us. Isn't that true of most everything. Well, lets hope I don't end up the same way and hope I get the thinking through right. :)


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