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Colleagues, My assistant passed this to me, and I thought it had the makings of a wonderful Friday afternoon post. Question: Do you know what the #1 most-hated job is? Answer: Director of Information Technology Source:http://finance.yahoo.com/career-work/article/113308/10-most-hated-jobs-cnbc Perhaps not the most scientifically rigorous survey…but certainly worth a chuckle Happy Weekend, Gary Roberts Director of Information Technology Services Alfred University ********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.

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Gary, My wife pointed this out to me. If you followed the article closer. Four or five of the top ten jobs were in the technology field. Clearly, they didn't work at our universities. We all LOVE our jobs. -dp DP Harris, Phd-Vice President LOMA LINDA UNIVERSITY | Information Services 11139 Anderson Street, Loma Linda, California 92350 (909) 558-7600 dpharris@llu.edu
As I read this, I connect article ideas with conversations I've had with staff members.  It seems that many people appreciate a path to their career; they value the ability to "move up", and they want their employer to define that path.

But our organizations are pyramids, and the ability to continue to move up throughout your career may be limited.  I've had folks come in and say to me "I'm dead-ended in my career path.  That makes this a terrible place to work."

I respond that I'm dead-ended at the university too, in the context that they present.  But I don't feel that it is the university's fault - or even a problem that the university needs to fix.  After all, I'm not a tenured member of the faculty; I cannot aspire to become Provost.  I don't have the qualifications to become President.  I can still have many aspirations, but I am responsible for acting on those aspirations, whether that means getting more education, expanding my credentials or applying for jobs outside the university.  And there's plenty of work to volunteer to take on within the university. 

How do you folks handle the disappointed employee who feels there's a lack of opportunity to move up?

Theresa 

Excellent points Theresa. I’ve often cogitated about this as well….

 

One thing seem apparent…and that  is many (not all) of the staff just entering the field seem to be like pro basketball players and make a lot of money, drive fancy cars, have luxury items without putting in much time…. The comment may be “an old man’s” lament but we all know parents and friends of parents that worked hard, bought and lived just fine in modest homes and have excellent lives….If you really hate your job, your boss, where you work….do something else…one final thought, I went to college in the late 1960s at the U. Miami (the one in Florida) just after the Cuban crisis. The emigrants from Cuba where all professional, physicians, teachers, lawyers. And they were working in Miami in entry level “menial” jobs, like cab drivers. Interesting though, within 3 to 5 years they owned the cab company….They knew how to work and work hard….

 

Best,

Rob

 

 

 

Dr. Robert Paterson

Vice President, Information Technology, Planning & Research

Molloy College

Rockville Centre, NY 11571

516-678-5000 ex 6443

 

From: The EDUCAUSE CIO Constituent Group Listserv [mailto:CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU] On Behalf Of Theresa Rowe
Sent: Monday, September 19, 2011 2:26 PM
To: CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU
Subject: Re: [CIO] The Most Hated Job?

 

As I read this, I connect article ideas with conversations I've had with staff members.  It seems that many people appreciate a path to their career; they value the ability to "move up", and they want their employer to define that path.

But our organizations are pyramids, and the ability to continue to move up throughout your career may be limited.  I've had folks come in and say to me "I'm dead-ended in my career path.  That makes this a terrible place to work."

I respond that I'm dead-ended at the university too, in the context that they present.  But I don't feel that it is the university's fault - or even a problem that the university needs to fix.  After all, I'm not a tenured member of the faculty; I cannot aspire to become Provost.  I don't have the qualifications to become President.  I can still have many aspirations, but I am responsible for acting on those aspirations, whether that means getting more education, expanding my credentials or applying for jobs outside the university.  And there's plenty of work to volunteer to take on within the university. 

How do you folks handle the disappointed employee who feels there's a lack of opportunity to move up?

Theresa 

Universities are not technology companies, they are educational institutions.  Thus, they cannot offer the depth of IT career ladder available at a "pure technology" company (although we often offer great diversity in our IT shops); our university IT organizations are leaner and flatter.  Obviously, we often don't have multiple layers of developers, senior developers, analysts, project managers, product managers, area managers, etc. that a global technology firm can offer.

Ultimately, a young or mid-career IT employee who wants to "move up" while remaining in IT may be forced to look outside the university to do that, if to them moving up means a transition in a formal hierarchy.  At the university we offer broad opportunities to expand roles and contributions and make an impact on the organization in a wide variety of ways outside the narrow confines of a job description, as well as the other benefits of university life, but otherwise, not only are our organizations pyramids, they're not tall pyramids.

~Mike

Michael Dieckmann * Chief Information Officer * University of West Florida * 11000 University Parkway, Pensacola, FL  32514 *   Office 850.474.2558 * FAX 850.474.2634 * MichaelDieckmann@uwf.edu * uwf.edu




We live in an age of immediate gratification. If I do not get what I want it is the institution's fault, my boss, my wife, if I only.... The fact is that my father walked from the north part of Manhattan to Battery Park City with two heavy suit cases in the 70s when Manhattan was not safe. He did not worry about a dead end job, he worried about a quarter to get on the subway or to spend the quarter on a luxury item such as a Coca Cola on 90 degree summer day. What my parents taught me and what I try to transfer to those who work with me and for me is that no one sets your course/path. You are limited by you, your fears, your strength, your eagerness. Success is not given, anointed it reaped through toil,sweat, blood and boldness. So I concur with Rob, but also explain that the path is through labor.

"It is only through labor and painful effort, by grim energy and resolute courage, that we move on to better things."
-THEODORE ROOSEVELT




Best regards,
NIH






    Queens College, CUNY | 65-30 Kissena Blvd, Flushing NY 11367-1597
    718-997-3009 | Fax: 718-997-5678 | Cell: 917-642-3946 |naveed.husain@qc.cuny.edu|skype: defero-nih
    PThink before you print-


Robert Paterson ---09/19/2011 02:39:18 PM---Excellent points Theresa. I've often cogitated about this as well.... One thing seem apparent...and

From: Robert Paterson <rpaterson@MOLLOY.EDU>
To: CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU
Date: 09/19/2011 02:39 PM
Subject: Re: [CIO] The Most Hated Job?
Sent by: The EDUCAUSE CIO Constituent Group Listserv <CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU>



Excellent points Theresa. I’ve often cogitated about this as well….

One thing seem apparent…and that is many (not all) of the staff just entering the field seem to be like pro basketball players and make a lot of money, drive fancy cars, have luxury items without putting in much time…. The comment may be “an old man’s” lament but we all know parents and friends of parents that worked hard, bought and lived just fine in modest homes and have excellent lives….If you really hate your job, your boss, where you work….do something else…one final thought, I went to college in the late 1960s at the U. Miami (the one in Florida) just after the Cuban crisis. The emigrants from Cuba where all professional, physicians, teachers, lawyers. And they were working in Miami in entry level “menial” jobs, like cab drivers. Interesting though, within 3 to 5 years they owned the cab company….They knew how to work and work hard….

Best,
Rob



Dr. Robert Paterson
Vice President, Information Technology, Planning & Research
Molloy College
Rockville Centre, NY 11571
516-678-5000 ex 6443

From: The EDUCAUSE CIO Constituent Group Listserv [mailto:CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU] On Behalf Of Theresa Rowe
Sent:
Monday, September 19, 2011 2:26 PM
To:
CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU
Subject:
Re: [CIO] The Most Hated Job?

As I read this, I connect article ideas with conversations I've had with staff members. It seems that many people appreciate a path to their career; they value the ability to "move up", and they want their employer to define that path.

But our organizations are pyramids, and the ability to continue to move up throughout your career may be limited. I've had folks come in and say to me "I'm dead-ended in my career path. That makes this a terrible place to work."

I respond that I'm dead-ended at the university too, in the context that they present. But I don't feel that it is the university's fault - or even a problem that the university needs to fix. After all, I'm not a tenured member of the faculty; I cannot aspire to become Provost. I don't have the qualifications to become President. I can still have many aspirations, but I am responsible for acting on those aspirations, whether that means getting more education, expanding my credentials or applying for jobs outside the university. And there's plenty of work to volunteer to take on within the university.

How do you folks handle the disappointed employee who feels there's a lack of opportunity to move up?

Theresa
As a "young" and "mid-career" IT employee who has several other employees reporting to them, it is not necessarily the ladder-climbing that is at issue.  Having worked in the corporate confines as well as in higher-ed, I feel qualified to point out the differences.  Most IT staff (myself included) are like children - we like toys and we like rewards for jobs well done.  Very few are looking towards becoming the CIO, Provost, or President.  However, we still want something other than a pat on the back.  Within the corporate arena, there are tangible outcomes for doing well - bonuses, trips, conferences, pay increases, stock options.  It is fairly straight forward in that if you help increase the bottom line, you participate in the rewards.

In higher-ed, we do not have a profit margin (at least not one that gets shared with employees).  What we used to have was a flexible schedule, fewer work days as a result of a closed campus, less stress, and offices (versus cubicle in corporate arena).  In exchange, we get paid less.  However, in the past 10 years I have witnessed a transition.  My staff work as many days as their corporate counterparts, they are on call 24x7, they are office sharing or in cubicles, and they have not seen a pay raise in 3 years due to the "economy."  What I have seen is the transformation of higher-ed IT having the same expectations and requirements of corporate IT but at lower pay and no monetary perks (bonuses, options, etc.).  Granted, if we want to expand our horizons, we can "volunteer" for other duties and responsibilities, but there will be no increased compensation and there will be increased responsibility and stress. 

I realize that the above is not new to anyone on this list.  I am also aware it is slightly "whiny" - but nonetheless true.  However, I do think there is a solution of sorts.

I am a huge fan of Tony Hsieh and his accomplishments with Zappos.  If you haven't read the book, I highly encourage you to do so.  At Zappos, they have created a channel of sorts for their buyers.  It is well defined and provides for regular progress.  I suggest the same for IT in higher-ed.  We need a plan whereby we can hire young/less experienced IT workers at a lower salary and put them to work on our Help Desks.  As they gain experience and management analyzes their strengths, they begin channeling them to towards the appropriate job.  This analysis could happen every 18 months.  A sample is below:

0 - 18 months - Help Desk Analyst I
18 - 36 months - Help Desk Analyst II
36 - 54 months - Help Desk Analyst III
54 months - is this person a candidate for either
A) Help Desk Management
B) Systems Analyst
C) Network Analyst
D) Project Manager
E) Wants to stay on help desk without management tack

At this point, Options A, D, and E begin the 24-month review.  Options B and C continue on 18-month review.  After achieving Network Analyst III, then again a review of management track or continue on technical track.  Under this program, you would take the most aggressive IT person from Help Desk Analyst I up through Network Analyst III in about 10.5 years.  At this point, you have a loyal, competent employee and the campus has benefited from their dedication.  The employee has reaped regular rewards in the way of title changes and salary (salary can obviously be within what the institution can afford, but always within reach of local, corporate standards) and is more likely to be satisfied and dedicated.  

This allows for clear growth AND salary increases while allowing a campus to be replacing people who leave at the beginning of the chain where it is less expensive because you should have someone in the chute ready to take the place of the senior network analyst or senior programmer who left for Silicon Valley.

However, the "old" paradigm of expecting the crotchety sever admin to stay at the same level, in the same position, with little to no monetary reward for 20 years is gone.  I don't know any IT people on my campus who see themselves in the same positions in 10 years.  AT THE SAME TIME, very few of them want to be in management.  What they want is a clear definition of what's possible in 10 years and that they'll be rewarded (again, with salary) for their accomplishments.

Just my 20 cents (adjusted for inflation).

Tim Crouch
Associate Director
Networks and Operations
The University of Texas at Tyler
(903) 566-7476
From: The EDUCAUSE CIO Constituent Group Listserv [CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU] on behalf of Michael Dieckmann [MichaelDieckmann@UWF.EDU]
Sent: Monday, September 19, 2011 2:01 PM
To: CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU
Subject: Re: [CIO] The Most Hated Job?

Universities are not technology companies, they are educational institutions.  Thus, they cannot offer the depth of IT career ladder available at a "pure technology" company (although we often offer great diversity in our IT shops); our university IT organizations are leaner and flatter.  Obviously, we often don't have multiple layers of developers, senior developers, analysts, project managers, product managers, area managers, etc. that a global technology firm can offer.

Ultimately, a young or mid-career IT employee who wants to "move up" while remaining in IT may be forced to look outside the university to do that, if to them moving up means a transition in a formal hierarchy.  At the university we offer broad opportunities to expand roles and contributions and make an impact on the organization in a wide variety of ways outside the narrow confines of a job description, as well as the other benefits of university life, but otherwise, not only are our organizations pyramids, they're not tall pyramids.

~Mike

Michael Dieckmann * Chief Information Officer * University of West Florida * 11000 University Parkway, Pensacola, FL  32514 *   Office 850.474.2558 * FAX 850.474.2634 * MichaelDieckmann@uwf.edu * uwf.edu




I do see value in this kind of mobility, but on my campus, we are extraordinarily constrained by the "position control" mentality.  Does anyone have an organization like this?
Theresa

Message from jj014747@pomona.edu

I disagree with the philosophy of using the Help Desk as the "foot in the door".  I think this is a huge mistake and probably contributes to the Help Desk having inconsistencies when it comes to professionalism and customer service.   It may be difficult to understand but there are indeed people who not only excel at first line of support but, because of their excellence, provide protection, feedback and resources for the rest of your organization.

I know a lot of organizations rely on student workers to provide first level of support so there's not much that can be done if the budget does not allow an investment in full-time professionals there.

(just had to toss my two cents in there)

Regarding "upward mobility", I think we tend to get trained to the thinking that if one does not receive a promotion, one must be dissatisfied with one's job.  Or if one doesn't get that annual increase, there's a level of dissatisfaction.  For me, I look for the next challenge, the next area for improvement.  I try to understand what my staff members want: challenge, mobility, advancement, rewards?  And in what percentage?  


Julianne Journitz
Director of Client Services
Information Technology Services
Pomona College
24x7 assistance: http://helpdesk.pomona.edu
ITS Website: http://its.pomona.edu
ITS Twitter Updates: http://www.twitter.com/pomonahelp


From: Theresa Rowe <rowe@OAKLAND.EDU>
Reply-To: The EDUCAUSE CIO Constituent Group Listserv <CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU>
Date: Mon, 19 Sep 2011 12:45:03 -0700
To: "CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU" <CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU>
Subject: Re: [CIO] The Most Hated Job?

I do see value in this kind of mobility, but on my campus, we are extraordinarily constrained by the "position control" mentality.  Does anyone have an organization like this?
Theresa

Job satisfaction is a very interesting topic. While promotions and upward mobility is very important, I think a sense of mission is even more important. When I go to work, I do not think of how I can become the president of the university. I do think of how I can positively impact the careers of thousands of students. My mission is to provide a positive learning environment for the students and a power teaching environment for the faculty. If the environment I create helps a student become a doctor, or a business man, or a teacher, or another other type of professional and this professional is able to help make other’s lives better, I feel I have done my job well. Sometimes this gets me into trouble as my vision of how to do this often comes into conflict with the resistance to change. That is where the dissatisfaction comes into play. Since a top technology officer is often the creator of a disruptive force (or at least viewed as the leader of such a movement), we are often the target of attacks and discontent. I have observed that the source of the pressure to change is often from peers. This pressure to change may not be a mandate to change, but since the pressure is exists they target the resistance towards IT instead of the co-worker. God bless, Sam Young Chief Information Officer Point Loma Nazarene University Individualization ~ Achiever ~ Learner ~ Belief ~ Activator ________________________________ From: Naveed Husain Reply-To: The EDUCAUSE CIO Constituent Group Listserv Date: Mon, 19 Sep 2011 11:57:58 -0700 To: "CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU" Subject: Re: [CIO] The Most Hated Job? We live in an age of immediate gratification. If I do not get what I want it is the institution's fault, my boss, my wife, if I only.... The fact is that my father walked from the north part of Manhattan to Battery Park City with two heavy suit cases in the 70s when Manhattan was not safe. He did not worry about a dead end job, he worried about a quarter to get on the subway or to spend the quarter on a luxury item such as a Coca Cola on 90 degree summer day. What my parents taught me and what I try to transfer to those who work with me and for me is that no one sets your course/path. You are limited by you, your fears, your strength, your eagerness. Success is not given, anointed it reaped through toil,sweat, blood and boldness. So I concur with Rob, but also explain that the path is through labor. "It is only through labor and painful effort, by grim energy and resolute courage, that we move on to better things." -THEODORE ROOSEVELT Best regards, NIH [cid:3399293399_1884337] Naveed I. Husain, PMP | Chief Information Officer | Office of Converging Technologies Queens College, CUNY | 65-30 Kissena Blvd, Flushing NY 11367-1597 718-997-3009 | Fax: 718-997-5678 | Cell: 917-642-3946 |naveed.husain@qc.cuny.edu|skype: defero-nih PThink before you print- [cid:3399293399_1857378]Robert Paterson ---09/19/2011 02:39:18 PM---Excellent points Theresa. I've often cogitated about this as well.... One thing seem apparent...and From: Robert Paterson To: CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU Date: 09/19/2011 02:39 PM Subject: Re: [CIO] The Most Hated Job? Sent by: The EDUCAUSE CIO Constituent Group Listserv ________________________________ Excellent points Theresa. I’ve often cogitated about this as well…. One thing seem apparent…and that is many (not all) of the staff just entering the field seem to be like pro basketball players and make a lot of money, drive fancy cars, have luxury items without putting in much time…. The comment may be “an old man’s” lament but we all know parents and friends of parents that worked hard, bought and lived just fine in modest homes and have excellent lives….If you really hate your job, your boss, where you work….do something else…one final thought, I went to college in the late 1960s at the U. Miami (the one in Florida) just after the Cuban crisis. The emigrants from Cuba where all professional, physicians, teachers, lawyers. And they were working in Miami in entry level “menial” jobs, like cab drivers. Interesting though, within 3 to 5 years they owned the cab company….They knew how to work and work hard…. Best, Rob Dr. Robert Paterson Vice President, Information Technology, Planning & Research Molloy College Rockville Centre, NY 11571 516-678-5000 ex 6443 From: The EDUCAUSE CIO Constituent Group Listserv [mailto:CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU] On Behalf Of Theresa Rowe Sent: Monday, September 19, 2011 2:26 PM To: CIO@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU Subject: Re: [CIO] The Most Hated Job? As I read this, I connect article ideas with conversations I've had with staff members. It seems that many people appreciate a path to their career; they value the ability to "move up", and they want their employer to define that path. But our organizations are pyramids, and the ability to continue to move up throughout your career may be limited. I've had folks come in and say to me "I'm dead-ended in my career path. That makes this a terrible place to work." I respond that I'm dead-ended at the university too, in the context that they present. But I don't feel that it is the university's fault - or even a problem that the university needs to fix. After all, I'm not a tenured member of the faculty; I cannot aspire to become Provost. I don't have the qualifications to become President. I can still have many aspirations, but I am responsible for acting on those aspirations, whether that means getting more education, expanding my credentials or applying for jobs outside the university. And there's plenty of work to volunteer to take on within the university. How do you folks handle the disappointed employee who feels there's a lack of opportunity to move up? Theresa
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