Thursday, January 24, 2008


Enterprise Architecture: So, what will be my next position?

Over the last couple of days, folks have asked me why I continue to do my same position and haven't changed employers. I figured I would answer this question publicly...

Usually when one changes employers, they hope to make some aspect of what they don't like go away. This change almost always results in higher compensation which is further stimulus to make things happen. For me, while I understand that pretty much every single one of my industry peers is compensated more than me, I am not savage in pursuit of more money.

The one thing I miss from my consulting days was the opportunity to interact with different people every single day. As an enterprise architect, one gets pretty good at selling. The problem though is that you sell to the same people every single day. Whatever I am pitching today, will change tomorrow but the target of the pitch remains the same. The only solution to this problem would be to figure out the equivalent position for a large software company such as Microsoft or Oracle where I can not only pitch different problem spaces but also pitch to different people.

Some have asked why I have returned to consulting. After all, the billing rates would literally let me earn more than double of what I currently make as a salary. The funny thing is that I enjoyed consulting but really hate travellingcommuting. You may notice that some folks use the word travel and commute interchangeably but I choose not to. If you asked me to fly from Hartford to Dallas next week and then to Denver the following, I would consider this traveling and not have any issues with it. However, if you asked me to fly to Chicago every week for a six month assignment, I would consider this commuting and would immediately run in the opposite direction.

So, the characteristics of my next position need to have lots of variety. I always figured that one of the better opportunities for me would be to be the leader of the security practice for a consulting firm such as Cognizant, Accenture or Wipro where I run the entire security practice for the Americas and the regional partners/chief architects report up to me.

There are times where becoming an industry analyst is appealing. The ability to have hundreds of distinct conversations with folks who work for hundreds of enterprises is fascinating. I also like the idea that many industry analysts work from home. On a side note, isn't it kinda interesting that most enterprises can outsource to countries thousands of miles away let don't have good programs for allowing their own employees to work from home more often.

I suspect that one characteristic of the ideal position is that I need to be recruited instead of just applying. The notion of a hiring manager tracking me down is very compelling. If you want me, I want you. I guess applying means that I have to sell my value proposition where recruiting means that you have already figured it out...

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