Looking Ahead - Would you retire from tech?

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I've been working in "tech" for over 15 years now and I still love it. I don't believe that there are many out there that can honestly claim they love what they do after so long.

I believe that part of this is because information technology, as a field, is extremely diverse. Over the years, I've worked with hardware (servers, networking, infrastructure, logistics), software (management, diagnostics),development (client, web), training, project management, and pretty much everything in between.

To be able to bounce between all of these opportunities and work in positions that combine aspects of each keeps my attention and allows me to constantly learn.

But what about what's next? I always try to keep a "1,3,5 Plan"--one year out, three years out, and five years out. Nothing concrete, but goals and ideas for the future.

A few folks on Twitter recently had an interesting, well, public discussion, about what they plan to do 'next.' Many noted that it probably wouldn't involve technology. That got me to thinking--what would I do if I passed by technology in a couple of years?

Jokingly, there are times that I think my outdoors obsession would better suit me to being a lawn care professional or horticulturalist rather than a developer. I also love woodworking and building furniture so carpentry would be exciting.

Why do I like those fields? Easy. They allow me to be creative, work with my hands, and, when the weather is nice (this is Kansas, there's a limited number of nice days) be outside. 2 of the 3 of those are the same reasons I like development and computers. Coincidence? I doubt it.

As with most hobbyist-turned-professional endeavors, if I had to work at something I enjoyed (making someone a bookcase or mowing someone else's yard), I'd probably revolt in a heart beat. Oddly, information technology has never made me feel that way--even though I am both a hobbyist and a professional.

So, as Clarkson might say, on that bombshell, perhaps my next non-tech career will simply be a change in focus--perhaps a non-development career. There are so many opportunities out there, I'm sure there are hats I've yet to wear and I'm excited to find those, put them on, and dig in for the next chapter in my career.

For now, I have a grand adventure with Tracky that I enthusiastically charge into each day.

  • retirement
  • burnout
  • career
  • planning
author photo - David Longnecker by David Longnecker

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