I will be straight to the point. The purpose of Lessons Learned is to convey all the earthly wisdom I somehow managed to accumulate over forty years of work. Go ahead, and create the stereotypical picture of an old guy, sitting in a lazy boy before the fireplace or marching around the park. And he is saying, “You know, when I was your age ……”
But when you think about your own experience, I can bet that you have had some role models who set the bar. If you haven’t, I hope someone comes along. I was lucky. These people weren’t saints. These were, after all, professionals who practiced their craft. Their objective was to do their job well. They may not have had a blog that spelled out their list of lessons learned. But they left an impression nonetheless. Some of what they demonstrated will appear in the coming pages.
Being in IT presented some interesting challenges. For most of my professional life I have had to contend with technical and human challenges that had no textbook to follow. One of the most laughable things in IT was the “terminal degree,” as if getting a Masters Degree would amount to anything relevant five years later. I, and the people I worked with, had to deal with constant change. While it is true that previous generations had to deal with advancements in technology, it was nothing compared to the world we went through in the last fifty years. The smartphone that I carry in my hand today has the processing power of a computer that inhabited the entire basement of a building in the year I was born. It is interesting to note that in the world my father grew up in, a computer was a job description.
So I learned a few things along the way. When I look over the list, most of the lessons learned were in the IT field, but the lessons have more to do with human nature than the technology itself. For that reason, whether you are flipping hamburgers, cutting lawns, welding, plumbing, navigating a ship or serving as a county clerk, the lessons I learned apply to you as well. Hope you enjoy what I write and your comments are always welcome.
© Copyright 2023 to Eric Niewoehner
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