IT Worker Wonderland

By Deborah Rothberg  |  Posted 2006-12-22 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

eWEEK investigates what makes a good IT job a great one, from the mouths of the happy workers themselves.

When the majority of people talk about work, it's almost undoubtedly followed up with a complaint. From "Dilbert" comics to the movie "Office Space," the grumblings are remarkably similar: too little pay, too many hours, no respect, bad chairs, mean bosses, stifled creativity, under-funded projects, lousy equipment and an assault of busy work.

Hearing enough of these grievances aired, it a wonder that workers don't quit their jobs daily. Is the entire workforce this malcontent in their daily grinds or do only the squeaky wheels get attention?

Last month, eWEEK editorial asked more than a dozen IT professionals about the worst job they'd ever had and the seemingly most unusual thing happened: More than two-thirds came back saying they hadn't had an IT job they didn't like.

Had eWEEK stumbled upon a rare, unstudied breed of technology professional? Did these employees have no bosses, rake in millions or have 26 weeks of vacation a year? What could make such a large percentage of workers attach such positive feelings to their work?

When questioned further, their responses were remarkably unremarkable, but not because they were dull. Management support and treating workers like competent professionals doesn't seem like rocket science, and yet it is uncommon enough in the workplace that it is hailed as bonus when employees run into it.

Click here to read more about what's on tap for IT pros in 2007.

Below, eWEEK investigates what makes a good IT job a great one, from the mouths of the happy workers themselves.

Respectful Management

Kevin Wilson, product line management of the desktop and mobile division of Charlotte's Duke Energy cites management support and encouragement, says being treated like a competent professional and having adequate funding are among the things that he likes about his IT job.

"What makes it great is management support and encouragement for what you are charged with doing. Your are treated like a competent professional that is fully capable of realizing and setting priorities, as well as knowing what has to be done and when. Adequate funding is available without minute spending pre-approval," said Wilson.

Wilson notes that he's had to earn many of these opportunities; his managers have a comfort level with his talents because they recognize the levels he is able to operate on, he says.

Next Page: Worker support, integration, culture.



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