I work for Oracle as a technical consultant. After 18 months in the job and a promotion I'm feeling a bit bored with the development side of things. I'd like to be in charge of people doing the development but really don't enjoy programming myself. I am very out-going and don't feel I was born to sit in front of a computer all day. My problem is I'm not aware of the jobs that are out there that would suit me. I would like to be in a more managerial role with lots of people contact and team working but think 18 months is too little to be a project manager! I am considering a move out of IT altogether but it seems a shame to waste all my training. Can you suggest roles that might be more suited to me bearing in mind I didn't do a management or business degree?
Don't send out the wrong message
Let me start by suggesting a note of caution. I am assuming that this is your first job, and changing after only 18 months can send out the wrong messages to future employers. This may not be immediately apparent, but in later life could come back to haunt you.
You have already been promoted and have the distinct advantage of working for a major IT company, so one can assume that you are being well trained, progressing well and that your employer is reasonably satisfied with your work.
The type of work you appear to be looking for will involve working with other people much more, either as part of your team or customers. I suggest that you investigate qualifications that relate to "people skills" particularly in a business context. Qualifications such as an NVQ in management, MBA or modules from the Open University might be a good starting point. Although these qualifications are by no means mandatory, they will help you migrate to other occupational areas.
However, before talking with your manager, see what opportunities there may be within your company. Don't be put off by having to spend a few more months in your existing role. The skills you are learning will ensure solid foundation for your future aspirations. Frequently when employers look for "people skills" they also mean "business skills" so time spent acquiring these is never wasted.
Solution provided by Gordon Greaves, director of standards and qualifications at the IT National Training Organisation
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