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  1. Senior Member Danielh22185's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    DFW Area
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    1,158

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    CCNP R&S, CCNA, CCENT
    #1

    Default I've Been in a Slump...Need Some Focus Alignment

    So I recently started a new job just back at the end of April, which has been great for me. I basically put any kind of self-study of any kind on hold while I got adjusted to the new gig. My previous goals were to go straight in IE after getting NP but with a new job comes new responsibilities and goals. Now I am feeling a bit more adjusted and comfortable but also want to be providing value to the org (I literally have a few changes going each week to make improvements).

    Previously (and now) our network operation has been very low tech at best. We didn't really even have a change control process in place prior to me stepping in (which I have developed into a decent early state), and automation is near non-existant. I can see we stand to make some serious strides on implementing basic and automated tools into our operation. I seem to be the sole driver of this focus too as my peer who is a 10 year veteran (which I get the feeling of he'd rather just coast along in his day) doesn't really yet see the value of my ideas the way I do. I have cracked him on a few things but it will be an ongoing process to get him on board in other areas, that will just come in time.

    However, I seem to have lost focus on what I should really be focusing on for my next cert / overall skills development as a Network Engineer. With this new job I really feel like I can title myself as a true Network Engineer finally. It is now my direct responsibility to review, develop, and implement network solutions. My previous job in networking did not have as much depth.

    With my job and the items of value I see I can help provide I feel I should place my focus heavily into that for now (automation, toolset development, etc) I have seen a lot about network automation / programability, so I have taken a bit of that up and learned at a very basic level some general Python stuff via David Bombal's video series: (I have even made some crude implementations via Python which has saved me big time doing specific repetitive tasks, yet I know my scripts/iterations and methods could use some serious improvements)

    https://www.youtube.com/user/ConfigTerm/videos

    I guess what I am really trying to convey here is I'm struggling with trying to focus on what I need to focus on. I see a big need at work for the items described. I think it would be good to learn those in-depth and provide value in that way to my org. I honestly don't see a value in chasing after CCIE (at least not for my company at present time, it would be more of a personal goal right now). Honestly, I see more value in understanding other general networking concepts better like design, wireless, collab, etc, chasing after a NA/NP level cert in those areas is even more applicable to my current situatuon.

    Maybe once I am able to make some headway on the items described I can circle back on IE content. My previous job was VERY intensive route / switch daily troubleshooting which an IE in R/S would have made perfect sense. Now my new job I feel like more like a developer on a level of making the operation better while still also keeping the network state in constant review and looking to implement better solutions.

    Thoughts?
    Currently Studying: IE Stuff...kinda...for now...
    My ultimate career goal: To climb to the top of the computer network industry food chain.
    "Winning means you're willing to go longer, work harder, and give more than anyone else." - Vince Lombardi
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  2. Member Nutsy's Avatar
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    Mar 2013
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    Null0
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    70

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    CCIE DC/R&S Written, CCDP, CCNP-DC/RS, CCDA, CCNA-DC/RS/S, Security+, Network+, ITILv3F, BIG-IP F5-CA, VCA6-NV, and VCP6-NV
    #2
    When you start a new job, your focus should be on getting up to speed with that your employer needs/wants. (Which you stated you have done.) Since you are up to speed, the great question of do you solely pursue what your employer wants vs what you want.

    1) If you need to learn more on Design/Wireless/Collab then go and do that. Most people deploy solutions that they are not certified on.
    2) Where do you want your career to go?
    3) Ultimately, unless working at Cisco, or a VAR, your work cares about producing results, not certs.
    4) You be the driver of your career, not your employer. If you need to chase a technology at work that you are not excited about, and don't want to get a cert, that's fine. When you get off, go and pursue what you care about.
    5) Chasing automation to get rid of the boring stuff is a good long term answer. Thus, if the automation solutions frees real time off of your daily schedule, and you can pursue other professional development, it's worth it.

    HTH
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