Sharad Sharma was General Manager, VERITAS India. He has immense
experience in the Telecom and Software industry. These are tips excerpted from
an interview with him aired on Bangalore's RadioCity,
|Tips on Building Successful Technical Career
Do checkout Sharads blog too at Orbit Change - a favorite business
blog of mine.
Building a Successful Technical Career involves working with cutting edge technology and building high performance technology organizations.
One should be globally competetive in ones field of work.
Push yourself, not in a corrosive or destructive way but in a good way - set
an achievable goal for yourself and then plan and meet that goal over time.
One thing people should add to their drive, ambition and
discipline is long term perspective. As half life of software
becomes shorter over time, people must take the long term perspective. This is
counter intuitive and hence difficult to do. Note
that the Warren Buffet's of the world, rather than the day traders, make money
in a volatile market.
Plan your career in 7-10 year horizons. Pick an industry trend and not
technology trend. Align yourself with an industry trend.
Reducing risk in managing information is a trend that will stay for some time
to come. This will be achieved by enhancing security, increasing availability
of systems and reducing complexity. Usability engineering and systems
management will be important. Reducing costs will be important, so will India.
On choosing the right course : Transition from one
S curve to
curve - taking a course can
accelerate that transition. For example transitioning from being a developer to
a project manager will benefit from a management course.
Identify where in the value chain do you want to be : Sophisticated End user
Organization (ICICI Bank), Consulting
Services (MindTree Consulting), Product
Engineering organization (VERITAS).
Invest in yourself. All good companies will encourage you to do that.
In terms of strengths, people tend to be Inch Deep and Mile Wide, or Mile Deep
and Inch Wide, both profiles can be improved upon. The right combination is a
T profile - depth in core area, overlayed with industry context - the
top part of the T.
Software is a team sport - soft skills and communication skills are
important, particularly written communication skills. Having a Personal Code
of Conduct is most important. Say what you mean and do what you said you
would. Be proactive in sharing both good news and bad news.
At the end of the day, produce results and not reasons.
Sharad's Formula : Take a long term view, invest in yourself, and be nice to others.
The Mountaineering Analogy : Its better not to aim at Mount Everest to begin
with, but to aim for an achievable target. You need to plan for the trek, and
you need a team. You need the mental strength and stamina to overcome
inevitable problems on the way. Reaching the peak should make you feel good not
for having beaten other people, but for having
beaten your own limitations.
Author : Sharad Sharma (Excerpts)
Message in Public Interest