Everything Is Economic

Like every manager, yours has a budget. It provides the resources he [1] needs to accomplish his primary mission, which is to complete the projects assigned to him so he looks good to his manager, that manager looks good to the next manager, and so on up the corporate line. You are simply a quite expensive part of your managers budget. To prosper in your job, you must produce the results your manager expects.

Yes, everything is economic, if only you can see it.

My twin brother, Peter, and Iincoming freshman at Drexel Institute of Technology (now Drexel University)were listening to welcoming speeches in the main auditorium with the freshman class, 80 percent of whom had chosen engineering. My two most vivid recollections of the orientation were that the dean of the engineering school said, Look at the person to the right and left of you; one of you wont make it to your sophomore year. That got my attention. My brother was to the left of me, and the dean was right about the other guy.

We waited for the next speaker, anticipating a thermodynamics professor, a physics professor, or at least a statistics professor . (Drexel didnt have a single computer then; we all had slide rules strapped to our belts.) Instead, out strolled Dr. Davidson, strumming on his guitar and singing that everything is economic. We almost laughed at this business geek. But a mere five years later, when we interviewed for corporate jobs, we realized that Dr. Davidson had it all correct, and in perspective. All our years of intensive college classes were light weapons against the power of the business economics that determined whether there was a good job; the compensation level of that job; and how much competition there was for that job when we finally graduated .

Even in your first programming job you should be aware of the economic realities of corporate compensation; you need to develop a strategy for moving quickly up the corporate compensation ladder. Programmers who focus on advancement are uniquely well positioned in the corporation to move very rapidly up that ladder because of programmings potential dramatic impact on the companys profit and loss.

Programmers can produce significant productivity increases in virtually every aspect of their company. They often save it hundreds of thousands of dollars with a new computerized applicationbut occasionally they cost the company a similar amount by doing less than perfect work. Top management, stockholders , and sometimes the press quickly become aware of the direct effect programmers have on the companys bottom line; thats why programmers are so well compensated.

[1] Many times in this book I use he to refer to a programmer or a managernot because I am implying that every programmer or manager is male, but because the sentence construction makes it awkward to say he or she.

How to Become a Highly Paid Corporate Programmer
How to Become a Highly Paid Corporate Programmer
ISBN: 158347045X
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2003
Pages: 162

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