Information Technology means – well many things to a diverse group of people. In order to be good at I.T. you must enjoy solving puzzles. But these are not the typical puzzles with only a few 500-1000 pieces, these are puzzles that require knowledge of supporting infrastructure and how things fall into place; providing user management, collaboration, and security.
So how do you get started in information technology? That’s a tough question.
In my case, I spent the last 20 years in the school of hard knocks; learning and educating me about technologies that helped businesses grow. I was not the typical gamer that you may picture as an I.T. geek. I enjoyed networking and building skills to become better organized to help me through my personal and professional life.
Obviously, not everyone has the same experiences but we can lay some basic stepping stones to get started on the right path to a solid career in I.T.
Here are my suggestions for starting a career in information technology.
- Seek an internship at a reputable company
- An internship at Google, Microsoft or your local I.T. service firm can open doors.
- Get to know the right people
- Most engineers enjoy helping others get started.
- Supplement self-taught skills with a few classes, certifications, or degrees and move into the job market.
- The more education you get… the more valuable you are going to be to an employer.
- Employers look for certifications so they feel secure you know what you are doing with something they know little about.
- As your certifications grow so will your market value and your income.
- Even without a college degree, a MSCE or A+, or CCNA can gain you significant credibility.
- Write a competitive resume and list it at prominent internet job sites
- Don’t limit yourself to a geographic region.
Remember that there are entry level jobs for people with little formal education in the information technology industry. Take the best entry level job you can get and in your spare time, focus on honing your skills and keeping up with the latest technology trends.
Lastly, and possibly most importantly, understand how to communicate with others. The most crucial skillset of any career is communication. Make yourself available by sharing your knowledge and offering solutions in a simple and effective manner to people of every level of education and position.
The path to a successful career in I.T. starts with you taking one step at a time.