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General Chat Thread, Progressing career in General; Wasn't too sure where to put this so please move if neccessary I've been working at a college as an ...
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    Progressing career

    Wasn't too sure where to put this so please move if neccessary

    I've been working at a college as an IT Techncian (well Trainee was original title) for around 3 1/2 years. When I first started I had never worked in IT but had studied it at college and it is what I wanted to do. When I got the job I was told I would be trained up and put through microsoft courses etc to become qualified. As it turns out I was a quick learner and didn't have to go through any of the basic xp courses etc.
    Up to now I have been on the following courses;
    Network +
    The microsoft active directory course MS2279
    CCNA.
    I can do all fault finding repair of PC's, laptops, projectors, whiteboards, helpdesk duties etc. Quite good with active directory and GP. Can create msi's and deploy via GP. Some experience with vlans and cisco switches. Just started moving out software onto server 2008 remote app. Look after the library system and server.

    I was supposed to start getting trained on the network side of things but then they employed an assistant to the network manager which has pretty much rendered me as technician with little or no involvement in the network side which i want to become familiar with. Its the day to day running of the servers I want to gain experience in to hopefully be able to become a network manager.

    Is there anything I can do myself to gain this knowledge. I have a server at home which I can run VM's on and wondered what people could suggest I do to progress my career. It would be easy to sit here and take home the money but I want to learn and move forward.

    Sorry for the long post but I want to learn and keep moving forward, just turned 26 and worried that I am not moving ahead quick enough!
    Thanks

  2. #2

    AngryTechnician's Avatar
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    Have you talked to your line manager about your increasing desire to move forward? I was in a similar position to you a few years ago, and after requesting (and having) a formal sit-down about career development, the Powers That Be realised they needed to stretch me or I would go elsewhere, and so quickly did something about it.

    If you haven't had that conversation, that should be your first step. Remind them that they offered formal training when you started, and that it would be nice to have some, especially after you saved them a bunch of cash by not having to do the training they thought you needed then.

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    I did in my appraisal I said I wanted to progress and learn a lot more. We talked about me doing an MCSE and my line manager told me to look at the self study books as I said I'd like to try that and so I got a price for the set like he asked and mailed him it but he never bothered to order them. Also managed to get a course at a late availability rate of £500 rather than £1500 but the training dept were to slow to get the forms sorted and course ordered and it ended up filling up.

    I'm not the kind of person to moan or complain but feel a bit hard done by especially when the network managers assistant came in already having a degree and has been put onto really expensive vmware training as well as the ccna.

    So i'm going to have another word with my line manager and see what happens but I don't want to go round in circles like this year on year and be stuck here. I really want to learn and progress and have made it really clear how much I want to learn and take on more responsability but seems like they are quite happy to have me doing my job as it is. I'm not asking for anymore money just the oppertunity.

    Any ideas what to start trying to teach myself?

    Cheers for the advice already.

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    rh91uk's Avatar
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    I was in a similar posistion to yourself. I worked my backside off, and it took for someone to go off sick for me to show how good I was doing. What I would do is almost certainly set up a test server and xp workstation and mess around. That's what I did! Ask for more responsibility, give informed suggestions. Thats how I got where I was, Assistant Network Manager at 18 years old.

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    It's difficult, I've tried to ask for training for my staff as I understand they feel a little bit 'stuck'. The issue being with the school is offering the training would mean they'd have to lock the staff into another year at the school... they want ROI - not sure they want that!

    Is your NM/LM fighting your cause on this? Learning on your own is a great idea but, your school can offer leave for training dependant on what your policy is.

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    my LM is all for me having training when I sit down one to one and tell him I want to learn more but once we are out of the meeting it just gets forgotton about. A few people I work with say how he is not a very good manager. We have a director of IT who is above my LM and the NM but I don't know what my boss would say if I went over him directly to the top boss.

    I don't necessarily want to leave, its pretty good pay for a IT Tech round here, literally 5 mins away from home but I won't stay there just for those reasons.

    Got a test server setup today with VMware any ideas where to go with it?


    I was thinking of setting up a DC (maybe 2 to look at replication etc), connecting clients to it, how to set up GP from scratch. Maybe look at login scripts (never done these but wanted to learn). Redirected desktop/home folders.

    can I setup RIS/WDS within a vmware network? never tried using that and did ask to learn it.

    Is it possible to emulate terminal server and thin clients on vmware? I'm guessing you should be able to everything you can in a real network?

    Want to basically learn how to set up a network from scratch as I know why things are done at work but never been involved in how they are set up initially.

    Thanks for the advice given already, I appreciate it!

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    We have a director of IT who is above my LM and the NM but I don't know what my boss would say if I went over him directly to the top boss.
    Quick answer - email him after the next meeting with a quick summary of what you discussed, making sure the training is in there. After a short while of nothing happening, email asking about the training and when you can expect to go - maybe even find a course in a time you'd be free and suggest it. Make it as easy as possible for them to just have to say yes.

    If nothing happens then, maybe offer to go and chat to the director to see if there is any way you can clear things up with them. Simply, phrase it that you're helping them out, but making it clear that if they don't sort it out then you will. It's a fine line to tread, but bear in mind that it's your career that they're blocking!

    I've had that kind of manager for the last 4 years, and on Thurs I head off somewhere new where training is compulsory. :-)

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    I have to say that I would definitely think about moving - after 3.5 years you should move on anyway so that you can learn different things and widen your experience of the IT environment. You could look for a job where you would get to see more of the networking side - which wouldn't be too difficult. Then at least you would have experience of a wider range of technologies, even if you havent had the traiining yet.

    Setting up servers etc at home is a good idea too

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    ahuxham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by darkmanx View Post
    I was thinking of setting up a DC (maybe 2 to look at replication etc), connecting clients to it, how to set up GP from scratch. Maybe look at login scripts (never done these but wanted to learn). Redirected desktop/home folders.

    can I setup RIS/WDS within a vmware network? never tried using that and did ask to learn it.

    Is it possible to emulate terminal server and thin clients on vmware? I'm guessing you should be able to everything you can in a real network?

    Want to basically learn how to set up a network from scratch as I know why things are done at work but never been involved in how they are set up initially.

    Thanks for the advice given already, I appreciate it!
    I'd look at 2/3 DC's to be honest, a few points you should learn as they are MCSE topics are: (As I assume this would be the end goal, its a very invaluable certification to have and defiantly opens up possibilities in the future)

    Tree's, forests, and trusts between these. I setup 6 2003 Enterprise DC's 3 for onedomain.local and 3 for seconddomain.local

    I messed around with DFS linking and replicating between the trusts, setting up site links and quotas, setting up the forest between both domains, checking credentials and replication between, Global catalog replication between the domains and the likes.

    Knowing how to setup a GPO is a good start as well, you don't need to know everything bar the basic, logging, usernames and passwords (minimums/maximums)

    You can set everything up via GUI's and the likes but your going need need to learn the following commands as well; DSADD, DSMOD, DSQUERY, DSMOVE, DSRM. Would also be a good point learning about groups, types and inheritance.

    Shares and permissions are another good point to focus on.

    But to start you're defiantly on the right lines.

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    CAM
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    On a similar vein, what would people's thoughts be on the self-training of setting up Linux-based networks (ideally without interfering with the current one!). Is there much demand for that?

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