Sunday, June 7, 2015

More Credentials

As if the Ph.D. weren't enough... well, it isn't enough.  I'm now leafing through catalogs of different programs in the business world.  The one that seems to have the most merit, at least, in terms of increasing earning power according to Harvard, is the MBA.

It's weird to think of going back to school.  Part of me says, "Seriously?  Are you seriously considering this after 11 years of post-graduate study (not to mention the post-doc)?"  Not to mention it would be part-time and completely consume any resources I have outside of actual work.  And the other part sees it as a necessary evil to gain credibility in a world I was not primarily trained for.  The funny thing is, it's not like I don't have the skills or couldn't learn them in the job I currently have.  It's just that, if this job isn't forever (what job is?), I'll need to be job-searching sometime in the future, and experience without a credential is somewhat flimsy.  Or at least I think it is flimsy because I've never tried to look for another job after this one.  Sigh.  Me and my ridiculous search for the best credential.  I wonder if it is all in my mind.  The jobs I want to take all have people in them with J.D. (no thanks, I'm not going back for 6-8 years for part-time Law!) or MBA or a business degree with Accounting, or at the very least (still a long slog) a project management accreditation.

I guess the struggle now is - do I build solely experience and worry about the next job when I need it?  Or think closely about improving how I look on paper in addition to real experience?  I know when I got in two years ago after academia, it was all about the experience.  But now, I actually need to compete with people that went to school for this.  Seems like MBAs are all over the place.

At any rate, this is so much more of a first-world problem, which differs vastly from where I was two years ago trying to make ends meet and get out of the postdoc!  I suppose that is a victory in and of itself.


Wednesday, February 18, 2015

How are you faring?

It's been a long time...

A really long time...

I'm still pressing on in the job that I first got when I left.  It's good and bad.  It's nice that it isn't a really big company so it's not like you have to steer a supertanker to effect change.  It's not so nice that it's a small company that is lacking a lot of procedure.

I'm all about efficiency lately.  It's crazy to come full circle from academia, where efficiency is rarely talked about (other than profs that are pushing out the Least Publishable Unit) to industry where operations are currently being tweaked to increase efficiency.  Each hour you put in during the day should be motivated by, "How did you make money for the company today?"  Sometimes, it's too short-sighted, as I talked about on the last post, but it really puts into check how you spend your time.  I really like that part.

I've moved up the ranks into a managerial position. People problems consume a large part of my time.  Why can't that person work with the guy in the corner?  What's the backstory?  How much do we play politics to keep people engaged and motivated and how much do we just say, "You know what?  We're paying you so get your fricken job done."  It's pretty weird to consider where I was two years ago...

And the degree itself?  Well, I guess I have come to terms with it a bit more.  It's nice to say that I have a Ph.D. In some respects, there is a bit of credibility there too.  Does it help me in my current position?  No, other than it built reasoning capacity, which is important, but probably could have been picked up along the way.  So I guess I would say the intangible things I developed during my Ph.D were good things.  Would I do it again?  Never.