Using the Force to create your dream job: Episode 54

use-the-forceAll the Geek Whisperers have changed jobs recently. We basically invented the new roles ourselves. How did we do that? This week we talk about using the force to create a new job and about our career journeys.


Amy recently was promoted from a manager of Influence Marketing in the Data Center group at Cisco to a remit that spans all of the corporation. We talk about:

  • Tip 1: testing the title you want by putting it up on LinkedIn
  • finding the people that actually do stuff in a corporation
  • people really do the things they want to do, not necessarily their job descriptions
  • putting your objectives in pencil, not pen
  • trying things, filling a business need
  • Tip 2: talk to your stakeholders; the people your role is affecting
  • i.e., in listening, you are able to articulate the value of what you are doing
  • Tip 3: you must be fluent in suit as well as t-shirt
  • Brian Gracely
  • Leaning the F in
  • Know the value you bring to the table
  • Find mentors, mentor others
  • Create a community
  • Tip 4: If you know there’s a business need for what you do, keep doing it
  • Look for the holes; fill the gaps

Matt recently shifted from a inside sales engineer role at Infinio to a role in technical marketing.

  • Matt has accepted that he is connected to the dark side of the Force — marketing
  • If you’re not up on your Star Wars trivia, the Chancellor is actually the bad guy in disguise
  • creating a new role for someone that can build a lab, try new cool things, and then talk about it
  • self-help for self-loathing marketers: it’s all about good intent
  • know who you’re talking to
  • being a member of the club
  • geek marketers must be willing to be the brunt of marketing jokes
  • saying what’s on your mind and what you want
  • checking off different roles around big and small companies on the way to becoming an executive
  • if your interests are not where your job role is, do you want to keep doing it?
  • putting people in the right roles is a good corporate retention strategy
  • translating your skills into what the company needs
  • not walking away from a relationship
  • trusting your gut
  • moving closer to the product team

John quit his job at VMware and started his own company and consulting practice

  • finishing all the things you set out to do
  • hunters vs farmers
  • perceived need in the marketplace
  • maintaining an income: healthcare & mortgage
  • Ramen Profitable from Paul Graham
  • talking to lots of potential clients in the industry you want to work in
  • being a part of a community; learning to love IT
  • have a vision for something that needs to be invented in the world
  • doing what you love
  • don’t discount the gate that is open in front of you


May the Farce Be With You!

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