Embrace defensive learning: Become an expert on new technologies that threaten your job.

Some IT Pros are worried that “The Cloud” will take their job. Others are worried that automation will take their job away. While there is a bit of “worried about getting attacked by a shark when you are more likely to be in a car accident on the way to the beach” about these fears, it’s also fair to say that these fears aren’t entirely groundless.

Realize that you can’t do anything about the march of technological progress. It is wave after wave of disruptive change. You can’t fight the ocean waves, but you can surf them to a better place.

Embrace defensive learning. If there is a technology that you think will “take your job” – dive in and become an expert on that technology. If you are worried about automation, learn to automate. You’ll either be the person who is creating the automation, or be the person that has their job automated away. Nothing is going to stop those jobs being automated away, but the important realization is that the automation isn’t going to build itself.

If you’re worried about all your on-prem servers going to “The Cloud” – become an expert on migrating on-prem servers to the cloud. While people in slick clothes are great at selling the message that “everything in the cloud is awesome” to the decision makers at organizations, nothing gets to be awesome unless there are people turning the wheels that give that wheezy old on-prem server a new life as a VM in a cloud datacenter.

If you fear a technology, learn about that technology until you master that fear. You’ll be way ahead of those server administrators who have that “kangaroo in the headlights” reaction to new technology. Learning about it isn’t hard. There are endless screencasts, online seminars, TechEd sessions, and blog posts talking about it.

All you need is motivation to learn about this new technology that scares you, and that’s where “fear” can be your ally.

Discuss this Blog Entry 1

on Jun 10, 2014

Unfortunately what you saying does NOT make sense.
You are saying "If you’re worried about all your on-prem servers going to “The Cloud” – become an expert on migrating on-prem servers to the cloud". Ok then what? Now the service is in the "Public Cloud" and no need of the person who did the migration............

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Orin Thomas

Orin Thomas is a contributing editor for Windows IT Pro and a Windows Security MVP. He has authored or coauthored more than thirty books for Microsoft Press, founded the Melbourne System Center,...
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