Firstly, I want to mention that I'm information technology enthusiast. And I have multiple working/learning experiences in different fields of information technology. But, now I see that I should focus my knowledge and work/study on one of the fields because technology is expanding very fast and I cannot stay updated to everything. I need to make something as my best skill and stick with that.

I started my career as Graphic/Web Designer for 2 years. After that I worked as IT Technician, and after a while started as IT Administrator for 3 years, in the meantime I was certified with CCNA (Cisco Certified Network Associate) and worked as Cisco Networking Academy Instructor for a short time.

During this period I was studying a bachelor degree in "Computer Science and Engineering" and I changed my focus over other things. I started liking programming, network security and digital circuits more.

So I changed my work and started working as a "Web & Software developer" in 2 different companies for 2-3 years until now that I am a team leader. While working I advanced my skills in Computer Security and Pentesting and willing to be certified as Ethical Hacker (CEH) in very short time.

I was also dealing with start-ups. I made an innovative project which had a lot of success. The project was dealing with software virtualization of school labs and received 3 global awards.

And for my free time I like to play/try new stuff like Game modification/modeling and Arduino.

My overall skills are:

  • Graphics Design / Creative thinking
  • IT & Network Administration
  • Web & Software engineering
  • Security and Pentesting
  • Arduino programming
  • Team and Project management

As you can see for each of my skills I don't have more than 2-3 years experience. As I said at the beginning I want to fit my self somewhere in one of the areas.

Now, my question is: What would you think is better to learn and work considering market needs and my experiences ?


  • Took out the "professionalism" tag - unless the contents of the post clearly includes "professionalism" as an item to be considered, the use of this tag is an abuse. – Vietnhi Phuvan Sep 1 '14 at 20:14
  • @VietnhiPhuvan abuse is a really strong word dude. Maybe "mistake" would be more appropriate. – bharal Sep 2 '14 at 13:03
  • @bharal I initiated a while ago discussion on meta about the abuse of this word. There are just too many who use this word indiscriminately. – Vietnhi Phuvan Sep 2 '14 at 13:37
  • which word - abuse or professionalism? i don't think the use of "abuse" sends the right opinion out about what this site is about, makes it seem like the OP didn't make a mistake, but actually stuck a searing flame in to the heart and soul of this site. Which, as it happens, is not the case. – bharal Sep 2 '14 at 15:07

The evident answer

Your kind of profile fits really well in Startups, but I'm sure it may burn you really fast to be "the-guy".

The answer you asked

I think that The Internet of things is the thing now, so knowing a little of everything will definitely be a plus.

Anyway, web and software designers, network and security admins and team managers are always needed.

The answer you want

The point that, in my opinion, is the true thrill, is that you also design. Have you thought about being a full stack developer, working as a freelance? You have done team managing, so managing yourself may be easier than what other people can achieve. You develop AND design, (something that the big majority of audience isn't truly able to distinguish), so you may be able to achieve a full project on your own. You know about security and network administration. Damn, that's a pretty high amount of knowledges.

If you are passionate about it, and you know how to sell yourself, being a freelance may give you a lot of work (and a lot of headaches). To put you an example. A friend of mine has more or less your same profile. He was working as a web dev in a company, and after moving to freelance, we felt better with him, as clients trusted his design and integration decisions, almost blindly. You'll be really challenged a lot of times, and you'll need to learn a bit about billing and money/time management in general, (and at least in Spain, do a lot of previous bureaucratic paperwork).

Also, you told you have been instructor. If you liked, maybe teaching can be a good way to be even more broaded, in terms of knowledge. If you didn't like it, external consultancies can give you quite a good amount of money for analising the strengths and weaknesses of other systems/teams.

My sincere answer

Never stop learning, especially new languages or frameworks (have a look at Nodejs, and I heard Scala was kicking lately), keep designing your own projects, make Android or iOS apps, learn about how projects can be interesting or monetizable, do a project you'd like to use, do a project other people would like to use. Do a framework or a library, just to learn and use it in your projects. Read books. I mean, A LOT of books, and not only technical. Sometimes the thing you need, can even be in a comic book.

This way, and only this way, you'll know what you enjoy doing, and not what's needed at this time (every kind of IT is needed any time. You only need to look for the position). If you learn and work as what you need and like, you'll never have to work again.


This is going to get closed as "off topic", but i think there should really be a generic answer to "what do i do when i like IT" style questions, and it should be along the lines of read these books.

For "i want to leave IT or make something of my career" i'd suggest apply for an mba by reading some "how to apply for an mba" books and writing the essays ~ the very act of thinking about it will get you moving in the right direction.

Anyway, to what you wrote - get your hands on the book "The Passionate Programmer", by Chad Fowler.

Talk to recruiters, as in arrange to meet with them to talk. They can often have ideas about where the market is heading, and while they may not put you up for jobs, you're really talking to them to find out what is going on in the market.

You might also want to join some tech meetups, if there are any wherever you live. That can be quite helpful.

Also, consider doing some mentoring tasks to help kids from disadvantaged backgrounds - this isn't really related, but it will help give you "leadership & mentoring" skills, which are always useful. And it is nice to help people too.

Finally, given you are asking about "market needs" and not "what i enjoy doing", then you will want to try and work for a bank. This is an assumption i make - when people ask about market needs i assume "show me the money".

Banks need people who know software engineering, and security also helps. Doing some courses or learning on how trade systems work will help with this.

However, i really think you should be asking "how do i find out what will make me happiest, and please don't tell me money equates to happiness", which is a different question altogether, and will require more introspection on your part.

  • Thanks for your answer and ideas, I really appreciate it. – Jax Sep 1 '14 at 15:10

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