What’s Holding You Back From Interesting Projects At Work?

What's Keeping You Back From All The Fun Work?
What's Keeping You Back From All The Fun Work?

Is your boss keeping your career back?

Do you realize that the same boss who is responsible for keeping back your career will ultimately fire you for another IT worker with a better resume!

If you are frustrated in your current job because of lack of stimulating, interesting or challenging work or because someone else like your boss … is keeping your career back then you need to read this article.

One of the traits of successful IT professionals is the desire to learn, improve or working on exciting and challenging ideas all the time. It is what truly distinguishes achieving IT professions from others.

As an IT professional, your passion, mind, skill sets, list of projects is what truly sets you apart.

If your portfolio demonstrates passion, excellence and sharp skill sets, then you will have a successful career. You will be one of those lucky, in-demand or sought after IT professionals.

If your portfolio does not demonstrate sharp skills or passion then you have lost your career.

Is Your Boss Keeping Your Career Back?

Do you know that your boss constantly receives and reviews resumes from other IT workers who are doing jobs comparable to yours?

The irony is that even when your boss is responsible for keeping back your career by constantly assigning you to projects below your skillsets, the same boss will ultimately fire you for an IT worker with a better resume.

But … that is not fair you say. Yes, I agree that is not fair, but that’s how the entire IT profession plays out.

I have seen it happen to good IT workers time and time again.

The takeaway is that you and not your boss is responsible for your career.

Perhaps you were hired with promises of new projects or promises that you will be working on the latest technologies but you were sent to do maintenance work or work below your skill sets for a prolonged period of time.

Ultimately, you will be fired. And when you are fired, you will be in a bad situation because your skill sets will be lower than what they should be.

Moreover, other IT Managers reviewing your resume will wonder why you were working on un-challenging projects for so long and conclude that perhaps there is something wrong with your skill sets!

Here is a comment posted by a business analyst that fully desribes this problem:


I am currently in a very frustrating situation, i really need advise in this regard.

I am currently employed as a business analyst, but the tasks that I perform are not Business Analysis related instead they more technical, first line support.

I am really frustrated about the matter because now it seems as if I am not developing in terms of my Business analysis.

Should I move, or not?

Because the environment it self does not accomodate business analysis.

Please advice ……….

Thank you

My response to this business analyst is that he needs to start looking into getting another business analyst job after following these guidelines:

 1. Ask your Boss to give you to a more challenging business analyst project:

To be fair to your boss, you should gently, discreetly and wisely raise the issue.

You need to give your boss a fair chance to remedy the situation by asking for more challenging work.

You could initiate a conversation like “I really appreciate all the work you have been giving me and I am wondering if you could give me more work along the lines of … “.

You need to do some research and come up with a list of projects within your firm that you think you would be better suited for.

You also need to figure out your boss’s personality and the best way of communicating your intentions in a non-threatening manner.

  • Email & Talk: You may need to email your boss first and ask for an appointment to discuss the situation

  • Phone & Talk: You may need to call your boss on the phone and ask for a good time to have a private career based talk

  • Talk at Lunch: Perhaps your boss is more relaxed at lunch time. If that is the situation, you need to strike up the conversation with your boss at lunch time

The point is that you need to discuss the situation with your boss in a way that shows that you are grateful for the work you’ve been given and would at the same time appreciate more challenging work.

 2. Start Preparing for a new Business Analyst Job:

You should also prepare yourself for the possibility that your boss may do little to improve your work situation.

Your boss may be unable to assign more challenging work because there is none available or because an internal decision has been made that you are not to be given the latest or challenging projects or because the boss simply doesn’t care about your situation.

Whatever the situation, your career is still your responsibility and you need to take charge of it.

Here are the steps you need to take towards getting a new business analyst job:

  • Get Your Resume In Order: Get your resume into tip-top shape by adding all the business analyst work you’ve done and making sure it is up to date.

    You need to take this action before you leave your current business analyst job

  • Get More Business Analysis Skills: Since you current business analysis work may have done little to improve your resume, you need to consider taking action along the lines of improving your business analysis resume outside work channels.

    It is important that you give yourself a 3 to 6 months window during which you work hard on improving your business analysis skills

  • Start Looking for Business Work: Somewhere in the 6 months window where you are working on improving your business analysis resume, you need to start looking for a new business analysis job.

    Since getting a new business analysis job may take some time, you need to factor in an additional 1 to 3 months for your job search

 3. Do Not Leave Your Business Analyst Job Prematurely:

The final guideline is that you should not resign or leave your current business analysis job until you have a firm letter of employment in your hands.

The reason is that employers are several times more likely to give you an offer of employment or hire you when you are currently in the employment of another firm than when you apply for a position without a job.

This post was inspired by a challenge facing a business analyst. If you have a burning question … a challenge facing your career, post it as a comment and I will answer it for you.

4 Responses to "What’s Holding You Back From Interesting Projects At Work?"

  1. Shashika   June 12, 2010 at 2:20 pm

    The Challenge Facing Me Is No Job Satisfaction!

    • IT Career Coach   June 12, 2010 at 6:05 pm

      #careers #jobs Do What You Love and you will have job satisfaction. So careers are wrecked because they were chosen for the wrong reasons:

      1. Popularity / Status

      2. Money / Compensation

      3. Friends ./ Family Advice

      4. Trend Watching aka what will be popular versus what will not

      5. Fear / Rumours – e.g. all the p0rogramming jobs in the USA have been shipped to …

      I advice people to pick jobs or choose careers based on:

      1. What they like doing

      2. Their strengths and weaknesses

      3. A full 360 degree survey of the environment that factors in both Threats and Opportunities

  2. Rami   September 19, 2009 at 2:34 pm

    Hi there.

    What would you do if you discovered your boss is cheating his partner?

    Which means he can’t be trusted any more to stay in his company though you know he badly needs you (at least for the moment!) as he says so?

    living a morale dilemma!

    • IT Career Coach   June 12, 2010 at 6:07 pm

      What would you do if you discovered your boss is cheating his partner? … Answer:

      I would find another job and then put in the standard two week notice.

      At the exit interview when asked why I am leaving, I would say that I am looking for more challenges … and mention nothing about the cheating that is going on!

      What will you do?


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