Monday, August 18, 2014

Contracting aka Betting on Myself

Today I starting working as a software engineer contractor.  It is a big change for me.  My entire career has been spent at two companies.  The first job at Kemper Insurance was where I saw myself working the duration of my time in the workforce like my father who is still working there.  However I moved to Boston with my now wife and Kemper was kind enough to lay me off and outsource my position on the same day I was interviewing at the company in Boston I would later work for.  Working for Safari Books Online, now going by just Safari, was an amazing company to work for.  They showed just what I should expect from an employer in terms of company culture.  In order to make sure my kids were in a good school district we had to move far enough away from the city that made my commute untenable so it was time to move on.  That leads me to here; contracting at ADP spending less than half the time I was commuting into the south Boston.  My goals as a contractor are to round off my resume, acquire a few new skills, and set myself up to land a great job.

A couple things I want to keep in mind while working as a contractor:

  • Be flexible.  It is not my code in any way shape or form.  Go with the flow.
  • Be positive.  There are team members who have been struggling with the project before you joined this team and they will be struggling after you leave. Just be a positive element on the team to help keep things moving.
  • Find a way to contribute in a meaningful way that your coworkers can remember you for.

This blog was started after I read another blog titled "Why software engineers should maintain a blog" by Chase Seibert so I am going to try to keep this blog active.  I have started a half dozen blogs over the years but hopefully I can stick with this one.


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