HeyZeus.org : Personal Blog of Zeus

Gaining experience putting it into words

There’s no real easy way to gain experience, and I always hated the notion that companies wanted someone ‘experienced’, but I now understand what experience really is.  Since making a lateral move to another program, there was a short interview process in which we talked about my ‘experience’ and what this new task entailed.  Everything ‘clicked’ during the interview, those engineering and program terms I wasn’t very familiar with long ago, were common words, phrases, and acronyms that I’ve had lots of exposure to.  It felt really good to hear those words that I was extremely familiar with.

My career has lead me to an interesting place, and I can finally define what I want out of my accomplishments working for a company.  It’s easy..and it’s my new ‘resume objective‘:  “To apply my systems and software knowledge and experience, to work on a product that is powerful, reliable, robust, and intuitive, while helping people and profiting for a company.” You like?   Having worked with defense companies for 7 years now with 3 different companies, I’m starting to understand what these companies are looking for, and I believe my resume sums it up well.

I really enjoy putting experiences into words and now this post and my resume describe that.  I always had a software engineering title and knew that was wrong, but was afraid to put systems engineer on my resume.  Now, I know it’s right and everything I’ve been doing falls under systems engineering, but more specifically integration and test.  I’ve really enjoyed the work I do, because it’s so dynamic.  The biggest benefit is training people, and customer support related tasks.  It’s such a multi-functional role, and being relied on for so many different things feels good.

Keeping my resume up to date lately has been great, aside from being easy.  However it’s been more important to finally keep my resume and experiences written down and up to date.

In all, I still hate when a company wants someone ‘experienced’ and I understand why, but I would hope they give those with powerful degrees and a great attitude an opportunity, because in the end you always have to get spun up, adjust to the environment, do in-formal training and learn the system.  It just takes people with experience less time and people without a little more.  Also going from job to job is less frightening.  Hang in there, buy your time, but don’t limit yourself to just one thing or one job, anything you do can be considered experience…