Career Development · Product management

How to advance in my career?

Siddharth Saha

January 14th, 2016

I have been working as a software developer for almost my entire career (5 years)? I started as a software developer and advanced to become a VP Engineering and lead the development team of 10 people in a startup. Post that, I tried starting up my own venture and experimented with two ideas in one year. Both of them failed. 

Now, I am back to working in a mid-sized company and heading product development of a team of 10 developers. However, I feel stuck in my current role and do not know what to do next. I feel stuck because I don't think I am learning as much as I want to. Coding and project management do not excite me anymore.  

What do you think I should do next?

Rob G

January 14th, 2016

sidharth, if 'coding and project management do not excite you anymore' then what does?  what interests you? what gets you out of bed early and staying up late? 

Siddharth Saha

January 14th, 2016

Rob -- Frankly speaking, I'm not sure if I know what excites me at this point. One part of me wants to do something on my own again, that is, build something new again. The other part tells me to cool off and actually find something which I will be interested in the long term.

So, at this point, basically I am looking to find what excites me. Where do you suggest I start looking given my background. I don't want to get into something where I can't utilise what I have already learnt.

Sanjib Kalita Knowledge Director at Money2020

January 15th, 2016

From the 20k ft view seems like you've had great career progression to date and a nice mixture of organizations. Don't go after the next career move from a point of negativity (i.e. I don't like this, I don't like that). You mentioned that you've reached a learning plateau. What types of learning do you want to do next? Do want to learn more about how customers are using/deciding upon their software? This would suggest a move towards sales and marketing type of work. Are you interested in how software technologies you've used can solve problems in other markets? This would suggest trying to find a role in another industry or geography? There are many other potential questions. You don't mention anything you've liked in your experiences. Just that you've done them. Just because you can do something, doesn't mean you should do something. As hokey as it might sound, I've found that listing things I've liked and disliked and actually physically writing/typing the list has helped me in the past. In any case, sounds like you're talented and ambitious. I'd also suggest networking and connecting with other similar people as they can give you ideas.