Moving On

I don’t fear change. I actually feed off it. I am constantly making things to look forward to. The next trip. The next project. The next play date. It always varies in size and sometimes I do a whole lot of change at once.

Last summer, I started getting that feeling like I needed a change. Kevin got a new job, moving up in the company and I started to wonder “What’s next?” We are done with babies, IUDs aren’t shooting out of my uterus and things were going pretty swell. So we moved and that understandably distracted me from about Sept-Feb. But it came back.

At work, I wondered what was my “5 year plan”. Where did I see myself going? I realized development was rewarding but also sometimes extremely overwhelming. It is a hard feeling to describe. On one hand I could get that high from figuring something out. I love that feeling but at the same time, just using a really neat web app would paralyze me. A new Netflix interface. A children’s app. I could see what it took to make it and I would get this rush of “fuck, I could never do that”. I am not an “I can’t” person.And for all intensive purposes, I COULD do those things but I started to realize I didn’t want that. I didn’t want to be a senior developer in 5 years. There were people far better than me out there at THAT. I have a shit ton of awesome skills…so I wasn’t completely lost but I knew I needed to figure this out. I asked to work more with our social media and marketing of the product. I enjoyed that…a lot. I liked coming up with catchy images and tweets to get people interested in our stuff. I liked showcasing tips and tricks. I liked having a voice with a side of nerd speak. Then I was approached about doing it on a bigger scale.

So I’m making a jump. A BIG jump. Starting August 1, I leave my “first” job as a nerd to go to marketing. I will be on the SAS Social Media team to promote all of SAS. Go big or go home I guess. Not only is it a jump in complete job role but this is also a pioneering group for SAS. I am ecstatic. I am trading in my IDE for Word Press and Facebook Ads. But at the same time, I know my technical knowledge is going to be extremely important. Understanding technical specs of tools. Tearing apart dashboards and researching/creating plugins. I’ve already dropped some “oh that’s easy…we can do that real quick”s that have people going “wait what?” I will be dressing fancier (watch out #officefashionshow) and talking to important people more than compiling class files and editing SQL queries. 

But leaving my work family is really hard. For the last 10 years, I have worked for one product. I’ve held 3 different positions and worn so many hats, I could attend Kentucky derbies for the rest of my life. I have to say I am one lucky lady.  I came here to join this group and this group alone. I didn’t just want to work for SAS…I wanted to work for SAS inSchool. And I got it. I got to leave college with my dream job and keep doing it. That’s rare and amazing and I will never forget that. They have been my family. They mentored me. They showed me an even bigger love for education. They made me get out of my comfort zone. They let me curse like a sailor. They challenged me. They showed me hilarious viral videos and responded to me with GIFs <3. They let me vent. They taught me to be me and not apologize for it. They pushed me to write. They saw me get married. They saw me get the size of a whale(2 times!) and bring home babies. They dealt with my horrible spelling and bad vocabulary. They encouraged me to do what I wanted to do…and trusted me to make this product better. And I spent 10 years trying to make it the best I could.

But it’s time for change. The good thing is I am just a few buildings away. There is still IM. There is still the gym. There are still lunch dates. I hope I can make them proud on a bigger stage and learn a totally new skill set.

Oh and teach a whole new set of people how to talk nerdy :).

Cheers, life!

16 Comments

  1. Congrats! A friend of mine posted a marketing specialist job at SAS the other day, and I am totally on the fence about leaving IT. I know I need a change, but that’s a hard leap.

  2. Congrats! I am so excited for you! And I understand completely. That was me a few years ago – web dev just didn’t have the same allure and I knew I wasn’t cut out for nor had any interest in being a hard-core web developer or programmer. That was a big reason why I went to grad school and purposefully didn’t choose the IT side of my school’s degree programs. I moved into marketing, helped pioneer our social media presences and then discovered my love for market research and data analysis. That’s where I am now and love it! And you’re right – your technical skills will come in handy as you can help the less technical understand what is feasible (and/or give reality checks!). Good for you and yay! Much luck in your new position.

  3. Congrats! I’m in a similar boat at work, feeling ready for a new challenge after 10 years of a job I’ve loved. I can’t really explain why, other than maybe I’m recovering from baby hangover and starting to feel ambitious again. I’m hoping I find that kind of excitement for the next challenge as you have!!

  4. You're pretty incredible. I'm proud to have such a BAMF as my BFF. (Also it's fun to do 'what to wear' threads in the mornings;)

  5. What fantastic news!! Sounds like an opportunity. As if I wasn’t in awe of your already cool SAS job – now further in awe you get to be part of their new social media team. You will rock this!!

  6. This makes me happy on many, many levels. We are so lucky to have you join us in this new initiative that is so very important to the business. Social is getting the attention it deserves and I know our team is going to greatly benefit from having your passion, creativity and technical expertise to drive us all to do big things. The future is bright, my friend. So glad you’re joining us for the ride.

  7. Cheers and congrats! When I saw your title I was immediately thinking, no, she can’t be leaving SAS, that company is awesome by reputation and she loves it there as far as an outsider like me can tell.

    Now I know why – but you can do it. I worked at my first company for 9 years and left for a new career – entirely! – so you can make this change, you already are, and kick some mega-a$$! I’m excited for you. You seem crazy happy already!

  8. In our few exchanges you have definitely left me saying “wait what?” I am SO looking forward to learning and working with you. Congratulations and welcome! P.S. I have such similar feelings about leaving my wonderful old team as well, so I can completely relate there, friend.

  9. Congratulations! Very excited for your next endeavor. I hear ya, I’ve been in the same “position” for ten years and need a change. I’m just not sure what that change is yet. Good luck and make them say more “wait, what?”

  10. Best of luck to you — marketing scares the bejeezus out of me . . . I’m finding that “development” is less & less of what I do, as I’m stepping into “project management,” which is, as I do it, at least “tell the people who are way more talented what the users the app to do.”

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