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Question
Posted by: Zee01 | 2011/07/13

Need career advice

I am going through a very difficult time at the moment...
I am in a dead end career, and feel so hopeless...
I am a COBOL programmer, and that is ALL I do! The company I work for - there is NO future, yes, I can still be here in 10 years, but I will be in the exact same position I am in now, doing exactly the same thing! And i HATE what I am doing!!!

All the job oppurtunities that are available look for people with experience in other stuff that I will not get here....
Basically, they screw you and make sure you cannot go anywhere!

This is really starting to effect my marriage as I am in such a deppro.....

Hubby and I talked about me studying something, but I have NO idea what....

Any suggestions?
And how do I make the best of this crappy situation??????

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Sounds like this is either an accidental misfortune, or, as you imply, a situation in which the company has been strategically happy to dead-end you, to keep you around conveniently. Maybwe you should consult a labour lawyer, as there may be some obligations for a company to provide opportunities for career development and broader training. Are there truly no other job oportunities in COBOL ? Are there not other companies with legacy programmes needing these skills, but perhaps more alert to helping their employees to develop further ?
SOme psychologists ( not all ) provide vocational advice, and can do a range of tests which assess your interests and your abilities, and suggest work field which fit both

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

15
Our users say:
Posted by: Lorna Brophy | 2011/08/23

@M Glover.

I am in a senior position with a global company and am involved in recruiting people. My advise to you is to have your CV profesionally drawn up. If you cannot afford to do this - you can search the internet for sample CV''s to copy and adapt to your experience and career. Reading your comments I see you have trouble articulating and forming sentences and your spelling is not very good. ( maybe English isn''t your first language) I suggest that before you apply for a job in writing you ask a person who is able to assist you in putting a letter together.

I receive many CV''s and one of the criteria for discarding CV''s is if the person''s CV is sloppy, has bad spelling and high school certificates ( especially if the person is over 25) Sloppy CV''s reflect that a person will be sloppy in their work, with little attention to detail.

Good luck with your job search and I hope my advice helps you.

Reply to Lorna Brophy
Posted by: Joseph Mulenga Chomba | 2011/08/22

Some times the cause is fatique. A long hiliday can do you a lot of good. Plan it in such a way that you can go away to some place where you can be in touch with nature like a game park or a farm where you can do manual work like gardening. Ensure nobody from your work place may reach you for at least three consecutive weeks.

Regards

Joseph

Reply to Joseph Mulenga Chomba
Posted by: m glover | 2011/08/22

White over 50 years in the same position got a lot of experience in creditors and credit controlling - i have touch my son to be
credit manager after i was supervisor for abut 5years
and know he is manager i am still not a manager. how came
i done sow many dlipomas and have bank experiense as well
do you think my c/v is wrong? please help me - thanks

Reply to m glover
Posted by: khutjo | 2011/08/19

You have to do something to take you out there on the same level. there is nothing difficult on this world to reach is up to you,follow your heart what you want to do. mix with people behind you and ask help and dont give up.

Reply to khutjo
Posted by: Pisces | 2011/08/18

White, over 45 and unemployed? Very difficult to accept that just about every door of employment you approach, you seem to be turned down on those attributes. Never mind the years of great experience and dedication in Sales, Marketing, Telephone Skills, People Handling and Problem Solving. I have been home doing day care etc for 4 years - what to do to get back into the commercial field?

Reply to Pisces
Posted by: Kibbies | 2011/08/17

I do not feel valued or appreciated at the company I work.
I applied for a position that I have experience in and am doing when my collegues go on leave but was unsuccessful. According to my manager he put my name forward for the position but was turned down by his manager (who was my previous manager). Instead the job went to someone fresh out of college with no hands on experience.
What can I do to get out of this situation?

Reply to Kibbies
Posted by: Tefi | 2011/08/16

I''m a disaster management officer and i am trying to love what i''m doing but without some support from the supervisor and the manager it''s difficult for me, but i would like to study for Social Worker and i don''t know where to go. Can you please advise me where to go?

Reply to Tefi
Posted by: NGS | 2011/08/15

I love what i do, i am a client serve consultant, working for African Bank, which is a great company to work for but management can reallr F u up in so many ways, moral is low all the time, you work for your salary that you signed for but you dnt even get to enjoy it anymore. I have been with the company for 5 yrs now n moving in between 2 depts, but by looking at things now, growth-wise I am not going anywhere, spmebody pls help.

Reply to NGS
Posted by: susan smith | 2011/08/08

After reading through all the comments, I must agree that you need a change of some sort, but a drastic change may not be feasible?

As a Psychometrist, I see many people in the same situation as you, so please don''t feel like you are the only one. A career guidance session as explained above is valuable, as it assessess your personality, interest and aptitude on a subconscious level and can be valuable to you. I always recommend a reassessment if people are going through a crisis such as this.

It may be that a complete change may be necessary, may be that you need to change your skills, or build on what you have to make your job more interesting.

A question to ask yourself is what your colleagues and superiors are like, what is going on in your personal life? and whether these have any underlying baring on your unhappiness in the job? Often people don''t leave companies - they leave bosses.

Just a thought
Susan Smith

Reply to susan smith
Posted by: Angie Apruzzese | 2011/08/05

PA - 26 years + feel like I have stagnated, need growth or new career.

Reply to Angie Apruzzese
Posted by: Juliet | 2011/08/03

I am a 50 year old woman. I was a teacher for 16 years, but now I am a manager in skills development (HRD). I have a masters behind my name. Recently I have been feeling that with my knowledge I need to conrtibute meaninfully to disavantaged young girls and women but I do not know exactly where I should start. Any suggestions? I want to start right away~!!!!

Regards

Reply to Juliet
Posted by: Carinna Krantz | 2011/08/02

Dear Reader, experiencing a mid-career crises is quite common, but the way we identify the real cause and effect could be the ''make &  break'' of one''s forward career path. I wish to advise that the most ideal consideration would be to undergo a proper career counselling and psychometric assessment profiling by an HPCSA (Health Professions Council of SA) professional Registered Practitioner. Such a comprehensive Assessment Battery includes objective and quantitative integrated data of the candidate, which reflects valid and reliable indicators and recommendations on possible alternative career adjustments.

We all know the cost implications of further studies e.g. the actual costs of the courses and concurrent lack of income during such period. If in parallel whilst working we have to be committed to the sacrifices regarding personal time, energy and no compromises, in order to reach our academic goal. It''s simply too costly to make a wrong career decision and set ourselves up for ''failure''. A comprehensive Career Counselling and Psychometric Assessment Battery should cover all relevant dimensions of the candidate e.g. Personality Type, Personality Traits, Interests, Intellectual Learning Potential, Cognitive Reasoning Abilities, Values and Motives, and Simulated Technical Aptitude.

It is important to note that such a directive Assessment Battery and Candidate Feedback procedure is covered by one''s Medical Aid and should be preceded by a formal Quotation by die HPCSA Registered Practitioner.

It appears that the general perception is that Career Counselling ''belongs'' only with school-going learners, but that''s not true. The Science of Human Behaviour belongs with the formal discipline of Psychology, consisting of registered Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Psychometrists and Counsellors.

The reader is welcome to contact PsySSA (Psychological Society of South Africa) for further information on professional career advise.

Reply to Carinna Krantz
Posted by: Vaal Donkie | 2011/07/28

Ouch. A good career move would be to learn something like Forms applications with C# or VB.NET. you should be able to apply a lot of what you learned during your years as a COBOL programmer. You might even want to consider studying to become a SQL DBA. My cousin''s wife used to be an AS/400 programmer and she did basically the same thing. She wound up in IT recruiting in the end, but she was a Delphi, and later SQL, developer after her stint as mainframe programmer.

Try studying towards the MCPD certification.

Reply to Vaal Donkie
Posted by: unique | 2011/07/18

Honestly you need to get out of COBOL. I refused to go there around 1998 - it was dying then... each yourself another language (using books etc) and offer to re-write some of the cobol systes in a more modern language.

Reply to unique
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011/07/13

Sounds like this is either an accidental misfortune, or, as you imply, a situation in which the company has been strategically happy to dead-end you, to keep you around conveniently. Maybwe you should consult a labour lawyer, as there may be some obligations for a company to provide opportunities for career development and broader training. Are there truly no other job oportunities in COBOL ? Are there not other companies with legacy programmes needing these skills, but perhaps more alert to helping their employees to develop further ?
SOme psychologists ( not all ) provide vocational advice, and can do a range of tests which assess your interests and your abilities, and suggest work field which fit both

Reply to cybershrink

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