Fork In The Path

Is this just another trivial decision I’ll make in the path of life? Or will this one actually play a large role in where I go from here? It’s the latter that really troubles me and I think the choice that faces me falls into this category.

This co-op program is great in that it allows you to experience all sorts of different careers before you really have to choose one once you graduate. However, with that opportunity comes difficult choices. The one I’m stuck with right now is what job to accept. It’s down to two jobs, both at big companies, so at least one of my original criterion will be satisfied by either job. That’s basically where the similarities end. The first one, probably the safer one, is to go to GlaxoSmithKline and work in the IT department. The other is to go to Bell Mobility and work in the Strategy and Planning department. One of tech-oriented, the other, more business-oriented. I’ve been spewing for a while that I really want to get into the business side of technology and this is probably one of the best chances I’ve come across so far. It’s not everyday I get asked to help plan a product and services roadmap for a major technology company.

But the problem with that is this. I probably won’t get much in the way of technical expertise over the work term. After all, it is aimed more at business students. This is actually the first time this position has recruited someone from the University of Waterloo. Previously, they’ve gotten students from the university just down the road, Wilfred Laurier.

And so that is/was the dilemma. I could take the safe route and do my IT job. Or I could take the business job and run the risk of falling a semester behind others in terms of technical experience. But I’ll be gathering a boatload of business experience, experience I’d probably never be able to learn in a classroom.

In the end, I’m pretty sure I’m going to go with Bell Mobility. Although it’s risky, I think it’s an opportunity I can’t let get away. I’ve been saying I want to get into the business side of engineering and an opportunity is smacking me in the face. I think I’d better take it. I mean my supervisor started off with a Computer Engineering degree and then moved on to an MBA later. That sounds mighty appealing to me. I may even learn a thing or two about that from him.

So without further ado, I present you with the place I’ll be working come September (late August actually): Strategy and Planning Analyst – Bell Mobility.

Bell Mobility
Bell Mobility

6 thoughts on “Fork In The Path”

  1. I think you should take it. First, it’s the first time it’s been offered to Waterloo so you can be the inaugeral employee. Also, it’s only 1 work term, you still have a couple left to complete. Besides, if you don’t take it you’ll always be wondering what the business aspect of it was like; but if you take it, you’ll know. Then you’ll be able to decide which one you prefer more and tailor the rest of your work terms to your decision.

  2. Hmm, interesting choice. My experience of working at a software company for the last 5 years is that many people with Computer Science/Engineering degrees end up on the business side (Business Analysis, Professional Services, Project Mgmt, even Sales/Marketing) because they find IT/software development on its own to be too dry. At least working as a business analyst you get to talk to real people and solve their problems! And it is a better route into general management if that is what you’re interested in. All the best for whatever decision you make.
    Richard

  3. congrats…the first step is the hardest but I know from our many conversations about our respective plans that you will not regret it. I know how hard it is to leave the comfort zone but it has to be done. Don’t forget to have fun too my friend!

    All my love,

    Nick

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