Ask Tom – Getting into IT – May 14, 2017

Tom,
I am interested in changing careers and want to get into the IT world. I have a Bachelor’s degree in another area and am wondering if a Bachelor’s degree in IT/IS is needed. What are your thoughts?

Sincerely,
Job Changer

Dear Job Changer,
Absolutely not! In fact, many of the best IT professionals you’ll ever meet have no degree at all. The three keys to success in IT are:

  • Self-Management Abilities
  • Relational Abilities
  • Technical Abilities

Interestingly, these are the same keys to success in any career, IT is simply no different. However, each career has a different balance among these abilities. For example, early in an IT career, it is weighted heavily toward technical abilities. If you later move into management it becomes more weighted toward relational abilities.

So, my recommendation is simple: find the area of IT that interests you the most, that you can be passionate about, and dive in as deep as you can. Certifications, self-study, learning beyond “what is expected” and you will do great!

Tom