Thursday, June 22, 2017

What, not, Where

There was an interesting post on Linkedin recently:

Considering making a move to a different province in the next half year.
What do you think, where should I head? 
Where is the best place in Canada for Cybersecurity and Information Security or will be in the next few years? What cities should I be looking at besides Vancouver and Toronto?
Any advice would be much appreciated. =)

And there were a number of replies, including mine, that dutifully talked about this place and that. I was lucky enough to get a reply back from the author.

And then it hit me. I have been part of a fairly expensive class, ($5k), on what are you going to do with the rest of your life. Apologies to my friends who graciously allowed me to talk their ears off with this question. But one of the HUGE takeaways from the class was how geography doesn't matter. Remember the movie Pretty Woman?
Vivian: What would it be like?
Edward Lewis: It would get you off of the street.
Vivian: That's just geography. 
In the course I heard from a number of people and we did a number of readings from people that found when they moved from here to there, both their problems and their skills came with them. This is not to say geography does not matter at all; it does. But it is not the major driver for employment in 2017 for "knowledge workers". To take on the question:
Where is the best place in Canada for Cybersecurity and Information Security
The answer is probably "at home". Here is Fast Company and Forbes take on the topic, you have to decide for yourself. Kathy and I have been working from home for 20 years and we have enough irons in the fire at this point that no single entity can change that. 

Anyone that knows me well has heard the story of taking a friend to the hospital 8 years ago for a procedure and forgetting my smartphone at home on the charger. Now what do I do? Turns out they had a lending library so I grabbed a copy of Alex Toffler's Future Shock, (1970). Here is a story about some of the things he got right, (hint telecommunications was one of them). The bottom line for employers is that many of the best and brightest are going to leave near a beach, or a lake, or somewhere else they consider desirable . . . then we will consider whether to do work for you.

Social interaction! Ah yes, that is important to most of us. There are tons of scholarly articles on telecommunications and social interaction, here is one. Let me spare you the pain or reading them. I just finished a Skype call with my boss. I fly next week to Seattle, one of the world's tech centers. I just had dinner with Jim Manico, one of the top minds in secure coding, who - get this - lives on the island of Kauai. And most importantly, God blessed me with a fantastic wife and dog. No wonder I smile all the time.

I do not know that I could survive and thrive in a world without coffee, but I know I can go the rest of my life without working in a sea of cubicles.

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