In this article, we will weave together the shared experiences and advice from IT professionals from various IT careers. We are providing readers with a comprehensive guide to navigating the early stages of their IT careers. Inspired by a Reddit post and written by us at Support Adventure, this guide serves as a beacon for newcomers in the IT realm, illuminating the path with IT career advice directly from those who have walked it before.


Exploring the diverse pieces of advice experienced IT professionals wish they had known at the beginning of their careers.

IT career advice, evolution of man from a newbie tech to an experienced veteran in IT illustrated

Starting an IT career can feel like navigating through a labyrinth; there are countless paths to take, with new technologies and methodologies emerging at every turn. 

At Support Adventure, we’ve had our fair share of experiences and challenges in the IT field. We understand the excitement and the uncertainties that come with beginning this journey. 

That’s why we’re diving into the treasure trove of collective wisdom found in a Reddit post, where experienced IT professionals shared the one piece of advice they wish they had when starting their careers. This article aims to shed light on those insights, providing invaluable IT career advice for those standing at the threshold of their IT adventure.

The cornerstone of thriving in an IT career is not just about mastering the latest technologies or securing certifications; it’s also about learning from personal experiences

Importance of Documenting Your Learning and Solutions

Navigating the IT landscape, especially when starting your IT career, requires more than just technical skills; it demands an organized approach to capturing knowledge. We’ve gleaned some practical tips for documentation that can serve as a compass for anyone embarking on their IT career.

Think of documentation as your trail markers in the dense forest of information technology, guiding both you and others through previously untrodden paths with ease.

Key Tips for Effective Documentation:

Start Simple: Use a digital notepad or a physical journal to jot down issues and solutions. The goal is consistency and clarity.

Detail with Brevity: Document the problem, your troubleshooting steps, and the solution clearly but concisely. Aim for clarity that allows others to follow your steps without getting lost in unnecessary details.

Organize: Use categories or tags to make your notes easy to search. This turns your documentation into a quick reference guide for future troubleshooting.

Share Your Knowledge: When possible, share your findings. This not only aids others but also opens up your work to valuable feedback.

Keep It Updated: Technologies change, and so do solutions. Regularly review and update your documentation to ensure it remains relevant.

By embracing documentation, you not only make your own IT journey smoother but also pave the way for others, fostering a culture of knowledge sharing and continuous learning in the process.

Practical Tips for Documentation When Starting Your IT Career

Student perspective: Benefits of a categorized knowledge base for troubleshooting.

Student perspective: The value of documentation is not lost on t]p09hose still in the learning phase of their IT career. u/i56500, a student, shared their regret of not maintaining a categorized knowledge base for troubleshooting past tech scenarios. Imagine having a personal encyclopedia at your fingertips, tailored to the unique challenges you’ve faced and overcome. This isn’t just about boosting efficiency; it’s about building a foundation of knowledge that grows with your career.

First Role Experience: Using digital tools for note-taking and organization.

First Role Experience: Starting your first role in IT can be overwhelming, but u/congruentopposite found a method to cut through the chaos. By using their iPads to jot down notes and then organize them into an Excel sheet, they created a quick-reference guide that’s both searchable and a learning tool. This double-duty documentation doesn’t just aid in recall but also cements understanding by engaging with the material multiple times.

Tech Support Insights and IT Career Advice: In an era dominated by digital tools, the value of pen & paper notes remains undiminished. u/BeardedBandit, who worked in tech support, shared their reliance on a standard notepad for jotting down information. This method offers a tactile and direct way of recording insights that can be particularly effective in solidifying memory. It’s a reminder that sometimes, the simplest tools are among the most powerful at our disposal.

Enterprise Data Architect: Imagine solving a complex problem, only to realize years later that the solution you’re searching for is one you devised yourself. u/FoCo_SQL, an Enterprise Data Architect, experienced this firsthand. They emphasized how documenting solutions not only aids in personal recall but can also contribute to the wider IT community. Your blog post or forum answer could be the lifeline someone else needs when facing a similar challenge. This aspect of documentation underscores its value not just for personal growth but for the collective advancement of IT knowledge.

Network Architect’s IT Career Advice: Document uncommon solutions for future reference.

Network Architect’s advice: One of the golden nuggets of IT career advice we’ve come across is from u/Hello_Packet, a seasoned Network Architect. They emphasize the importance of documenting or blogging about things you’ve learned that is not commonly found with a Google search. This is not just about creating a personal knowledge base; it’s about saving future you from the frustration of knowing you’ve solved a problem before but can’t remember how. It’s like leaving a breadcrumb trail for yourself in the vast forest of IT.

IT Career Advice on Planning and Development

A well-navigated IT career doesn’t just happen; it’s the result of strategic planning and continuous learning. Here’s how to steer your career in the right direction from the start.

Mapping Out a Career Plan

The IT field is vast, offering numerous paths and specializations. The key to finding your way is to map out a career plan. u/griminald stresses the importance of not just floating along but actively deciding what skills you want to acquire next. Having a plan helps you stay focused, motivated, and on track toward achieving your career goals. It’s like having a GPS for your career journey, ensuring you’re always moving towards your desired destination.

Learning from aimless wandering

 It’s easy to become a jack-of-all-trades but a master of none in the diverse world of IT. u/Goomancy’s experience highlights the importance of specializing and obtaining certifications like the CCNA. They shared how focusing on networking and taking on projects helped turn aimless wandering into a directed, satisfying path of career growth. Specializing doesn’t just enhance your expertise; it makes you more valuable and sought after in the job market.

In the IT realm, where change is the only constant, embracing a strategy of continuous learning and planning is crucial. Whether you’re meticulously documenting your learning journey or mapping out your career trajectory, the key is to remain proactive and engaged with your professional development. This approach not only enriches your IT career but also positions you as a valuable contributor to the field.

Communication and Networking 

Building professional relationships is the IT career advice many will give. The power of networking is strong. Don’t be afraid to meet with higher-ups; be brief and impactful!

Building Professional Relationships

In the world of IT, the strength of your professional network can be just as crucial as your technical prowess. The art of networking isn’t just about collecting contacts; it’s about building meaningful relationships that can support your career growth and development. You can take the veterans’ in IT career advice and start forming some at the beginning of your career

The Power of Networking

One often overlooked aspect of networking is the courage to reach out to higher-ups within your organization. u/jwrig offers sage advice: don’t be afraid to meet with anyone, regardless of their title. The key to these interactions is to be brief, be bold, and be gone. This approach ensures that you make an impression without overstepping boundaries. It’s about striking a balance between assertiveness and respect, showing that you value their time while also demonstrating your initiative and drive. Networking in this way can open doors to mentorships, opportunities, and insights that you might not have access to otherwise.

Work Environment and Work-Life Balance

Recognizing the signs of a toxic environment and setting personal boundaries is monumental when it comes to good work-life balance and quality of life in general!

IT career advice on work-life-balance

Toxic Work Environments

While the pursuit of career advancement is important, it’s equally crucial to recognize the impact of your work environment on your overall well-being. A toxic work culture can stifle growth, dampen morale, and even affect personal health. This is both a good as life and your IT career advice.

Choosing quality of life

Recognizing the signs of a toxic work environment is the first step toward protecting your well-being. u/CSRev151 highlights the importance of not just enduring a negative situation for the sake of experience. It’s vital to set personal boundaries and know when a job is detracting more from your life than it’s adding. Whether it’s constant negativity, lack of support, unrealistic expectations, or a culture of overwork, acknowledging these red flags can empower you to make decisions that prioritize your mental and emotional health. Remember, no job is worth compromising your quality of life. It’s about finding a balance that allows you to thrive both professionally and personally, ensuring that your career is a source of fulfillment, not distress.

In both communication and navigating work environments, the underlying theme is advocating for yourself. Whether it’s through building professional relationships or ensuring your work environment supports your well-being, the choices you make can significantly shape your IT career trajectory and quality of life.

Continuous Learning

Emphasizing Skill Development

Broadening your skill set: The necessity of learning new things and not being a “one-trick pony.”

Emphasizing Skill Development

In the rapidly evolving landscape of IT career advice from professionals is worth plenty. They say, “Resting on your laurels can mean falling behind.” The technology sector is characterized by constant change, making continuous learning not just an option, but a necessity for anyone looking to forge a successful career.

Broadening your skill set

The IT field is vast, with a plethora of specializations and niches. Sticking to a single domain can limit your career prospects and growth potential. The necessity of learning new things and expanding your skill set cannot be overstated. u/hajoet advises not to be a “one-trick pony” but to actively seek out new knowledge and skills. Whether it’s diving into network security, cloud computing, or software development, broadening your horizons can open up new career paths and opportunities. It’s about being adaptable, versatile, and prepared for whatever challenges and changes the IT world throws your way.

Continuous Learning

In IT, continuous learning is key to keeping pace with rapid technological advancements. It’s about fostering a mindset of perpetual curiosity and adaptability, ensuring you remain relevant in an ever-evolving field. Engage with online courses, webinars, and workshops to expand your knowledge base. This ongoing commitment to learning not only prepares you for the challenges of today but also positions you for future innovations.

Financial and Career Stability as IT Career Advice

Career control, avoiding unnecessary debt, and maximizing employee benefits are great IT career advice.

Financial Wisdom and Career Moves

Achieving both financial and career stability in the IT sector requires a strategic approach, not just to your job but to your life as a whole.

Infra Engineer’s comprehensive IT career advice:

A sound piece of IT career advice comes from u/vasaforever, an Infra Engineer, who underscores the importance of career control, avoiding unnecessary debt, and making the most of employee benefits. This holistic approach to career planning emphasizes not just the pursuit of professional advancement but also the management of personal finances. Avoiding debt not only provides you with more freedom to make career choices without financial pressure but also allows you to take calculated risks that can lead to greater rewards. Moreover, maximizing employee benefits, such as 401K match and tuition assistance, can significantly enhance your financial well-being over time. This strategy isn’t just about securing your current position but about paving a path toward long-term stability and success in the IT field.

IT career advice financial and career stability

Both continuous learning and financial wisdom are crucial components of a successful IT career. By constantly updating your skill set, you remain competitive and adaptable. By managing your finances wisely, you ensure that your career moves are guided by ambition and opportunity, not necessity or financial pressure. Together, these strategies create a robust foundation for both professional growth and personal satisfaction in the dynamic world of information technology.

Technical Skills and Specializations – IT Career Advice

When it comes to IT career advice, we have to mention technical proficiencies and emphasize the importance of diversifying technical skills beyond Windows environments.

Technical Proficiencies

In the realm of IT, having a broad set of technical skills can significantly enhance your career prospects. One area often highlighted for its critical importance is proficiency in Linux and Command Line Interface (CLI).

Learning Linux and CLI: 

The tech world extends far beyond the familiar confines of Windows environments, and understanding how to navigate Linux systems and use CLI can open up a whole new world of possibilities. u/CAMx264x, a DevOps Engineer, stresses the importance of diversifying your technical skills to include Linux and CLI. These skills are invaluable in enterprise environments, cloud computing, and software development, among other areas. Linux’s versatility and the power of CLI for automation and scripting make them indispensable tools in an IT professional’s arsenal. By broadening your technical proficiencies to include these areas, you’re not just enhancing your employability but also preparing yourself to tackle a wider range of challenges in the ever-evolving IT landscape.

Concluding  IT Career Advice

The collective wisdom of IT professionals emphasizes documentation, continuous learning, career planning, and the balance between technical skills and soft skills.

Concluding Advice

As we wrap up this exploration into the advice from seasoned IT professionals, a few key themes emerge that are worth reiterating. The collective wisdom shared by those who have navigated the IT industry offers a roadmap for those just starting their journey.

Documentation is Key: Keeping a detailed record of your learnings and solutions not only aids in personal recall but also contributes to the broader knowledge base of the IT community. It’s an investment in your future self and those who may one day benefit from your experience.

Never Stop Learning: The field of IT is dynamic, with new technologies and methodologies emerging at a rapid pace. Embracing continuous learning is crucial for staying relevant and competitive.

Plan Your Career Strategically: Having a clear vision for your career trajectory and actively working towards it can make all the difference. Specialize, gain certifications, and build a professional network to support your growth.

Balance is Essential: While technical skills are undoubtedly important, soft skills like communication, teamwork, and time management are equally vital. Moreover, maintaining a healthy work-life balance and choosing a supportive work environment are key to long-term satisfaction and success.

Diversify Your Skills: Expanding your technical proficiency beyond just one area, especially by learning Linux and CLI, can vastly increase your versatility and value as an IT professional.

Entering the IT field can seem daunting, but with the right approach—fueled by documentation, continuous learning, strategic planning, and skill diversification—you can navigate your career with confidence. Remember, your journey in IT is unique, and leveraging the collective wisdom of those who have walked the path before you can provide invaluable guidance every step of the way.

Encouragement for readers: To take control of your IT careers with a proactive and prepared approach.

As we conclude our journey through the shared wisdom of seasoned IT professionals, we want to leave you with a message of empowerment and a practical step forward. The IT landscape is vast and filled with opportunities for those who are prepared to seize them. Taking control of your IT career requires not just understanding the advice we’ve discussed but also taking proactive steps to implement it in your career path.

Support Adventure stands as a beacon for those ready to embark on or advance their journey in the IT field. With fully remote IT positions available, including service desk coordinator (dispatcher), IT technicians across all tiers, and system administrators, all within an MSP helpdesk environment, we offer a unique platform for growth and development. Whether you’re just starting or looking to take your IT career to the next level, joining our team can be a strategic move.

IT career advice expert skills

Why Support Adventure?

Our commitment to fostering a supportive, enriching environment for our employees is at our core. By embracing the fully remote work model, we not only offer flexibility and the comfort of working from anywhere but also the chance to be part of a diverse, global team of IT professionals. This is an opportunity to apply the principles of continuous learning, documentation, and strategic career planning in real-time, with the support of a company that values your growth and well-being.

For those on the brink of starting their IT career or those seeking a meaningful change, Support Adventure provides a platform where your skills can flourish. Our roles are designed to challenge you, encourage your professional development, and allow you to apply the technical and soft skills that are so valuable in the IT industry. With us, you’re not just finding a job; you’re stepping into a career path that values proactive learning and offers the stability and growth opportunities you’ve been looking for.

Apply to work remotely with us!

Taking Control of Your IT Career: The journey through IT is as rewarding as it is challenging. Armed with the advice and insights from those who’ve navigated its peaks and valleys, you’re better equipped to carve out your path. With Support Adventure, you have a partner in that journey, one that offers you the tools, opportunities, and environment to turn your career aspirations into reality.

We encourage you to take a proactive and prepared approach to your IT career. Reflect on the advice shared, consider where you want your career to go, and take that bold step forward with Support Adventure MSP staffing services. Together, we can achieve great things in the IT world.

Kristina @ Support Adventure

Hi there! I'm Kristina Antic, the voice behind the articles you've been enjoying on the Support Adventure blog.Welcome to the crossroads of travel, transformative career advice, and all things MSP!Since joining the team in 2020, I've been weaving my experiences from traveling across Europe and Asia into stories that resonate with tech enthusiasts and wanderlust-filled souls alike.From the world of translating and IT customer service to teaching, I’ve worn many hats, all of which I now bring together to help you navigate the exciting remote landscape.Whether you’re looking to kickstart your career in tech, dreaming of digital nomad life, or seeking the best MSP practices and staff, I’m here to share what I’ve learned in a way that feels like we’re just chatting over coffee.See you on the blog!


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