Three Ways to Keep the Dream Alive

Career getting too predictable? We profile three security execs who found ways to keep their jobs exciting and their careers moving forward.

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"We'd get something running smoothly, and then go find something else to invent," she says. "At one point we were working on product development projects. At first you might think, What does that have to do with business continuity? But it worked. Typically, business continuity would come after the products were developed. Instead, we were able to help mitigate risks way up front and that was rewarding."

Near the end of her tenure, Clinton says, she felt the job had started to slip into a management role. So she wasn't too upset when Cingular bought AT&T Wireless and released all business continuity directors.

She brought her expertise to T-Mobile but says it's a mistake to think she could just build a BC/DR group at T-Mobile by applying what she did at AT&T Wireless. In fact, the differences between projects are most intriguing to her. "People try to do that templated approach and repeat their processes, thinking it will be easier, and find it doesn't work and it's not fun," she says. "For me, it's figuring out what's different about a company and how I can apply my passion and knowledge that makes it worth doing."

Such focus on big projects can imply mad amounts of work, mad deadlines and hence mad hours. But Clinton says part of what's kept her career a dream is an insistence on balancing work and life. Barring some crisis that must be managed around the clock, Clinton says she keeps her work hours in check and makes sure she's also spending enough time focused on her life outside of work. She also takes time to turn off the cell phone. "There's this drive with all our gadgets to be available 24/7, and I'm adamant about a balance," she says.

And about finding new projects as soon as she realizes she's watching the clock.

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Copyright © 2006 IDG Communications, Inc.

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