Buckle down. Learn Wi-Fi. Get paid.

A young kid (ok, 22) came out to my place the other day to hook me up to DirecTV. I got to talking to him about his career and future plans. He presented himself very well; smart, courteous and knew that he didn’t know everything but was willing to learn. I thought to myself… give me six months with this guy and I could triple (maybe quadruple) his salary.

Why? Because Wi-Fi is one of the hottest technologies out there and we are lean for great people. Marcus Burton and I frequently discuss the need for more solid Wi-Fi people and the conversation usually ends in frustration because we need the help but can’t find the pool of talent.

There is a need and any strong vendor will pay for talent. A lot. Most of you reading this are most likely in the field already but for those of you that aren’t… A Wi-Fi SE starts at $120k and I know of some making $200k+ with commissions. No degree required but bet your ass there is plenty of study.

None of us out there started out as Wi-Fi experts. I used to deal poker and Wi-Fi friends of mine used to be TSA agents, car salesman and many are prior enlisted military. Nothing against those professions but they seldom offer $120k+ salaries, stock options and benefits. Wi-Fi does.

What does it take? First off, you do need a certain aptitude for technology. I find that most people can actually fit that role if they are properly introduced to the fundamentals. Second, you need to be able to lock yourself in a room and learn. Read, watch videos, play with the equipment, configure, capture, analyze, rinse, repeat.

It also will really fast track your Wi-Fi career if you get certified. Come to any of us in the industry with your CWNA, CWAP and CWDP and if you don’t get a job it’s because you cheated on the exams or reek of roasted garlic and rotten milk. Customers have to like to be around you after all.

If you or someone you know is looking for a career change, look no further. It could be the best move you’ve ever made.


6 thoughts on “Buckle down. Learn Wi-Fi. Get paid.

  1. cinergywifi says:

    Learning ( & still learning) 802.11, was the best thing that ever happened to me. It was people like you, Keith, and the others that helped me build my passion for this career.

    I look at everything through a different set of eyes, than I did 3 years ago. Next year it will be different again. This career has much to give, to those who attack it with the want to learn, perform, and help teach the next guy.

    Thanks for all your help and the willingness to be patient and teach a brick every now and then.

    Nice article also!


  2. Cameron says:

    Completed CWNA a few days ago. Hope to come a’knocking in a few years!

    • gthill says:

      Congrats! Who says you can’t come knocking now? 🙂


      • Cameron says:

        Big Brother, Uncle Sam, and the USG. I’ve got a commitment to fulfill for 24 months, then freedom. I’d love to!, even talked with Rob M. about it. Alas for now, but thanks for the vote of encouragement. 😉

  3. Ron Valdez says:

    Well said GT. Wi-Fi and LTE will be the two wireless standards left standing. Lots of opportunity for motivated individuals. Most of the really good ones have a certain inquisitive nature to solve problems. A good attitude and aptitude goes a long long way…

  4. you should’ve just listed all of my old jobs.

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