Thursday, November 09, 2006


My mom likes to tell a little story about me:

When I was a little boy, we used to live in a house that had two bathrooms, one had a shower only and the other one had a bathtub only. One day she asked me which one I wanted to use, I hesitated, then replied “I want a shower”, so she takes me to the shower bathroom, then, after a couple of minutes of being in the shower I kept thinking about how nice a bath would be, so I said “I want a bath” Mom took me to the other bathroom, after that I changed my mind and asked her to take me to the shower again, at which point my Mother proceeded to whoop my ass in a very Latin fashion, the point of the story is, I am indecisive, specially when it comes to big decisions, this can be a character flaw. I never suffered from it in the Service because I knew that I had to make decisions in a timely manner, but when it comes to things in which I am allowed to ponder, I am bad, really bad.

Which takes me to today’s post, I want to take some time to discuss my decision making process. In which you will learn a few things about me.

It comes down to two choices, I have not heard back from the a couple of other companies; since I have to make a decision by next Monday, for all practical purposes they don’t count.

I have one offer from Motorola, in Ft. Lauderdale FL (my hometown) and an offer from Lockheed Martin in Owego NY.

It is not simple, it is not a trivial decision, and it’s killing me. So I will attempt to point what I like and what I don’t like about the offer, maybe that will help.

Why I like Lockheed Martin

  1. I love what they do

Since I was a little kid, I had a fascination with aircraft, especially warplanes, I just loved it, I used to draw little diagrams of plane bisections, I was in love with those things, Dad used to tell me that I was going to be an aeronautical engineer, I love airplanes as much as I love computers, here, they want to use my computer knowledge to do neat things in the leading edge of technology, I always wanted to work on something like this, since I started college I wanted to work for a company that did the sort of thing Lockheed Martin does. I feel so psyched just thinking about it.

  1. Owego NY is a good place to raise a family

Good education system,

Lower cost of living

I like the Northeastern part of the country.

I think that it’s good place to live.

Quality of life will be higher for us there

3. A chance to go to Cornell University

It’s not guaranteed, but I qualify to compete for a slot to go to the DLP program or something like that. The basic thing is that they would send me to Cornell University to get an MBA and a Masters of engineering simultaneously all paid for by the Company, but even if I don’t get that, they will pay for my Master’s degree at any University. I like that.

  1. I really liked the Managers I met.

For all that it’s worth, my first impression of the people I’d be working with was very good. They were very nice to me, and they sold me the company really well, Lockheed spared no expense to make me feel comfortable, they paid for a rental car, two nights at a nice hotel and all the meals, not only that, but, they were so damn nice.

Why I want to go to Motorola.

  1. It’s in South Florida

South Florida has been my home for 14 years, Most of my family lives here, most of my friends are here. And I know the area. Also, South Florida is paradise on earth, yeah, it’s overcrowded, yes, it’s expensive, but Ft. Lauderdale is one of the most beautiful cities in the US. Everyone wants to live here. All it takes is one visit, and you are hooked.

  1. My Mother

My Mother lives here, I don’t want to break her heart. I know she doesn’t want me to move far away. I love the way her face lights up when she sees Anthony, she is never going to tell me not to follow my dreams, but it is hard for me to leave her knowing that I had the chance to stay.

  1. My Sister

If I leave, I will miss my sister a lot. I want to see her get through college just like I did, I am very proud of her. I don’t want to leave her.

  1. The Rest of my Family

My Mother in Law helps us out, my family on both sides always help us out with big or little things. Our Hispanic culture is very family oriented. Leaving my Family and my in Laws will be hard.

  1. Motorola is not a bad job

To be honest, I never thought I would get an offer from them, most of the Electrical and Computer Engineers from the University of Miami, Florida International, Nova and FAU want to work there. Many apply, few are chosen, I applied there because I wanted to give Florida a chance, thinking that I was going to be ignored like most of my classmates, instead, they gave me a call, asked me to go interview the next day, and gave me a full day of technical interviews in which I happened to know all the answers to. If it wasn’t for Lockheed I would be happy to be there, hell, I consider myself honored that they made me an offer, they made their decision rather quickly, three days after the interview they called to offer me the job.

  1. I have friend and family that work in Motorola

One of my closest friends in college works there, my cousin works there. Many classmates are there, many of my professors do research from them.

  1. Motorola is the best engineering company in the area.

They have a good reputation here. Big company with good benefits, they offered me a salary that is about 5% higher than Lockheed. They will pay for my Masters degree, which I am want to get it from the University of Florida, one of the best schools in the country, it is not Ivy League but it’s surely the best engineering school in the state…besides FAU of course.

  1. Moving will be a big hassle

If I sell the house I will lose money, it’s a buyers market and I doubt I will be able to rent it to cover the mortgage payments, so it’s a problem that I’d rather not deal with.

Overall, I would be very happy to accept the Motorola offer if it weren’t for the fact that I had my dream job offered to me at a different place. The bigger things stopping me from jumping to Lockheed Martin are my family and the hassle of moving there which I can avoid by just staying here, but it seems to me that those are not good reasons to say no to a great job. But I can have a good job that I sort of like, and stay here all the same, but my mind does not let me turn away from a job like Lockheed.

I want to thank Martha my wife for being so supportive.

For those of you that don’t know me, you should know that Martha and I fight, we get into arguments and stuff like that, I am telling you this because I don’t want you to get the impression that we are the perfect couple, however, she has been great in giving me all the support that I need and she basically says that she will go with me wherever I decide to go.

So that is my dilemma, writing this helps me understand well the issue, and it’s back to square one. I can accept the Motorola one because it seems like it’s a win-win, I mean, great company with a good reputation, great benefits and I can stay at home and avoid all the hassle, but, on the other hand, it’s my dream job…in NY, with a chance to get my Masters degree at an Ivy league school living like kings. So, what do I do?

I. don’t. know.


Loralee Choate said...

This would be tough because both choices rock, Jose. (HOORAY!)

NY sounds amazing.


There is nothing like family.

Jon and I have stayed where we are and taken a lot of finacial losses to keep our kids close to their grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles. Family means a lot. Mormons are VERY family, pluse I have two hispanic inlaws so I understand the major family-knit culture.

It would be hard to leave that, but don't make it the only reason. Or the move. Because in the end, the move itself is not a big enough deal.

I would balance that very closely with how much your standard of living will improve AND how the job will benefit your overall career.

And (Like I know you know)see if Martha has a preference at all.
If you move away from family and friends, she and Anthony will be alone and have to make a whole new community of people while you're at work.

Big BIG choices.

Froyd said...

To help you out, my bro works at motorola in the modeling department, and has worked there the last 7 or so years, they hired him right out of college.

He likes it a lot. The company treats him very well.

I'm just tossing that out there. The decisions up to you, but I thought a little more info, personal or not, can only help your decision.

Jose said...

Your brother is a model?


Thanks Froyd. and Loralee.