If you're happy with your current employer, you'll look for every opportunity to move up internally or ensure the long-term stability of a role you're already satisfied with. But lifetime tenure with the same company, for better or worse, is decreasingly common. IT pros with executive ambitions might ultimately find that the greenest pastures are with another organization.
"Sometimes the best career decision is to leave the company," Levy said. This gets back to square one: getting involved outside your company, which will increase your visibility with recruiters and potential employers. "No company can provide a consistently innovative, creative environment," Levy added. "It's the pyramid: As you move up, there are only so many places you can go [internally]."