I’m often asked if I like what I do. Yes, I like contracting. Beyond that, I really like working for the federal government.
Sure, feds catch a lot of flack, but consider this: government is the only field with the capability and mandate to do anything. Just consider the range of federal missions: forest protection (U.S. Forest Service), fighting piracy (U.S. Navy), and space exploration (NASA). This just scratches the surface of the federal government’s mission. In the private sector, most companies have a niche, and that’s not only great, but necessary. Those niche industries employ Americans, develop expertise, and drive the economy. Some larger companies like Lockheed Martin, General Electric and IBM have larger missions, but nothing approaching the scope of the federal government.
And the federal government is a single employer, which means you can switch agencies. It’s a lot like internal versus external hiring in the private sector — it’s easier to move within the federal government than it is to first get hired. This means that once you’re in and if you want to develop skills in another area, you have a leg up. Just having that option increases your job satisfaction.
So yes, I really like working for the federal government.