A few weeks ago I recommended a mix of software development books to a coworker which prompted a question on what I really wanted to do with my career.
The list of recent reads included Code Complete 2, Clean Code, and Joel on Software. However, I'm not an official software developer. I started in a computer science program at the local state university and was eventually hired as a Web development intern. But I've switched tracks a few years ago by first becoming a business analyst and now a project manager. I'm finishing a degree in IT now and I still help maintain, program, and create new projects using SQL, XSLT, .NET, and the occasional script. I like both programming and project management!
Can wanting to do it all hurt my career development? Someone else recommended that you need to go wide before going deep. But I'd hate to get into a "what exactly do you do?" type position. I'd like to stay relevant.
Maybe that's the point. Seth Godin suggests, no pleads, with readers to be unique creative "linchpins" to succeed in today's work environment. Being authentic, unique, and at the edge of the box, rather than completely outside, is his recommended path to security.