I work as a solo developer in a small company. There's more than enough work, but the same does not apply for money. Thus, I won't be seeing any new colleagues in the near future.
I am responsible for absolutely everything that has do to with IT operations. This involves development and maintenance of software used in-house, development and maintenance of various websites which our clients use, website infrastructure, local network infrastructure including maintenance of several servers and in-house support to mention the most immediate things.
I really enjoy 95% of what I do, and I've got a high degree of flexibility in my work. I get to decide what do when, and no one really tells me what do to except that I now and then sit down with my colleagues to create a roadmap for what I need to get done. I do consider myself to have a high work ethic and being above average focused on what I do, so things get done.
However, I've come to the point where I really miss having other people around me who work with the same. Even though I need to get familiar with a wide range of technologies as I am a solo developer, I have the feeling that I am missing out one the "knowledge sharing" which other "like minded" people who work in bigger companies are taking part in. I don't really have anyone to discuss programming obstacles and design decisions with - and I am starting to miss that. Also, I'm worried about what future employers might think of this "hermit" who has been working on his own for too long to ever be able to take part in a team.
However, on the other side, I'm thinking that I won't get my current degree of flexibility in a larger company. I'll be seeing a lot more strict deadlines, late hours and specialized areas of work. Also; I'm not sure if this idea of "knowledge sharing" will ever take take place?
Has anyone else been in this situation? Is it a good idea seen from a career perspective and a personal development perspective? Should I consider moving on to a bigger place to (maybe) become a part of a larger group of developers and "like minded" people? In other words, will the grass be greener on the other side?