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Tired of your I.T. person? May 10, 2007

Posted by Matsu in Business, Information Technology, Management.

There is a commercial running on American television by an office supply company called Staples. They show this very young 20-something guy walking in, not appropriately dressed, then one manager says to another, “I thought we got rid of that guy.” The second manager responds with, “No, we can’t. He’s the only one that knows how to fix our computers.” Next, the I.T. guy enters his office and begins to play computer games while an employee asks him to take a look at his computer. The I.T. guy in the ad says he’s on a break and not to bother him.

Now, I believe that very few modern offices put up with that kind of behavior in any employee, I.T. guru or not. In fact, I work in I.T. and I would fire him. I would not want him representing my department. Nobody is truly indispensable and should never be able to get away with that kind of behavior. It shouldn’t be tolerated in any profession, much less the I.T. profession.

I imagine that most I.T. professionals, myself included are offended by this portrayal of an I.T. pro. It’s more than a little disconcerting that Staples chooses to portray the profession with such a negative stereotype.

That being said, there is some truth to the idea that I.T. people tend to be a little arrogant and are not always friendly with non-IT people. Some of us have to work at it harder than others, but we should all try to be more supportive and cooperative with those inside our organizations that are outside of our I.T. departments. After all, our job is to support them and we should do so without belittling them or making them feel like they (the non-technical person) don’t know anything about technology.

If you have not seen it before, I recommend that you visit the It Ought To Be Simple website. There is a wonderful essay there (actually more than one) about the negative attitudes and behavior of I.T. people. He makes some great points and we should all learn from it.



1. Moose - May 10, 2007


2. Duke - May 10, 2007

Very Good Points!

3. Pedro Pinheiro - May 19, 2007

Although not by my academic studies, I end being the I.T. guy in a lot of roles. I agree with you, but some people shouldn’t be allowed to be *near* computers, never mind working with them. If my aunt ever calls me again asking on how to attach a file to an e-mail message I’ll…. !”%#$”#%”#%”# !!! šŸ˜›

4. Matsu - May 20, 2007

Pedro — I’m almost afraid to ask, is your aunt’s VCR clock blinking on 12:00?

My In-Laws always called me when they needed to record a TV show on their VCR. The could never figure out how that worked and they only recorded something on TV a cople of times a year. Oh, well. The things we do for family.

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