This week was strange for me, to put it mildly. First a product manager from 1 of the biggest competitors from the company I work for wants to follow me on Twitter and earlier this week a person actually managed to annoy/frustrate me.
For people who had the disadvantage to know me personally, they would know it’s not very easy to do that… so my compliments to the guy! 😉
Then I started to realize something… many IT-Pro’s feel that users are frustrating them. They are not in any way driven by knowledge, and so it can be very challenging to talk to them and try to explain something which seems way out of their league, right?
Wrong! Read on why…
In my case it had nothing to do with my work, but nevertheless I could imagine that the annoyance was about the same 😉
Now let’s take this and create a simple list:
User –> Power User –> System Administrator –> System Engineer –> Consultant –> Vendor –> Product Architect
Since a vendor cannot exist without users that use their product, they are all interdependent! One cannot exist without the other… call it a “Circle of life” if you will.
As I’m writing this post, I’m watching Star Wars 1… to quote Qui-Gon (Liam Neeson):”There is always a bigger fish”.
Another way of thinking about this:
People can ask me IT-related stuff… but please don’t ask me how create a paycheck! With taxes this, taxes that, insurance and more stuff like that. For something like that I will go to someone who actually knows how to do that.
It is likely that also goes the other way around. My accountant can fill in the paperwork, but when his laptop crashes he comes to me… he does not know how to fix it.
In short: Everyone has their respective field in which they operate, acquire experience and knowledge. Respect that, and in that way also respect their lack of knowledge when it comes to your field of experience!
Anyway, I hope that you think of this post when you talk to someone that annoys you for their lack of knowledge. It’s not their lack of knowledge that is the problem, but your lack of empathy!
Not a technical post, but I think it’s still useful for people who just started in IT… but also to the ones that are in there a bit longer… 😉