Twenty Six Ways Doing IT Support is Better Than Being a Pastor
by Dan Phillips on the Pyromanics blog
Unusually emphatic disclaimer: This is satire (săt’īr’
– "A literary work in which human vice or folly is attacked through
irony, derision, or wit"). One hopes that every item is ponderable; the
only thing I don’t mean at all is the title — and I really, really don’t mean the title. All clear? Tongues in cheek, then. Here goes:
For the most part:
People come to you for help — instead of assuming that, if you really
knew your job, you would intuitively know they needed help, and come to
them without being asked.
2. Everyone immediately tells you, to the best of his ability, what his or her actual issue is.
3. Everyone who asks you a question really wants to hear the answer.
4. Everyone who asks you for help really wants to he helped.
5. Everyone who calls you really does want his/her computer to work the very best it can.
6. You and your callers agree that computer bugs and problems are bad, and should be done away with.
When you identify viruses, spyware, unwanted popups, and crashes as
"bad," and target them for elimination, the folks you help don’t accuse
you of being harsh and judgmental.
8. Nobody who calls you is actually in love with the computer problems and misbehaviors they’re experiencing.
When you identify a computer malady you want to eradicate, nobody can
wave a book or point to a Big Name who argues that it is actually the
latest, greatest "thing" in computers, and should be earnestly sought
after, cherished, cultivated, and spread abroad.
Nobody who calls you for help thinks that he’s hearing a little voice
in his heart telling him that what you’re saying is just so much smelly
11. Everyone to
whom you give sensible counsel will hear, heed, remember, and follow
that counsel — they won’t insist on "feeling an inner peace" before
12. Everyone thinks you do crucial, important, and respectable work; nobody assumes that it is because you can’t get a "real job."
13. Everyone assumes you’re well-trained, know what you’re doing, and know at least some things they do not already know.
14. While you are expected to be knowledgeable and competent at what you do, you are not expected to be perfect.
Most times, you know immediately when you’ve helped someone; you don’t
have to wait six months, six years, or six decades, to see whether your
fix has “taken” or not.
On the worst day, if you do even a half-decent job, you can go home
knowing for certain that you’ve really helped 5, 10, 15, 20 or more
17. If you don’t know the answer, it’s probably on Google. Somewhere.
When you discover a new, better, more effective way to accomplish the
goals you share with the folks you help, they’re happy — not angry at
you because it’s different from "the way we’ve always done it."
19. The people you help don’t care how you’re dressed.
20. The people you help don’t care how many committees your wife does or doesn’t head up.
21. The people you help don’t hold your children to standards their children couldn’t even spell.
22. The people you help don’t periodically form secret committees and whisper-campaigns to get you ousted.
The people you help don’t all assume they know how to do your job
better than you do, while actually knowing next to nothing about it.
24. Everyone is fairly clear on what your job actually is: fix their computer so they can get back to work, or work better.
The people you help evaluate you by whether you do or do not do your
actual and well-defined job effectively — not by how you "make" them
26. The people you help aren’t judging you as inferior to a beloved support technician who died ten years ago.