The great divide between the geek and the user

In most offices, schools and everywhere else where people use computers, there is a great divide among the users of the computers and the people who support these computers.

Rarely do these two groups speak the same language and you might even think that they are from different planets. This is a two way street with each side thinking they are correct in the “us” versus “them” mentality. ┬áThe users think that the IT support is an arrogant Dilbert like character with certifications but no charm, while the IT support person thinks that the user has no clue about a computer and would be better off using an abacus.

The IT support officer perspective

Many IT support specialists have gone to hours of courses, learning about computers and have been working on computers since they were teenagers. They have certifications and degrees in the field and a confidence about how computers work and what goes wrong with them. One little secret that they may not share though, is that they might take only a little span of time to solve problems because they have seen the problems multiple times this month and just want to fix it fast. Most organizations buy similar computers in regard to specs, brand and configuration, so the error that one user gets another one will probably get it as well. After the IT support person sees this so many times he will eventually get into the “shut up and reboot” mode where the user becomes more of an annoyance than a person.

The IT support department has categories of users that range from, the user who knows nothing to the ones who know enough to be dangerous. A good IT support person treats each user accordingly. This may be off putting to users and even bordering or offensive but the IT support team is protecting its territory and trying to prevent more work for the IT department if the user gets too brazen with company property and breaks it altogether.

So in the end, IT support has a solution to the madness but not always the charm that the user would like. When IT support tells the user that he is dealing with a serious ID ten T error, the user is clueless that support is actually just calling the user an IDIOT because the geek has seen the same problem five times this month but the user wants to think that the problem is unique. IT specialists are very busy and can sometimes be seen as arrogant, but they too have a job to do and they want to fix the blinking printer button as fast as they can so as to move to the next computer disaster.

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