Post Academic

The Hidden Admin: Your IT Guy/Gal

Posted in Transfer Your Skills by postacademic on August 11, 2010
Tags: , ,

PhotobucketRecently, Arnold and I described the administrators you will encounter in the Academic World and the Hamster World. But I realized that I left out one crucial Hamster World Admin: the IT Guy/Gal.

IT People are rare in the academic world due to the latest budget cuts. It isn’t that they aren’t necessary, but for some reason universities don’t have nearly enough of them. The presence of IT people is a Hamster World luxury that I greatly appreciate.

So, how do you deal with IT People? Well, for starters, IT People have a reputation for being eccentrics. I once briefly worked with an IT guy who showed up on the job wearing a dog collar. They will not look like you, nor will they act like you. They understand how much power they have since we are all dependent on computers, so they do not follow the same set of rules that you do.

For that reason, they might seem like rude slobs who don’t know what they are doing. That is not so. Treat them with respect, and thank them whenever they fix your computer or get you back online.

More after the jump! Image of a geeky rubber duck by powerbooktrance from Wikimedia Commons under a Creative Commons license.

If you ever have a complaint, do not scream or get upset. (I have been upset before and it bit me in the butt …) Simply give the IT person as much information as possible. Let him or her know what programs you were running when your computer started acting strangely. If you can give them the operating system or browser version, even better. They’ll love you for it because it makes their job easier.

IT People should be handled like any other admin, only with perhaps even more respect and deference. Otherwise, you’re going to be stuck explaining to your boss why you didn’t finish that project on time, and the IT Person will be hiding in a corner, giggling.

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