How do you do IT?

I get asked this a lot, “How do you know all this stuff about computers,” or “How did you know how to fix that?”  What’s really fun is when I’m asked how many years I went to school for IT.  The answer? Zilch.

I love fixing things.  I’ve always enjoyed tearing apart broken things and seeing what they are made of.  I’ve also enjoyed making things work together.  I used to love selling candy in downtown Chicago and outfitting my buddies with 2-way radios and having a network of guys on different blocks all able to communicate.  Sure, I’m weird, but it was fun!

Apparently I have a mind for troubleshooting.  I’m pretty good at finding and fixing problems.  Must be some weird analytical mind that God gave me.

Here’s the nuts and bolts: Problem. When did it last work?  What changes were made to it? What makes it work? What makes it not work? Google, ya, a LOT of GOOGLE!!!

Problem

Find the cause.  Most problems have a cause.  If you can find the cause, then it’s usually a problem solved!  Oh, you moved your computer to the other side of the desk?  Did you plug the network cable in?  Fixed!

Problem Solving has always been a fun challenge for me.  I didn’t always love the story problems in math class, but I do enjoy conquering an issue.

No known cause?

So you have a problem but there is no known cause.  Well, then it’s a process of elimination.  I know that for the computer to work, the following things must be in place. (i.e. power, network, cables connected, mouse connected, screen connected…yah, I’ve seen most all of it!). Most problems are connecMted to a recent change that was made that needs to be reversed or tweaked.

You are not alone

Usually the problem can be fixed with a little TLC.  Then there’s Google for the rest.  Many problems have been solved by a google search.  Very few problems are unique to the situation.  There are standards and protocols that are in place, and when something isn’t working, you examine those standards and protocols to see what is missing.

No Blame

Things happen.  I could cast blame around and make people mad, or I can just accept the fact that in life things break, and move along with my day!

Solution

When a problem is conquered, it needs to be added to the list of “fixes.”  For me, much of this is mental, but more technical fixes are notated in my go-to organization tool at the time.  For now, that’s trello.com.  Go check it out if you are the sticky-note type like myself!

God’s Grace

The Lord has helped me, and there have been quite a number of times where I seemed to have nowhere else to go and He helped me.  Usually after some prayer – then I kick myself for not praying sooner!

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