Why we don't let the IT director diagnose problems

Help-desk tech is sitting at his desk when the IS director stops by unannounced -- and he's more than a little upset, says a pilot fish in the know.

"He asked the tech what he had to do to get a new printer," fish says. "Tech said the director would need to speak with the operations team or our purchasing manager. Then he asked if there was something wrong with the director's current printer."

Director tells him, "Yes, it's acting up again and won't print."

OK, says tech, how about I take a look at the printer and see if I can fix the issue?

Director walks tech down to his office and shows him the the printer. "See," he says, "it shows there's an error and won't let me print."

Tech looks at the printer for a moment, then tells the director he'll be right back. He walks back down the hall to the supply room, pulls a box with a yellow toner cartridge off the shelf and returns to the director's office.

He replaces the yellow toner cartridge. The flashing light indicating that the printer needs yellow toner stops flashing. The printer starts working again.

Sighs fish, "The director was happy and we didn't have to buy a new printer. But considering this was the IT director, it makes you wonder how this company continues to function."

Sharky needs a continuous stream of stories. So send me your true tale of IT life at sharky@computerworld.com. You'll get a stylish Shark shirt if I use it. Add your comments below, and read some great old tales in the Sharkives.

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