Etiquette Tip of the Week:  The IT department

Bio: Callista Gould is a certified etiquette instructor and founder of the Culture and Manners Institute.

What is the most catastrophic computer crash you ever had?

I can think of an epic laptop fail. A colleague sitting at the same table in our open floor plan workplace said, “Do you smell something burning?”

What was burning, was me. Smoke was seeping from the back of my laptop. If I had to solve that problem on my own today, I would grab oven mitts and toss that laptop out the back door into the snow, which is plentiful in Iowa right now.

Back then, I turned the laptop over to Victor, one of our IT professionals, who opened it up with the precision of a surgeon and worked valiantly to save my hard drive and content.

“Time of death” was called later that afternoon. It was pre-Cloud and the contents were lost. Victor ordered a new laptop for me.

Our tradition with the Etiquette Tip of the Week is to dedicate the week of Valentine’s Day to the men and women of the IT Department, because in any organization, the IT Department needs love.

We often forget about them until we need them. And when our computer combusts and we do need them, we are stressed, irritable and not nice to be around at all.

When they resuscitate our computer and it’s performing like an Olympic athlete, we forget about the IT professionals, until the next time we need them.

The bigger message is to show appreciation for all the people who assist you in your work. Learn their names before you need them. Write a note of thanks. Send a note to their supervisor about the good work they did. And maybe even buy a treat, like donuts or bagels.

Happy Valentine’s Day, IT professionals! Thank you for all you do.

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Get more tips at the Culture and Manners Institute.