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Chris G. Williams Beware: I mix tech and personal interests here.

Yesterday I had lunch with a recruiter. It's ok, I work with her. She's one of the nice ones. We were talking and she got tickled when I referred to “the I.T. guy” at our company. She said, “you're all I.T. guys...”

This got me thinking. I don't consider myself an I.T. guy, none of my developer friends consider themselves I.T. guys. To us, the I.T. guys are the ones who come by to fix our computers, manage the network, repair the printers, etc.

Then she said that we were all I.T. people, including her. This made me laugh, and I said “no... you aren't in I.T., you're a recruiter, you're in H.R. and I'm in Product Development.”

But my mom, if she knew what I.T. was, would think I was in I.T. The lady across the town who needs help with her computer refers to me as her I.T. guy. The distictions we make for ourselves aren't always obvious to the people around us.

To me, an I.T. programmer is someone who works on internal systems for his/her employer. Someone in Product Development works on software to be sold. One isn't any higher on the evolutionary food chain than the other (in theory) but they're definitely two very different beasts.

A former co-worker (peer? mentor?) once told me that I had reached the top of the food chain now that I was in Product Development. He said that all of us P.D. programmers were prima donnas and treated differently. Thing is, we weren't really at the top of the food chain there or anywhere else. Above the P.D. guys are the architects, and depending on the company you work for, the Sales team might be considered even more important than the team that makes the product they sell.

I guess it's all relative, like driving on the highway. Anyone driving faster than you is an idiot and anyone driving slower than you is an asshole. But we're all driving faster or slower than someone, somewhere... right?

 

Posted on Friday, April 28, 2006 8:09 AM General Interest | Back to top


Comments on this post: Professional Perception (or how we see ourselves vs how others see us)

# re: Professional Perception (or how we see ourselves vs how others see us)
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Dude...Self-Actualization is MUCH better than depending on someone else to determine where in the food chain you are. In fact, I just turned down a product development job to go back into IT. That's right...I want less work stress and more hobby programming! Yeah, I'm not out there on the edge of the envelope...but I challenge myself. Yeah...maybe I'm not doing all the cool stuff at work...but I hope to be doing more cool stuff on my own.
Left by Codesailor on Apr 29, 2006 12:29 PM

# re: Professional Perception (or how we see ourselves vs how others see us)
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Hobby programming is where it's at, yo! I miss the days of actually enjoying what I was working on. One day...
Left by Chris Williams on May 01, 2006 8:37 AM

# re: Professional Perception (or how we see ourselves vs how others see us)
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how we see ourselves is far more important than how others see us.
Left by Lance on Apr 19, 2007 8:31 PM

# re: Professional Perception (or how we see ourselves vs how others see us)
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