As an IT pro, what keeps me up at night is worrying about critical projects that absolutely cannot have downtime, where one mistake affects a large group of people. But who notices if all things IT are running smoothly? It won't make the front page, so thank goodness for friends and family who at least pretend to show an interest when we explain how we yet again saved the day.
But this is the real world, and emergencies are nearly inevitable. Though you may not wish for the blame to fall on other departments or workers, it can be a relief when IT is not the cause -- and gets the credit for our quick actions.
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I happened to be at the right place at the right time for a consulting gig with a small-business customer. I have a regular IT job, but I also take on-the-side assignments, where I handle a range of tasks, from IT to more tech-oriented duties such as repairing hardware or laying cables.
One day I was onsite at one of these customer locations: a small company with around 10 employees. About a month before, I had helped them move their networking equipment and servers to a new location. On this particular day, I was there to help with check-printing issues plaguing their accounting person.
For some strange reason, the printed checks didn't look right. I downloaded and installed the latest driver for the newly bought printer in question, but the format appeared off. I printed a test Microsoft Word document and no problem -- the printed output was just like the preview. But when the checks went through the printer, the output didn't match the preview.
I tried all of the driver versions for the printer, but the checks still weren't up to par. I decided to revert all the settings on the printer to the factory default and see if that made any difference -- it didn't. They didn't work on another printer, either.