What began as a forum for exchanging outrageous tales of user goofiness wound up as "10 classic clueless-user stories" (in both article and download format), showcasing a few of the more bizarre accounts.
Now I'd like to force-morph the discussion into a look at the other side of the coin: IT pro foibles and blunders.
In the clueless-user
discussion thread, member peterl@... said, "Wonder
if there ever was a collection of dumb acts *by* IT people when they deal with end
users. Like asking incredibly dumb business questions or making assumptions
that make absolutely no business sense." And info@... pointed out,
"There are just as many clueless acts by technical
people that cost companies millions. Like the tech who decided to make
"one small change." A change that sent three thousand people home for
the day. Or in a regional bank where the IT dept didn't understand or believe
the business priority of a problem which resulted in over ten thousand term
deposits being voided."
Maybe our mistakes aren't quite that
colossal—or if we're lucky, they just wind up as near-misses. Like the time I
installed an Outlook 2003 beta on a production machine to do some testing and
almost caused a catastrophic enterprise-wide Exchange meltdown. KaBOOOM.
Just as users can bumble along in a
way that dumbfounds the IT staff, so can the IT staff stray into their own Clueless
Territory—and we can all learn a little from hearing about those mistakes. They
might even make us feel a little better about ourselves.
Got a good tale to tell on yourself?
Share it here or join
the discussion. Let's hear your worst.
Jody Gilbert has been writing and editing technical articles for the past 25 years. She was part of the team that launched TechRepublic and is now senior features editor for Tech Pro Research.