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  • #2175816

    First IT manger’s job


    by hayhead533 ·

    Greetings All, I just landed my first IT mgr position. I’ll admit that I’m a little nervous. It’s a small non-profit org w/ domain, FTP, Exchange & SQL servers. 30 work stations & 45 users.Windows Server 2003 NOS. Any comments or useful tips anyone might like to share would be most appreciated. Frey

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    • #3234795


      by oz_media ·

      In reply to First IT manger’s job

      First of all, good for you!

      Secondly, don’t let it take over your life.

      Thirdly, nobody can know everything about computers, you WILL run into problems, relax and take time to solve them properly.

      and Finally, good for you! 🙂

    • #3234794

      Don’t change anything

      by tony hopkinson ·

      In reply to First IT manger’s job

      ’til you know how it works now.
      The geeky tech losers foolish enough to allow to tell them what to do are a valuable asset not a cost.
      Resist any temptation, to put your own immediate personal stamp on your department, until you know where everybody’s toes are.
      You can’t be nice all the time, being straight all the time will be far more appreciated anyway.

      • #3233461

        Congrats & some quick advice

        by lb63640 ·

        In reply to Don’t change anything

        1. Find any and all documentation regarding the system: licensing, software vendors, network diagrams, details for cable drop points, etc. Can’t find any, start your own collection ASAP!

        2. If possible, develop a rapport with whomever was the previous manager of the department. They will have special insight into challenges you will face with the equipment and office politics.

        • #3339786


          by warpindy ·

          In reply to Congrats & some quick advice

          This is some very good advice that the other two have posted. But just in case you have never meet the previous manager try and talk to other department heads to get a feel of what they think the IT department. This will give you insight in help desk issues, hardware/software and genreal office politics.

    • #3234777

      Way to go

      by craig herberg ·

      In reply to First IT manger’s job

      Congratualtions on your new job. First order of business should be to learn who is who and what is what. Learn what you can about your staff, their strengths and weaknesses, who you can count on, etc., but more importantly, learn about your customers, especially the toughest ones. It’s always nice to hear what you’re doing right, but you really need to figure out what your challenges and opportunities are. Be very careful about what you promise, because things always seem simpler than they really are. Last but certainly not lease — don’t panic. You are going to do a great job!

      Good luck.

      Craig Herberg

      • #3234704


        by oz_media ·

        In reply to Way to go

        Just buy some knee pads and find out who to b**w first.

        • #3234674


          by craig herberg ·

          In reply to OR

          is a tough crowd!

        • #3233426

          LMFAO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

          by tomsal ·

          In reply to OR

          Sorry that one just caught me off-guard, which wasn’t good as I was drinking water at the same time and nearly sprayed my monitor with it.


          You sick bastitch! 🙂

          (sad but

    • #3234669

      Work on them … the staff!

      by thamakodi ·

      In reply to First IT manger’s job

      Tip #01: The key to being a good manager (assuming it is your goal) is by keeping the people who hate you away from those who are still undecided.

      Don’t waste your time trying to find out who is who … at this stage, they all hate you.


    • #3234639


      by skywalker_al ·

      In reply to First IT manger’s job

      I started my first IT Manager job about 6 weeks ago and so far, so good. I would take some time to ‘learn the landscape’. It is hard to develop a plan of attack until you know what weapons you have (staff stengths and weaknesses)and the goal to reach (vision of the company as a whole for the IT Dept). I am giving it 2 months, before I really start diving into projects of my own. I am still completing the ones my predecessor didn’t finish. Take your time, present a professional attitude and you will do just fine.

    • #3234600

      Good for you :)

      by seanc ·

      In reply to First IT manger’s job


      Now that you have made the transition, good for you. However, you are now one step closer to Officer/Director Level. So my advice will be to hone your skills on interacting with upper management because you are the bridge between IT and business unless there is a CIO. It’s better that you are in smaller company because you can build your skills without being too overwhelmed.

      I know you’ll do just fine.

    • #3233395

      Thanks All

      by hayhead533 ·

      In reply to First IT manger’s job

      Thank you all for your words of encouragement. I’m taking it day by day.

    • #3233293


      by cxy ·

      In reply to First IT manger’s job

      First, congratulation to you.

      I am sure that the organization choose you because of your good background and track record in IT.

      To start with, you need to get full assessment of current situation. All IT related information from the configuration of infrastructure to business processes in the organization, you should gather as soon as possible and as complete as possible.

      From that baseline, you will have a global picture of IT requirements. What you have to do next is to create a plan of what IT should accomplish.

      Since your organization is not in IT business, you don’t want to make them suffer from IT cost. By keeping the cost of IT infrastructure low, and providing your users with good support is the only way you can keep everybody happy.

      So, I suggest you to also consider changing the environment to a lower cost infrastructure. For server and application, you may want to consider Open Source solution. OS: Linux, database server you can choose from MySQL, PostgreSQL, etc. Mail server can use Qmail or Postfix. And so on.

      But, don’t rush. Do the assessment as thorough as possible, so that you can find best solution. If the users is satisfied with current system, and the cost is not a problem, then you should be very happy. All you need to do is keep the system ready for use.

      Good Luck.

      • #3233289

        Reply To: First IT manger’s job

        by angry_white_male ·

        In reply to Good!

        The cost for changing the environment can be risky and get very expensive as there can be hidden costs and other pitfalls when you do the migration. Does the benefit of free-to-cheap software outweigh the risk of not having quality support when you need it most (i.e., disaster recovery scenario)? Bottom line: you get what you pay for.

        I’ve worked in development environments where it was on an open-source/freeware platform and the results were disastrous as customers laughed at our sales reps when they realized they were paying $1,000’s something developed on freeware.

      • #3233221


        by bill.affeldt ·

        In reply to Good!

        Depending on the type of manager you are…..
        Some IT management position are by definition managment of a system infrstructure.
        Others are managers of people and process.

        I am assuming you have a staff of techies.
        Probably the biggest challenge you will face is a desire to dive deep into technical issues.
        ADVICE – Understand the issues but do not dive into them. Your job is now to enable your staff to be succesful. If they are wildly succesful …. YOU will be wildly succesful.

        And if you are smart… you will always hire people who are technically superior to you and take their advice and knowledge and use it to make sound business decisions. You are now managing a critical piece of the business and that is your job. Configuring routers, coding, testing etc. are NOT your job. You are however accountable for these activities getting done.

        A good tool to use is a RACI chart.
        R-responsible (the doer)
        A-accountable ( whose head is on the block if it doesnt get done
        C- Consulted ( who to get clarification orr advice from)
        I – Informed (who needs to know what is going on)

        This will help you to understand your role and keep you out of the mechanics. The only time you should do mechanics is when there is a real emergency.

        And the last thing …..
        A boss tells people what to do.
        A manager sets direction and guides his staff to implementation.

        Be a manager not a boss.

        And the very last thing

    • #3233290

      Do you have subordinates?

      by angry_white_male ·

      In reply to First IT manger’s job

      Are you ***the*** IT guy, or are you in charge of a whole department? From the sounds of it you may have one or two people in addition to yourself.

      In any event – assess everything top to bottom. How up to date is everything – software, hardware? Are you legal in a S/W licensing sense? Are your servers still under warranty or at least a maintenance plan? How can you improve service and reduce costs? Find out what your users like and dislike about the IT dept – build upon the likes, and fix the dislikes. Does management support IT and does IT support management (it’s a two-way street). Does the organization factor IT into the equation when making decisions? Do you own your budget – or is someone else pulling the purse strings? Make sure there’s a disaster recovery plan in place. Are your servers in a secure location with climate control/fire suppression?

      You may find that you walked into a fantastic position or you may find that this is a job that you’ll live to regret. How well you handle it is up to you and your ability to make your users happy without driving yourself and your staff bonkers. Don’t let management pressure you into projects that you don’t have the resources to complete – unless they’re willing to open the checkbook and give you what you need. Don’t let management or users dictate IT policy – that’s your job… however policy is worthless if management doesn’t support it.

      Your employees… are they qualified or worthless pieces of s–t or knowledgeable and respected? Send the deadweight packing and bring in people who are qualified and dedicated.

      And finally – the boss isn’t always right nor does he know it all. Listen to your people – foster a teamwork/collaborative environment. Take the guys out to lunch once in a while – make sure the thankless work they’re doing goes rewarded.

      Hopefully most of these questions were answered before you accepted the job with answers that are satisfactory enough that you aren’t walking into a complete and utter mess (unless you like that sort of challenge!).

      • #3233251

        But don’t ever

        by craig herberg ·

        In reply to Do you have subordinates?

        refer to your staff as subordinates.

        • #3339760


          by tony hopkinson ·

          In reply to But don’t ever

          is much more polite.

          That was a joke by the way !.

          Friends is a bad idea as well. Fellow professional’s a tad egalitarian.
          One of my bosses used to refers to us as his boys and girls, worked for him.

      • #3339761

        I’m the “IT” guy

        by hayhead533 ·

        In reply to Do you have subordinates?

        I’m the only one. The staff is pretty much computer illiterate. So far, so good. Just minor problems.”My printer doesn’t work.” (It needed a new cartridge.)”I’m getting no sound from the speakers.” (Try plugging them in completely and turn up the volume in media player.)Simple stuff. The big boss is calling in a consultant to do a simulated disaster recovery. That should be interesting. I’ll make sure to let ya’ll know how it went. Frey

    • #3233201

      My advice

      by jamesrl ·

      In reply to First IT manger’s job

      As a new manager, there is always a temptation to make a mark by making “big” changes as soon as possible. Resist this urge.

      Instead, look for what we call “low hanging” fruit. This are the simple little things that make a big difference – the quick and easy wins. Get a few of those behind you, and you will find that making larger changes will suddenly become easier.


    • #3340131

      Good for you

      by oscaro ·

      In reply to First IT manger’s job

      The goal is to be invisible when it comes to operational issues and very visible when it comes to new projects.I would suggest that initially, and before starting to change things, you become very familiar with your environment.

      Be assured that if you don’t know the answer somebody else does. A search engine can be a very good friend. Be calm, something will always break down so don’t be surprised. Identify critical equipment and determine replacement times. What needs to be in stock? What can wait? What’s under warranty and what has maintenance contracts. Guard company data like your life depends on it; this goes for the company officers workstation data as well. Make sure backups get done properly and do a test to make sure that restores work and you’re familiar with the process.

      Interestingly, there is always at least one user that will drive you nuts. Push to get him/her trained and at least minimize the problem.

      Above all enjoy the opportunity.

      Good luck.

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