IT Myth #3 – My IT Person Does Everything

This is another common IT myth. I’ve heard it many times, “I have an IT person, he’s got everything under control.”

But think about that for a minute. In other complex industries like law or medicine. In those industries, there are generalists and specialists.

Why?

Because lawyers and doctors understand that they can’t possibly be experts in every area.

Meanwhile, IT changes faster than any other industry out there. From Windows 95 to today, we’ve also seen advancements like the Internet, smart phones, the cloud, the proliferation of computer viruses and other malicious code, security threats and botnets, and many more. Yet businesses often expect their IT people to be experts in every area of IT. Often without any ongoing training.

Do you expect your in-house IT person to be an expert in every area of IT and know everything from networking, security, access control, user management, compliance, routing, threat management, servers, workstations, and licensing to disaster recovery among many other areas?

It’s just not realistic.

And the problem is compounded because people often don’t know what they don’t know. In other words, those poor IT people who are expected to know everything there is to know about IT are trying their best, but they usually aren’t even aware of the gaps in their knowledge.

Add the expectations from their business to know everything and do everything themselves and the pressure to try and manage it all alone can be very strong. This can put them in a position where they’re very hesitant (perhaps even afraid) to admit they don’t know it all or may need help.

So don’t fall for this myth.

Understand that even small business IT is complex and multi-faceted. Complex enough that one person can’t possibly be an expert in every area.

– Weston Henry

Questions:

Do you think one person can be an expert in all areas of IT?

How can you honestly know what areas your IT person knows well and what areas they don’t?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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