People aren’t ‘users’

Working in IS, you’ll be used to ‘users’. We are the only industry apart from drug dealers who call our customers ‘users’.

In technology, it’s easy to decide what the ‘users’ require. We rarely ask the questions of our customers properly to understand what they want, what ignites their fire. We choose the shiniest quickest result.

And I’ve been that geek a bunch of times. I’ve been told that my IQ is higher than my EQ. Yeah, I get it. I want to find a technological solution to the problem. It’s easier to do that, rather than peel back the layers of the onion. Peeling onions makes you cry.

The problem isn’t a problem, it’s a path. A path that is new, fresh, scary as hell. Yet, it holds so much promise.

As a geek, am I ready? Fuck no.

As a human bean, yes. Yes, I’m ready to believe.

I met with a guy today. He’s worked in IT for a while. His enthusiasm was contagious, you knew he held the person who relied on his work as the level he would achieve. I’m sure you’ve met him on your journey.

He believed in his path, his way. He embraced responsiveness; a real servant leader.

And that made me think. I’ve always tried to be what I thought the customer / user wanted. I’m a Fuckwit.

I made a connection this weekend. One that causes me to write this. It’s not a 7 hour slog to write this, it’s free-flowing (apart from correcting spelling). So forgive the rambling.

Those in Information Technology have to change. Me too.

We all have dreams, we all have setbacks. Belief is what gets you through. Learning improves us, it makes us hungry to achieve. Please; learn every single day.

IT’s default activity is to control. We like tying our stakeholders up in knots. That always works doesn’t it?

So my challenge to you is to forget the word ‘users’.

Don’t fucking text or email them. Talk to them. Face to face, mano a (wo)mano. You’ll deliver results quicker than you could ever expect.

And yes, they will fall in love with you.

Just drop the #user tag. For all of us.

Be a #lover.