All professionals have experienced that dreaded moment in their career when our precious electronics fail us. We can’t get our important presentation up on the screen, our internet connection is lost, or the printer suddenly stopped working while we’re on deadline. Before you reach for the phone and call your IT department or consultant, be your own IT guy or girl and try these simple steps:
- Update or Refresh- Sometimes when we are working with technology we miss simple steps or expect things to work faster and harder than they should. Pushing the refresh or update button associated with your device or software gives both of you a moment to breath and start the process over again.
- Power-down and Restart- If the less invasive refreshing doesn’t work, it’s time to power the device off and back on. This can also mean unplugging wires and plugging them back in again. This is the easiest way to reset a frozen screen on any device, but it can often result in a loss of data so use it sparingly.
- Basic Hardware Check- Have you ever called IT in a panic only to find that your problem was as simple as needing a new USB cord for your printer or new batteries for your wireless mouse? Avoid this embarrassment by checking and replacing all of your wires, cords, adaptors, and batteries before you make that call.
- Ask a colleague or friend- Before you pay an outside contractor or divert essential resources from your IT department, have a friend or colleague see if they can diagnose your technological disease. Even if you’re cohort isn’t very tech savvy, sometimes you just need another set of eyes to find a simple issue.
These simple steps are just the beginning of the journey to becoming your own IT department. Check out easy-to-understand IT tutorials and books to expand your knowledge further. Knowledge is power, and the power to tame technology will take you far in today’s professional climate!