By Caerley Hill
You may recognize May 25 as a hallowed holiday in geekdom: Geek Pride Day. While that day is a great excuse to celebrate everything that makes you unique, what if we all started doing this daily? Nowadays geek isn’t the derogatory term that some of us knew in our youth; in fact, these days it seems that everybody geeks out about something.
Anyone who grew up a geek knows that the road to adulthood can be a rocky one; it takes a lot of courage to be different. Famous self-proclaimed “geek”, Simon Pegg, said it best in one of my favorite quotes.
Being a geek is all about being honest about what you enjoy and not being afraid to demonstrate that affection. It means never having to play it cool about how much you like something. It’s basically a license to proudly emote on a somewhat childish level rather than behave like a supposed adult. Being a geek is extremely liberating.” – Simon Pegg
With some help from Paul Glen over at Leading Geeks, we put together some tips for mighty IT pros that want to embrace their inner geek every single day.
- Listen for what’s important. We all have something that drives us to pursue our passions. So as a manager, it’s essential that you can listen for what’s important to others. Whether you’re dealing with a customer on a remote support session or convincing your boss to adopt a new software solution, try to understand what’s important to your audience in the situation.
- Expose your desire. Almost as important as listening is being able to balance your needs with those of your clients or team members. When you are vocal about your desired outcome in any professional situation, people feel more confident in predicting your behavior because they understand your motivations.
- Translate facts into stories. Anecdotes are great vehicles for evidence. In fact, scientists are now finding that our brains are designed to process information by observing a sequence of casual events. In other words, use your inner nerdiness to captivate your audience by translating your facts into compelling plot points in a story.
If you’re looking for additional resources to help geeks influence business people and advance your IT career, check out this white paper by Paul Glen from Leading Geeks. And a final piece of advice for IT pros navigating the world of business: if at first your don’t succeed, call it version 1.0!