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Posted Thursday, May 13, 2010 6:33 AM
SSC-Enthusiastic

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Spot on!.

My favorite personal experience for my days as a consultant was the 15 year old kid that wanted me to rebuild his mothers operating system in the next two hours before she got home so that she wouldn't find out he had been downloading porn/viruses.

And, expected me to do it for free because "Microsoft pays you to put Windows on the computers you sell."
Post #921185
Posted Thursday, May 13, 2010 6:40 AM
Mr or Mrs. 500

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Great article! I hope this is read and advice taken by those who expect someone to hand them the answer on a silver platter.


Post #921190
Posted Thursday, May 13, 2010 6:41 AM


SSChampion

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D.Oc (5/13/2010)
Steve should ban those words (URGENT or IMMEDIATE HELP or NOW) to appear in the title.

No! those are my favorite threads!

"URGENT" posts are like a train wreck or a car accident for me...i just HAVE to slow down and look, just to see the devastation that exists that someone hopes a miracle one line script of code can fix.....


Lowell

--There is no spoon, and there's no default ORDER BY in sql server either.
Actually, Common Sense is so rare, it should be considered a Superpower. --my son
Post #921191
Posted Thursday, May 13, 2010 6:52 AM


Ten Centuries

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Great article Grant! You are the man, and Yes! I get this all the time too. I have a standing motto when it comes to this kind of thing with people. "I will show you the way by lighting up your path for you, but you are the one that has to ultimately walk through the woods, not me." Many times, they do. But there have been some that have just shook their head and stormed off. Those people, generally don't come back. They go find someone else to do their work for them.

"Technology is a weird thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ..."
Post #921207
Posted Thursday, May 13, 2010 7:06 AM


SSCarpal Tunnel

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Good stuff - too bad it won't actually be read by any of those who might need it.

Best,

Kevin G. Boles
SQL Server Consultant
SQL MVP 2007-2012
TheSQLGuru at GMail
Post #921222
Posted Thursday, May 13, 2010 7:18 AM
Ten Centuries

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The underlying issue is psychological and is similar to counselling people. Basically by responding to the problem you are, in the mind of the requester, taking ownership of the problem. So if your solution does not work perfectly or is only a partial solution, the requester then gets agrieved at your failure and demands you provide a solution that does work.

If you are going to answer then you probably have to give some alternative approaches and stress that it is their problem and they have to think it through to get the most appropriate solution.
Post #921239
Posted Thursday, May 13, 2010 8:18 AM
SSCrazy

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While I agree with everything you've said, I wonder if perhaps you're forgetting how it is to be one of the little guys.

I'm in the fortunate position where I can mentor others, but still need help occasionally with the really complicated stuff. I can't speak for anyone else, but I suspect that many do what I do. Spend hours, days, or even weeks, trying to solve a problem. When all else fails, I go to a forum to get other opinions. The forums are not the be-all and end-all, they're a last resort. Many times I don't even get a response. That could be the reason for caps; at least it might conjure up some interest. Then some of the answers I get are so completely irrelevant and obviously wrong that I wonder if the 'expert' even read the question. But rarely I get one, the needle in the haystack, that's worth wading through all the crud for.

I certainly don't expect anyone to do my job for me. I've seen posts where that's clearly what the requestor is looking for, but they're usually few and far between. And if I happen to be the 'expert' on those occasions, that's when I just stop answering the questions. If you spoon-feed someone, they'll keep coming back for more.

When I post a question, I'm looking for a collaborator, not a babysitter. But don't waste my time either, by not reading past the first line of the question.


Simone
Post #921295
Posted Thursday, May 13, 2010 8:19 AM
Right there with Babe

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I'm sure that, as some point on these forums, I've asked a question and indicated that I needed an answer in a hurry. I think that, when I read the answer given, I always thank the person answering. But just to re-iterate, I thank everyone on SQL Server Central who has ever answered any of my questions, for your help and input.


Kindest Regards,

Rod
Connect with me on LinkedIn.
Post #921297
Posted Thursday, May 13, 2010 8:42 AM
SSC-Enthusiastic

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sburcombe (5/13/2010)
The forums are not the be-all and end-all, they're a last resort. ... When I post a question, I'm looking for a collaborator, not a babysitter. But don't waste my time either, by not reading past the first line of the question.


RE: First quoted sentence. For you, me, and some others this is true, however for many people it is false. However, you can usually tell by the content of the question whether someone is approaching the forum as a first or last resort.


As for the last quoted part, I agree. I can't count the number of times someone has fired back a "Boy you sure are dumb if you haven't done "X,Y,Z" already" without even reading far enough to see that I'ld already tried "X, Y, and Z" as well as "AA through AZ".

It does help to occasionally be pointed to a "How to post questions in this forum" FAQ. Someone posted an excellent article on this a couple of weeks back that really helped me understand the very basic issue of how to ask for help in a way that encourages responses.
Post #921334
Posted Thursday, May 13, 2010 8:43 AM


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Grant's out today (my bad scheduling), but thanks for the responses.

I think that some of the experts do forget that it's tough at times, but all caps don't necessarily help. Pushing on volunteers for help isn't the solution. If you're at the end of your rope, you should be calling someone and paying for help. Call MS, call Microsoft Consulting, or a local consulting company. Pressure on those of us doing this for free doesn't help.

There are times when experts don't have the answer you need. We might not be any smarter about the situation than you are and might suggest things that seem silly. Maybe they are, maybe we're reaching for a solution when we're not sure, but we're trying. Keep that in mind.

If it's not good enough, break out the checkbook.







Follow me on Twitter: @way0utwest

Forum Etiquette: How to post data/code on a forum to get the best help
Post #921335
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