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Choosing the right professional

I’m writing this blog post from my bed, you may think that’s a little too much information there is a good reason for telling you this as it provided the inspiration for this post. I hadn’t been feeling particularly well at the tail end of last week but pushed on (as you do) as there were things that needed to be done. Come the weekend I had to relent and haul myself off to seek medical advice. In the UK local GP surgeries are not open at weekends so I had to go to something called a “walk-in centre” where I was made to wait outside as I had arrived 10 minutes before it was officially open. That’s right in the UK you are expected to be ill at times convenient to the NHS! I should point out that I think the NHS is a wonderful institution and admire the people who work for it, without them the country would be in a sad state of affairs indeed.

However, after seeing the initial triage nurse I waited to see somebody else for further assessment who I explained my symptoms and concerns to and I was told that I had a viral infection and should go home and rest up and take paracetamol. Come Monday things were much worse and I made an appointment at my local surgery, within 5 minutes I was diagnosed with a chest infection and prescribed anti-biotics for the infection. Not only was this the right diagnosis the whole experience was a lot nicer too. My concerns had been listened too, having had a bad chest infection a few years back I knew what the signs were and what my body was telling me yet the first “professional” chose to ignore me, was quite curt and subsequently made the wrong diagnosis.

This post wasn’t designed just to get something off my chest (nice pun eh) it was designed to make you evaluate the service that you provide as an individual to your clients be they internal or external. Who would you rather be perceived as Professional #1 or Professional #2? To succeed in Information Technology (or Information Services if you prefer) it is no longer just down to your technical skills (although this obviously helps), you must also be able to communicate clearly and effectively with every audience that you interact with. I wrote a post on the same topic last year that you may find useful – Bridging the gap – Good communication is key 

I urge you all to take stock of who you are, how you represent yourself and outline the steps you need to take to become who you deserve to be. Take that step now and become the right professional.

Richard Douglas

Richard Douglas is a SQL Server Professional working in the UK where he recently worked as a DBA in women's clothing, not literally he hastens to add! He is certified in SQL Server 2008, runs the Maidenhead SQL Server User Group Pass Chapter and is on the organising committee for SQL Relay. In his spare time plays the trumpet in local symphony orchestras.

His online presence includes:


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