Myths Uncovered About IT Specialists
You’ve probably heard it a thousand times by now: “If you’re looking into a new or alternative career path, you should consider information technology. Computers are the future. They are the present.”
You hear this, but then you think that to be an IT person, you have to be “that” kind of person. You know what that means. The IT guy is portrayed as almost the same techie persona in any movie or show with a nerdy character. He loves sci-fi, was born with an extensive knowledge of circuitry, and might actually be a computer himself.
There is good news, though, if you do want to explore a future in IT. The legend of the nerdy tech wizard that’s been passed along for generations (well, maybe just this generation), is largely a fabrication. Sure, there are plenty of people out there who fit the description, but there are even more people working in the IT field who don’t fit the stereotype. So, if you don’t consider yourself the traditional “tech geek,” that means a future in IT can be for you. Don’t believe it? Let’s just take a look at a few of the myths of the techie.
Myth #1: Keep him locked far away until you need him
First of all, the IT specialist is not a dragon. He might love Dungeons and Dragons (though probably doesn’t), but he need not be kept away from coworkers and clients because IT people are inherently shy and socially awkward.
IT is growing at such a pace that the industry has far surpassed the capacity of the “nerd population.” In all seriousness, jobs in tech fields are growing, not only in numbers, but also in the diversity of people seeking out these careers. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects 12 percent job growth in IT through 2024, while other jobs are projected to grow at 7 percent.* And since so many jobs and businesses now involve IT, perfectly well-adjusted people everywhere are filling these positions.
Myth #2: The Man
Another techie myth also says that an IT specialist needs to be “The Man.” Not only does the guy know everything about computers and every possible form of higher technology known to man, but he is also a . . . he. The notion that information technology specialists are always men is just that—a myth. The industry is growing at an enormous rate for women, too. Just take a look at the “I look like an engineer” campaign that began in 2015. Women everywhere spoke up about the fact that high tech jobs are just as much for women as for men and proved it by posting their tech credentials.
Myth #3: The Man, Part II
While we’re on the topic of “The Man,” let’s address the other half of the myth. Just because an IT person works with computers or software does not mean that he or she knows everything about every bit of technology. The fact is they were trained to do what they do. Sure, some people have a strong interest in computers and have worked and played with them for much of their lives. But for most IT professionals, they learned their trade in school and advanced their skills on the job. It’s just like any skill. You have to learn it, and then work at it to get better. See, it’s all much simpler than it seems.
Myth #4: The Passion of the Techie
The final myth to take on involves what IT professionals do when they clock out. Legend has it, they spend every evening watching comic book movies while getting their homemade Star Wars costumes ready for the next convention. In truth, you can have a career in IT and skip the next Comic Con. You are more than welcome to attend, and even do so in costume, but it’s not part of the job description. There are plenty of sports fans and fine art lovers in the IT world, too.
There is room for anyone in the field, including you. Interested in exploring a career in IT? Take a look at the many options out there to get started.