I have been working with computers for almost 40 years but have worked specifically as a network engineer for almost 23 years. During that time, I have been privileged to work with a variety of organizations, both large and small and everything in-between. I have been employed by the largest discount retailer in the US as well as the largest networking manufacturer in the world. I have done work with the largest healthcare organization in the world, but I have also done work with small organizations from banks and small-scale manufacturers to the local restaurant. Most of my time in IT has been spent in what I call “customer world” as opposed to the partner/provider space. As a result, I can often take a unique perspective on what is important to the customer.
Am I an expert? That is not really for me to say. I have been privileged to work with a variety of systems and tackle a plethora of challenges in my many years, but there is a lot I don’t know and a lot I haven’t been exposed to. And it goes without saying that it is constantly changing. What I can say is that I do what I do with excellence. I do it to the very best of my ability without exception regardless of customer or situation. I will not lead a customer down a path I would not go down myself. I treat my customers’ networks as though they were my own and do everything within my power to ensure their availability, reliability, and security.
So, for me, whether I am an expert is not really the most important thing. I’ve met a lot of guys I would consider experts in their field that I would not subject any of my customers to. Yes, I have the certifications and the knowledge and the experience but those are not worth jack if you don’t care about the customer and their business. I make what is important to the customer important to me. If there is anything that would distinguish me from other engineers in the partner/provider space it would be my concern for the customer’s needs.