IT Job Titles Gone Wild
by Walter V. Koenning, for reallylinux.com HUMOR MIXED WITH REALITY section.
I was in a meeting at my company where we did the usual introductory hand shake followed by a
frenzied tossing of business cards on to the table for exchange.
As everyone was passing cards around, some started staring at me wondering why I wasn't partaking of this feast of glossy
credentials. "I don't have an updated card," I responded sheepishly, not admitting that I had no idea what my title was.
Others began reading the key line on each card they gathered.
The key line of course is not the name but the title.
One gentleman personally handed me his card with a wide grin on his face. I read the title: "technology evangelist."
To those clever folks who plan to print this on their own cards, let me give a small tip. That term "evangelist" is so
overused it is beyond cliché. Several years ago it was quite unique and memorable,
but today it is more like a piece of fruit forgotten in the back seat of the car. Then there is the usual chatter among the
people who all have the same title, such as Chief Technology Officer. Just how many CTOs are there in this world anyway?
As I pondered this and other questions during the rather mundane meeting, it suddenly dawned on me. What if business cards
had titles that were more transparent, and less haughty? What if they were declaratives of truth. What if they included something
like a synopsis of the person's actual role?
The Chief Technology Officer could instead be "High Paid Manager Who Hasn't Touched Code or a Server in Years." There
would be the sales folks, some who would have cards that read: "Ask me and I will get a technologist to answer" or "quotas,
quotas, please help me reach my quotas!"
You would meet guys during technology summits and they would hand over cards like "chief obfuscator" and "supercilious architect."
There would be the typical engineer, sitting in one corner away from the table and his card would read, "Go-to guy on everything
including coffee filter replacement." Beside him would be that new kid just in from college with a card that includes: "My Resume is Baloney but give me a chance."
For once in our lives we could forgo all of those self-aggrandizing titles and meet people with cards that say it like we know it already: "I don't know diddly without my
tech staff" and "senior ignoramus."
Graphic artists could have titles like "Designing the impossible" -- while software developers would have titles like "code crammer"
and "responsible for all project short comings." Of course, there would be the odd support staff member with a title on his card
that reads "flagellation toy" and the team member beside him who has a card with the title "assistant flagellation toy." In fact,
there could be someone in the same meeting with the title: "Mr. Flagellator."
Finally, there would of course be the Linux geeks. They would include a little TUX logo on the bottom of their card and have
titles like "emporer penguin" or "egg man" and perhaps more likely "Windows, Windows, I Don't Need No Stinkin' Windows."
Some other titles to consider:
Ahh, that would be the day. Now I better get back to work before my card reads: "Going to the poor house."
- Chairman of the Board -- Significance through Stock
- Chief Executive Officer -- Meeting Master or Chief Shmoozer
- Chief Financial Officer -- Using Technology to Fool the IRS
- Chief Technology Officer -- I Was Once a Techy, Believe Me!
- Technical Manager -- Deficient Code Writer
- Architect -- Self Declared Demi-god
- Senior Developer -- Waiting for the Architect to Leave or Die
- Software Engineer -- Coding the Damn Blue Sky Requirements Again
- Support Engineer -- Bending over, way over, to serve you
- Help Desk Technician -- On the Phone Watching Life Pass By
- PC Technician -- Fixing Windows so it actually works
- Marketing Rep -- Catered luncheon specialist
- Sales Rep -- Selling Air for the third straight year
- Janitor -- Former CEO of the acquired company
This brief HUMOR piece should not be construed as factual information, and only contains the jokes and personal experiences of the author at the time of publication. You take this article seriously at your own risk. Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds. IBM, PC-DOS, and OS/2 are the registered trademarks or trademarks of International Business Machines. Microsoft, Microsoft Service Agreement, Microsoft Windows are trademarks or registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation both in the United States and Internationally. All other trademarks or registered trademarks in this opinion piece belong to their respective owners.