Did you take part in our ‘IT OMG’ competition this week in our Facebook community group? We challenged all of our MSPs to think about their best OMG story from working with customers over the years, and share it with the rest of the group. The winners would get a $250 Amazon gift card, plus the real prize, TWO super-cool Atera t-shirts to wear with pride!
Here’s a look at our top 5 stories, including the winning two entries, one chosen by you, via Facebook reaction buttons, and one chosen by the Atera team.
5. It’s Official, Not Everyone Understands Routers
Colton Sharon shared with us his amazing story of when he was working as a sysadmin for a large corporation.
“We had a government client and got to service some pretty high up ranks. So, we got a call in from a commander who needed help with something outside of normal requirements.”
This commander let Colton’s team know that his internet seemed to stop working whenever he does any “Official” business, and asked for their help. He mentioned a special feature that he uses, specifically for “official” work, and Colton got sent on-site to see exactly what he meant by this. “It seemed every time he put his modem/router into the “Official,” [also known as] OFF position, it never seemed to work.”
All’s well that ends well, after explaining that OFF wasn’t short for OFFicial, and having a pretty good laugh, everything worked out!
4. RATS all folks!
We loved Woodrow Cannon’s story, showing that we all have to think a little bit outside the box when we’re troubleshooting, and offering clients our expert advice! Woodrow had a remote client who was experiencing intermittent drops on their server, not even lasting long enough to cause them much alarm. After being sent a new switch, the problem didn’t go away. When they lost communication with the server entirely, despite it still showing up on the monitor, Woodrow was called out to see if he could work out what was happening.
“The Ethernet cable to the server showed damage I’ d never seen before. RATS! Apparently, the restaurant next door had a rat problem and their extermination efforts had run the rats next door, and they were now gnawing on the clients’ ethernet cables. Ugh.”
Us MSPs are known for thinking on our feet and coming up with fast solutions to even unforeseen issues. We love how Woodrow responded! – “I recommended a low voltage cabling company and an exterminator.”
3. You Have the Power – Except When You Don’t
Annie Zuniga was working for a well-known ISP, fielding customer calls from many angry people without service. One customer phoned up crying and claimed that “nothing was working”, despite everything appearing hunky-dory on-screen from Annie’s console. After running through multiple troubleshooting ideas, from attempting to connect a new device, running an ethernet cable from the modem, restarting and reprovisioning the modem…. Still nothing.
Eventually, Annie asked the customer a simple question.
Annie: “What do you see on your screen?”
Customer: “Nothing. It’s blank.”
Annie. “Is the power on?”
Annie: “Are you sure?”
Customer: “Normally, I just open my laptop and it turns on.”
Annie: “Can you push the power button to turn it back on?”
Customer: “Where is that?”
-cue Annie describing the location of the power button, at the top right of the device.-
Customer: “I’m pushing it but nothing’s happening” -customer recommences crying-
Annie: “Now hold the power button down for 10 seconds…”
Needless to say, this simple power-up solved the customer’s “IT problem”, and Annie was able to be the hero of the hour!
2. Winner #1: Creative Problems Call for Creative Solutions
The Atera team chose our winning entry, which came from Piero Oliviero, who was working in Imola, a small town near Bologna, back in 1997. His small IT business was visited by a retiree, who wanted internet access. One small problem, he didn’t have a modem. Luckily, he had brought a solution with him.
Holding out a 3.5-inch floppy disk, he explained the issue. “I want Internet, but I haven’t got any modem,” he told Piero. “Could you please put it on this floppy?”
1. Winner #2: Get Over Here and Help Me… And Step On It!
Last but not least, with the most laugh and like reactions, Ernest Dunhin is the winner of the popular vote! His IT OMG story was a cracker! Ernest received a call that a customer’s foot pedal was not working, and as a junior sysadmin, he was sent out to fix the problem.
“So, I prepare myself it is most likely a dictation pedal. I make my way to the user, and approaching the user’s desk I am trying to see which model it is, but I do not see a foot pedal at all. I ask the user “where is the foot pedal?” and she points down to the floor… to a computer mouse.”
We probably wouldn’t have been able to stop ourselves from laughing, but Ernest is a better guy than we are, and felt sorry for her!
“This poor 50+ user has been using her mouse with her right foot for almost three months. The ball was all clogged up with fibers from the floor. I cleaned it and showed the user the proper way of using it… and it was the talk of the floor that week!”
We’re not surprised to hear it!
Thanks for Taking Part… Until Next Time!
Thanks to so many of you for taking part in our challenge, we had a blast! If you want to check out all the other entries, or you’re not yet part of the Atera Users Official Community, here’s how to join!