It happened.

So, I can finally tell you. I got promoted.

I am moving off of the front lines, at my company, into more of a management role. I'm shifting from the badly-named tier 1 team (tier 1 at this company is FAR more than what you'd think of as "tier 1" support, probably T2 or T3 anywhere else) to a Training and Documentation Coordinator.

The question was pretty simple: how did one person in Alabama become a ticket-smashing machine while maintaining clear communication and genuine customer focus?

The follow-up question is even simpler: and how do we teach this intangible?

I have, in essence, a mission that is as singular as it is far-reaching: figure out what made me awesome at my job, even though I was never the most gifted coder or diagnostician, and transmit culture, values, and troubleshooting skills to every new employee that comes after me.

Care, feed, and garden my team.

I was already doing it, promotion or no, but having it made my official focus is pretty awesome. I actually did something crazy in mid-2012: I turned down a promotion because it was the obvious step but not the right one. I chose to hold out, and wait for this position; I knew it would come, eventually, because it was too critical not to, and I knew it was where I belonged.

Not bad, 2013, not bad. Nice opening move there.

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Pfeh, I know what (tangible) skills those are :)

1) You aren't afraid to learn from anyone. You ask for help when you need it - after you've done your best on your own. When someone shows you a better way, you seize it - you are not 

2) You are tenacious. You don't walk away from a problem just because you're pissed at it and it doesn't make any fraking sense.

3)  You communicate. Knowing that you have to communicate to your customer, even if all you can say is "I have no idea WTF is going on." and being able to suck that up and not take the response personally is hard, but you can do it.

crap, I had one more.


Now, the one that's harder to teach, and that you CLEARLY have in spades - what makes a really good support person vs someone that's just able to do the job:

You can look at a bunch of disparate things that don't seem related, and pull the correct answer out of what seems like your ass. Except it's not - your brain figured it out without telling you ;)  

Congratulations!  You've earned the stripes.  And kudos for knowing which path to take; it's so important to know exactly where your skills will do the most good.

Hooray for you, from another Tier 1+ gal!