Be Batman Not Superman

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This will probably be as much of a shock to you as it would be to learn that water is wet, but I am a bit of a comic book geek. One of the age old debates in comic books is who would win in a fight: Batman or Superman?

Superman has all sorts of powers. He is practically invulnerable, strong enough to lift a skyscraper, can fly faster than supersonic jets, and can even shoot beams of heat from his eyes. That is not even a complete list of what he can do. Superman is pretty much the ideal superhero.

Batman is just a human being. He is “the world’s greatest detective”, trains to be the best hand-to-hand combatant in the world, and makes up for his lack of powers with a multitude of hi-tech gadgets. Never mind that he is pretty much nuts (the guy dresses up like a bat after all, and that is the least of his problems). In the end though, Batman is just a guy with some serious emotional issues and one heck of a trust fund.

Yet routinely the writers of comic books always have Batman beat Superman in a fight. Why? Probably because Superman beating Batman would be a boring comic book. How? Now that is the part that I want to focus on!

Batman beats Superman through planning. Superman shows up, throws stuff around, uses his fancy powers, and just overwhelms the situation. It looks like Superman is going to win no matter what, and then suddenly drops to the ground powerless. This is the point in the story when the reader learns how Batman planned the whole thing from start to finish. The whole fight was rigged from the beginning, and just when Superman’s victory was a sure thing Batman pulls out the kryptonite.

Batman beats Superman every single time.

If your IT infrastructure has an issue do you rush in and try to play hero? Do you flaunt your “super” knowledge of IT buzzwords and eagerly push buttons to show others how it is done? If so, you are playing Superman and one day you are going to uncover kryptonite. Kryptonite kills Superman, and playing hero kills IT careers.

But if you work hard to develop your skills, if you practice those skills on a regular basis, and if you take the time to plan your next move you are going to be more like Batman. Batman deduces what the right move is by analyzing the evidence. Be like Batman, and do not just jump into a situation with the goal of being a hero, but instead focus on solving the problem through a series of precise moves backed by facts. That is how good IT professionals solve a problem without making it worse.

So be Batman and not Superman when it comes to your IT career. Whether or not you wear a bat suit while you are trouble shooting is up to you.

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