It's becoming increasingly common that we find opportunities to work remotely - software has allowed sharing and real-time updating of files, our communication is better than ever as live chat, conference calls and screen-sharing are commonplace. We've also seen a rapid increase in more alternative styles of remote working as social media influencers and travelling remote worker hubs such as Digital Nomad World continue to attract those looking for a change in the daily grind - but with the increase in remote working comes other challenges too - self-reliance in tech has become increasingly difficult as a vast collection of software and hardware behaves differently and may have errors that are unique, but learning to troubleshoot and deal with these errors may be much simpler than you think.
- It's easier than you think - The first step to learning tech self-reliance is to understand that for the majority of the issues you're likely to encounter, the fix is going to be much easier than you think. For daily issues, you don't know to be a computer whizz to solve an issue - if you forget a password, you're not going to hack your way in when you can simply reset the password for example. Going through a basic checklist for common issues such as a simple restart may save a lot of time and pain down the line.
- It's not about memory - It happens all the time - you call the IT guy to fix something, he clicks a couple of buttons and the problem is solved, and many will exclaim asking how it's possible they remember so much. The hidden truth is that they don't remember - as with the first point, many issues will be much simpler to fix by simple troubleshooting such as a restart, but for other issues, it's about searching and not remembering. Google is a very powerful tool - learning how to search for your issue and filtering out the type of responses you need will be far more useful to you than trying to remember how to fix every little issue - and that's the important distinction, it's about understanding how to search correctly and not necessarily what you search.
- A basic understanding goes a long way - Perhaps you open up your laptop or computer and are baffled by the wires and components inside not really understanding what anything is for - but the companies who design these machines have that in mind and that's why for the most part everything is put together in a very easy way. Things now typically only plug in one way, cable headers are correctly labelled and there's little room for error - like a very simple jigsaw puzzle. Familiarize yourself with what's inside your machine, what the component does at a basic level, and if something goes wrong, it's easier to troubleshoot - is your screen not displaying but the power light is on? Safe to assume it's a display issue, for example.
Paying for repairs or waiting for a tech guy to get to you when working remotely could put you out of daily work for a couple of days - if you rely on that day to day then it could be catastrophic for you. As mentioned, modern issues are typically a very simple fix - learn the basics and it could save a big headache down the road.