I'm the most senior programmer at a company that works in the earth sciences. There are a handful of us (25%) that have backgrounds in computer science who work hard to support the rest of the company (the other 75%).
My problem is that programmers in the company are not respected as peers with a different and complementary education and skill set. Instead we seem to be treated like "junior scientists" rather than peers. A while back, my manager suggested that a junior scientist in the company apply for one of our senior developer positions and I almost burst out laughing, because the prospect was so ridiculous. Later, I almost cried, because it demonstrated how little he understood of what we do.
I frequently struggle with the fact that the scientists in the company (including senior management), act as though they know what we do. Some of them may have taken programming 101, or have hacked on someone else's code in graduate school. From this "experience" they think that this gives them substantial insight into what we do as professionals with CS graduate degrees and ten years of experience.
What are some approaches to gaining corporate respect for our profession and politely conferring the fact that there is much more to our jobs than the other 75% of our company really understand? Should I just "join the club"? Is this the case in every company?