Isn’t technology great when it works well? I know what you’re probably thinking when you hear the words technology and works well in the same sentence – “poor response from I.T ‘help’ desk, tons of emails and spam, internet connection issues, non-stop mobile calls and voicemails, trivial updates on Facebook etc. etc. etc.”
The impact from technology can be very frustrating and we can sometimes feel ourselves at its mercy but it doesn’t have to be that way as there is always something we can do to minimise the negative impact on our lives, i.e. we can turn off the sound when new emails arrive (you’re not Pavlov’s dog), unsubscribe from unwanted email lists and Facebook updates, turn off our phones when we’re in meetings or during down time and we can find the most helpful I.T person and be nice to them!
There are also many useful tools that we can use to help us communicate with colleagues and customers, for example, I’m writing this blog using some software from wordpress and this blog is really like a mini-website which is very simple and flexible for me to update and it only costs £60 per year! This is a personal example but in my work as a consultant, especially over the past 2-3 years, I’ve been very fortunate to be involved in helping clients with many projects that involve using new technology such as creating a new portal for pet owners, building a business marketing hub for a supplier to communicate with its thousands of business customers, using online survey tools for collecting information on business practices and customer satisfaction as well as blending an online training software tool with face-to-face workshops.
So what’s the bottom line I hear you ask, well it probably depends on how you feel about technology, are you more of a technophobe or more of a technophile? If you are in the extreme positions of either avoiding technology at one end of the scale and being ‘online’ 24/7 at the other end then you will experience the costs of being there (head in the sand versus head in a spin). I suspect that the vast majority of us are somewhere in the middle and I suggest that we need to keep checking to make sure that technology is working for us rather than we are working for it!