During this COVID crisis it has been very exciting to see individuals and business owners start adapting what people such as myself have been using for years. Things such as digital meeting tools, productivity programs such as Airtable or Trello, and seeing bigger businesses adopt all in one tools such as the ones offered by Microsoft.
My work and my passion is technology, and how we can adopt it into our everyday lives. It makes communication, life, and work much easier.
Unless, of course, you use too much of it.
Sometimes, The Abyss Stares Back
Ever since I was little, I was always tinkering with something. Once computers became commonplace I spent a lot of my time figuring them out. It wasn’t long before I found that I knew and understood computers more than most.
My work evolved into helping businesses adopt and use technology, and I’ve seen it bite back pretty hard. In some cases, the worst thing to happen to the businesses is that they actually successfully adopted the new technology.
Given this, I have some tips based on 10+ years of experience working with businesses on choosing the right technologies and strategies to adopt them.
Tip #1: Simply ask: “Does This Make Sense?”
Under no circumstances should technology be adopted unless it has a measurable, obvious benefit to adopting it.
A classic example is Social Media.
Everybody hops on board, does it for a little while, until it’s too much of a hassle to maintain. The profiles then get ignored. This ultimately sends out a bad message to anyone researching your business. ( Even I’ve fallen for this )
On the other hand, if you took a long, hard look and asked “does this make sense?” you’re forced to take a moment and, if needed, make it make sense.
Does it make sense to start something you’re not going to support on a regular basis? Of course not.
Does it make sense to start something that you will use to keep your customers together and allow you to reach out to them easily and affordably? Definitely.
If you can’t come up with a viable, measurable, and ultimately strong return for your investment of time and money into the investment, either don’t invest or find something smaller to match what you can invest.
Tip #2: Technology Does Not Equal Trends
This is kind of a rewrite of #1, but I need to speak this loud and clear:
Just because everyone else is benefiting from a technology, it does not mean you magically will without some effort.
It’s really easy to get caught up in trending technologies, and this can be used to your advantage. However, always expect that adopting a new technology requires some effort on top of the price you’ve paid for it.
Ask yourself the question in tip #1 if a trending technology is being pushed on you.
Tip #3: Use Social Confirmation to Help Adopt A New Technology
So, you’ve followed tip #1, and the technology means complete sense. You just need to get your people on board.
The key is to onboard your team little by little. First present the technology and see where you get resistance. Rank your team from most resistant to the new technology to the least resistant.
Take the people that are least resistant and onboard them with the new technology. This is important because there will inevitably be hiccups with onboarding the new technology. This first group will be most open to adapting the new technology and will work with you to make it work.
The next group is your middle of the range. They may show some resistance to the new technology, but all you have to do is tell them “person X and Y have been using it for X weeks, and it works great! Let’s get started…” and you ease them in. After a week or two they should be on board and working with your existing people that are onboard.
After that comes your most resistant people. When they get all humbug point to your team and say “everyone else is using it, you have to too. It’s not that hard, we’ll work together to help you get on board”. At this point, you and your team can work together to get the more resistant people on board.
That does it for our three tips. If this has been useful to you feel free to catch me on social media or just let me know if you have any ideas.
Devon Godfrey is the founder of FreydomSites.com, and has been developing websites for 10 years. He’s a very passionate developer, networker, and DnD player.