Good people as technology assets. For the past few months I’ve been talking about technological issues as they relate to specific products or mindsets. I’d like to take a moment to shine some light on the biggest resource we may have to tackle tough technological problems. It’s the people we meet every day. The people we work with, and the bonds and relationships we make. How many times have you found yourself incredibly frustrated trying to find an answer to a technological problem? Of course. there is always the Internet, and thanks to Google, most answers are now at our fingertips. With a little ingenuity, you can easily use the Internet to research your idea or problem and to find potential answers or information.
As an adjunct faculty member at Ringling College of Art and Design, I have had the opportunity to meet some of the most kind, generous and hard-working students I’ve ever known. They have all far exceeded my expectations. This new wave of future leaders and artists – digital “natives” – have grown up with technology and understand better than most of us its current and potential impact on our lives and in our work.
Like most of us, they encounter a lot of the same problems using technology. However, because they’ve been surrounded with technology since birth, they are incredibly adept at finding answers to their issues relatively quickly by using online resources.
On the flip side, you may want to seek out assistance from people with special subject matter expertise. For example, pinpoint people in your office or in your life who have a specific skill set on a subject or technology issue and seek them out for their advice. The accountant who has research varies online billing software, the project manager who is well-versed in the best ways to work with virtual teams. Or, the administrative assistant who is responsible for online conferencing software. Take advantage of their perspectives on how they improved processes using technology. Instead of starting from ground zero, you may just find they have deep problem-experience in just the area you need help.
For all its advances, one thing this technological era has severely affected is our ability to be human-centered and to enhance our relationships. Technology is a great tool, but our willingness to simply take a minute to reach out and talk to our colleagues might be the best way to solve our technology issues.
Most technological issues or issues in general can easily be addressed and remedied. And finding those human assets in your life to help you is invaluable.