I haven’t had an “epiphany” moment in a couple of weeks, which surprises me because for the most part, I have numerous ones per day! Working for a company that specializes in audiovisual and collaborative technology gives me the figurative “ah ha” constantly! Perhaps I’ve been stagnated because I’m tired or shoot, perhaps I have disruption fatigue, meaning I’ve reached a point of being overwhelmed by all the epiphany moments. Who knows…but I’ve been silent.
Today, however, I read a blog published by SMART Technologies that has me inspired to throw a few words down for your reading enjoyment. “How Will You Use Technology as a Superpower?” has some great stuff in it and I suggest you take a moment and read it.
SMART’s post suggests that educators ask themselves questions to get to the “root” of a potential investment in technology. Using Simon Sinek’s What, How and Why concept, Ms Simon, asks,
“What is the purpose of these new tools?”
“How are they going to affect my students’ learning?”
“Why should I buy them?”
Ms. Simon’s questions pair nicely with what I ask my kids when they get hyped up about something new in the tech world.
WHY do you want it?
WHAT makes it different from what you already have?
WHAT difference will it make in the long run?
WILL you actually use it?
These questions work nicely for business as well. I am positive that, similar to Ms. Simon’s thought about educators, managers and business owners also get overwhelmed and distracted by the latest “shiny new things.”
Therefore, perhaps managers and business owners should mindfully consider the same questions I ask my kids:
WHY do you want it?
- Is the new tech gadget/tool, component or software going to solve a problem?
- Is it going to improve a work product?
- Is it going to make things easier or more efficient?
- Is it going to shorten cycle or wait times?
- Is it going to add value to the workforce, the customers or key stakeholders?
If the answer to these or similar questions is “no,” I submit you don’t need it.
WHAT makes the new thing different from what you already have?
- Is it replacing something that is old, failing or no longer supported?
- Is it more intuitive or easier to use than what you currently have?
- Is it less expensive to maintain and/or keep active than what you are currently using?
- Is it more compatible with other applications and/or products that are used often?
If the answer to these or similar questions is “no,” I propose you don’t need it.
WHAT difference will the new thing make in the long run?
- Will it improve your key measurements of success?
- Will it better prepare you for success?
If the answer to these or similar questions is “no,” I suggest you don’t need it.
WILL you actually use the new thing?
- Has your workforce or customers asked for it?
- Are your workforce and customers ready for it or do they have the capacity and willingness to adopt it?
- Are your IT and/or Managers ready to support it?
If the answer to these and similar questions is “no” or “maybe,” I worry you are not ready to make the investment in it.
I work for a company that designs, sells, installs and services audiovisual and collaborative technology…did I just talk you out of investing in such things?
Here’s the deal: if you answered yes to any of the questions above, you are ready for the new thing, and you should give us a call!