“Technology needs to be solved” to move things forward.

I sit in on a lot of calls where technology is a key focus.  I’m always surprised at the number of people who believe that the word “technology” is magic.  Just by saying “technology” it is as if they expect some wizard to walk in with a tool that does everything for them automatically and without input or effort on their part.

Technology solves nothing.  Think of every piece of technology like a car – it doesn’t really do anything without you as the driver.  But without that car you’d be lost without the ability to go far distances or short distances quickly.  That car enables you to do many, many things but it does not do them for you.  Talk is typically about “People, Process and Technology” but for some reason People and Process are treated differently.

My guess is that most people who didn’t grow up with computers in school never developed a comfort level with technology is a central part of their lives.  Systems and applications need participation and discomfort with the very idea of them is self-defeating.

Part of this problem can be solved by UI/UX.  Making the interactions with systems more natural and intuitive will increase adoption and better treat a system as part of a process as opposed to a standalone solution.  Education is also a big part – educating people that technology is not a magic bullet and that without people using it right nothing will happen.  I will continue to believe that Excel is a better solution than a million dollar ERP system if the people using it are just putting in whatever they want with no controls.

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