I write about the things that matter to me. All opinions are my own.

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Tuesday, September 3, 2013

When Strategy Is Missing From The Technology Equation

Image via Wikimedia

Tech is supposed to make life easier but too often our strategy amounts to "Ready, Fire, Aim!"

The capacity to think and act strategically is not difficult. But many organizations lack it, because they allow things like:

1) organizational politics
2) conflict aversion
3) anecdotal evidence
4) a false sense of urgency
5) actual disaster

to drive long-term decision-making generally. 

You may not be able to see the result of poor strategy immediately when it comes to technology but eventually it will show up, with symptoms like this:

1) When you ask about the cost of a program the response is an aversion to providing a cost breakdown, but rather defensive or condescending talk and jargon.
2) Users dislike the technology and continually get told things like "you just need better training."
3) Technologies are acquired individually rather than in coordination with one another and the default is to add rather than integrate as many functionalities as possible into as few platforms as possible.
4) Public-facing technologies like social media are used but policies governing their use are nonexistent or ignored.
5) Generally the importance of policy is minimized and metrics are relegated to simple quantitative measures like views or clicks.

At the end of the day, strategy like a map: It is supposed to take us from Point A to Point B with as few stops as possible. If we're driving from New York to Chicago without one, we are bound to end up buying lots of gas and ending up in California.

* All opinions my own.