Experienced business owners and executives can tell you that technology really moves at two speeds. The first involves the rate of change associated with new products, processes, and systems. In that sense, it can feel like there are breakthroughs happening so fast that they’re nearly impossible to keep up with.
The second speed of technology has to do with the rate at which employees adopt these systems and ideas. This is where things can move a lot slower. In some cases, it may seem like your team members (and even some of your most important leaders) are far behind the curve.
This is a concern we hear about and deal with all the time. Why is it employees don’t pick up new technology as fast as employers might like? Let’s look at a few important reasons, along with their solutions…
Lack of Training on New Equipment and Software
Often, new apps and hardware devices are marketed as being easy to pick up, incredibly intuitive, or “so simple anyone can use them.” However, employees – and especially those who may be used to following different procedures for years – may not feel the same.
When your employees know the basics of a new tool they are more apt to experiment, find answers, and make the solution a part of their daily workday. That’s why just a little bit of training on a system or interface can make a huge difference.
Little Enthusiasm for Different Processes or Solutions
It’s one thing to take on a new piece of technology because it’s exciting or can remove a key frustration. It’s another thing to do so because management has instructed you to take time out of your busy week to learn a different way to finish a task that’s been handled without too much trouble in the past. In fact, that can feel a bit like busy work.
Let your employees know why it is you are implementing a new system. Better yet, give them incentives to master it quickly so they’ll make an effort to get up to speed quickly.
Too Many Changes in a Short Period of Time
We have already of the problems associated with new technology: change just keeps coming quickly. It can be hard for your team to be enthusiastic about picking up a new skill if they’ve had to master several of them and a short period of time. And, they won’t be that motivated to learn if the company is always changing directions.
You shouldn’t put off important upgrades or process improvements that need to be made, of course, but you can ensure you have a long term strategy in place that minimizes the need for technology turnover. In other words, think carefully about what you want your team to do. Then give them access to tools you think they can keep using for years to come.
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