Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Technology Adoption - a look under the hood

I want to thank Deborah Fishman of Present Tense Magzine for her recent article in eJewishphilanthropy sharing honestly, openly and clearly the technology adoption process experienced when the Present Tense Magazine staff adopted Googlewave. I am sure that many in the audience recognize this process — the benefits and new possibilities — along side the steep learning curve and the challenge of recreating our daily work habits.

We are likely to see and experience this exact same process again and again in the years to come. Lisa Colton of Darim Online mentioned in a recent Boston talk that experts estimate we are 10 years into the 50 year revolution emerging from the radical changes in technology.

How will we endure? Here are a few of my thoughts:
a) let's be realistic, its hard work getting a workforce up to speed on a new technology – make sure we calculate training, support and time into the plan before we get wowed by the next ‘technology superfix.’

b) let's build the capacity of our workforce for ongoing learning and support. Break down silos, form learning communities, support the informal conversations through which professionals become more competant on a daily basis

c)let's begin thinking about the role of a technology steward – someone whose job is not just to select a technology solution but to take into account the realistic learning needs of users and help those users master the technology so they can realize the potential gains the technology holds.

For more information on technology stewardship see the book Digital Habitats and accompanying blog or the Tech Stew blog by Caren Levine.

Naava Frank

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