Technology Won’t Save You

Are you a professional something?

Fill in the blank below:

I’m a professional .Are you waiting for someone to come along and invent the perfect tool to help you get ahead of the game?

If you are a professional and use your brain to make a living, you must learn to operate some tools to aid your critical thinking and powers of getting things done. Technology, by itself, won’t save you or your business. What will save you is your ability to adapt, to manage information, and understand what you are dealing with.

Technology by itself is inert – a database full of data, with nobody to interpret it, is as useful as an ice cube to an Eskimo in a snowstorm. Technology isn’t threatening or scary – we have more to fear from our own expectations than the software that crashes.

A journalist who can’t crop photos or use some basic HTML will not go far in the world of online publishing. A hedge fund manager who won’t use spreadsheets is stuck in the 1950’s, right next to the graphic designer who still cuts and pastes with an X-Acto knife and glue stick.

Here are 9 things that every knowledge professional should know how to do, in order to be a more effective technology operator:

  1. Send an email with proper formatting, and a clear subject line
  2. Crop and resize a digital image
  3. Create an HTML link from scratch
  4. Perform an online search and understand the basics of interpreting the results
  5. Shoot and upload an online video
  6. Use a spreadsheet to do basic math, and sort a list of information
  7. Navigate to a website by directly typing the URL in a navigation bar
  8. Build and publish a simple web page
  9. Get on the wireless network so you can comment on this message.

How much of this do you know how to do?   These are just the basic mechanics used by a digital professional.   And if the 9-year-old who will someday take your job already knows how to do all of this, so can you.