Spoiler alert: They’re always organizational.
Salesforce CRM. Amazon Web Services. Oracle. Google Analytics.
I’m guessing you’ve heard of at least one of the technologies or companies mentioned above. Probably all of them. You might even use or have used them. Think for a minute why these tools work so well in your organization—or don’t. Is it because of a great training structure used to understand the tool or lack of a learning environment? Is it how your team communicates within the tool or stays siloed and passive? Or maybe it’s the process and workflows you’ve laid out that are a part of your overall strategy and goals (if you have a clear strategy and goals)?
As you answer any of these questions, one thing is constant and crucial: Technology works well because the people within the organization work well together. The continued growth of AI, IoT, and many other tech areas are nothing without human interaction. Software or device may measure, track and analyze performance, but it takes organizational input to define what needs to be measured, tracked and analyzed.
So what’s needed from an organization and its people to overcome challenges when working with technology?
Security & Safety
I don’t mean IT security or physical safety; I’m talking more about trust and respect. People want to know they won’t be disadvantaged if they share an idea, “stupid” question, frustration, or any other type of thought. For example: If one person on a team disagrees with the five others, they should state why they disagree without colleagues becoming angry or viewing them negatively. If everyone has this sense of safety and security, ideas are freely shared to solve challenges.
If you’re surprised this is listed, I encourage you to reflect on how you and your colleagues communicate. I don’t say this lightly or judgmentally. It isn’t that communication volume needs to increase (although that’s a good starting point). Defining why and how an organization communicates is first. If the purpose of Monday’s 15-minute meeting is for everyone to state their main tasks and projects for the week, then it needs to be just that—and not complaining or diving into micro-issues with one other person on the team.
Clear goals & direction
That flows nicely into the last part of communication. We often take it for granted that we all just know what we should be working toward and why. Usually, the direction and goals will come from the manager or leader. Still, everyone should be encouraged to speak up if they don’t understand how a specific project or task helps accomplish the defined goal. By keeping in mind the importance of building a secure and safe environment, no one feels hesitant to hold everyone accountable.These are not the only needs for an organization to overcome challenges between people and technology, but they’re crucial for technology to work.
Binary Noggin works to do this internally as an organization and with our clients. Are we perfect? No. But it’s incredible how we all grow in these organizational needs when we’re aware of them. The biggest thing that happens when we implement the three organizational needs for our clients is TRUST. They trust we have their best interest and want them to succeed. They trust that our goal is to mentor, solve problems, and work together to have a sustainable product moving forward. We help clients use technology at a higher level, but we know it only happens through human-to-human relationships.
Matt Honeycutt is a business development partner with Binary Noggin. Matt’s full-time gig is as an Admissions Director for Graduate Business Programs in the Kansas City area, but his experience and energy lie within understanding a person or company’s needs and finding the right tools and solutions to make them successful. He’s happy to talk about Binary Noggin’s approach to software development and consulting, even if it means finding them a better fit somewhere else.
Founded in 2007, Binary Noggin is a team of software engineers and architects who serve as a trusted extension of your team, helping your company succeed through collaboration. We forge customizable solutions using Agile methodologies and our mastery of Elixir, Ruby, and other open-source technologies. Share your ideas with us on Facebook and Twitter.