We live in an exciting time for technology.
There is a great deal of technology available that will make your company
more profitable or more efficient. You may even have specific people
allocated to identifying and evaluating new technologies that may be
beneficial to your company. Depending on your business model, you may be
inundated with vendors who promise that adopting their technology will
save you money, increase productivity, and make upper management giddy.
The million dollar question is when is it time to adopt emerging
In order to answer this question properly, you have to take a look at
your company culture. It’s defined as the unique personality of your
employees within your company, and it’s based strongly on the position
that management and upper management take toward change.
For example, is your company culture innovative/visionary, early adopter,
average adopter, or conservative? Recognizing where you fall will help
you when you need the million dollar question answered.
Let’s break down the unique personality of your company so we can
correctly identify your specific company culture.
An innovative/visionary type would be classified as a company and
management team who take risks and are eager to adopt new technologies
quickly. They welcome change and are open to risk because they see the
payoff to be significant, either in the form of profits, efficiency of
operation, inspiration to employees, leadership in the field, or any
number of other forms. They understand that early adoption may not always
work out, but they thrive on the excitement of the technology. This type
of company tends to hire enthusiastic, flexible overachievers who are
driven to succeed and want a new technology the second it goes into early
beta stages of development.
An early adopter would be classified as a management team and
organization that needs some stability before moving forward but looks to
its future, always wanting to have the latest technology as soon as it is
released. They are well-informed on new technologies as they develop and
emerge, and research the potential benefits of adopting the latest and
greatest. These people are leaders when it comes to implementing new
things, but they lead more cautiously than the innovative/visionary
group. An early adopter differs from an innovative/visionary as they do
not take as much risk.
The average adopter is defined as the company and management team who
must eventually move to the technology so they will not be left behind.
They dont seek the thrill and leadership role of being one of the first
out of the chute. And while they may acknowledge the possible payoffs of
the new technology, they prefer not to leave that which is comfortable.
They take very little risk and only change because everyone else is doing
it. They basically keep up with the Jones’.
Conservative management and organizations want to take no risk at all and
resist change. They will wait as long as possible to adopt a new
technology, and have the attitude of ”if it isn’t broke, don’t fix it”.
These are companies that fight to the very end when forced to change or
adopt any piece of new technology.
Keep in mind that the position of your management team toward change and
your company culture can vary depending on the type of technology you are
introducing. You may be cutting-edge on collaboration technology, but
conservative on your hardware infrastructure.
Now take a moment and try to identify where your management group and
company fit within this model on a specific technology you are interested
in adopting. For example, let’s say you are looking at a new piece of
technology for your company. You may ask yourself:
and dealing with a learning curve?
fees to implement?
Adopting emerging technologies, especially as an innovative cutting-edge
company, can be very rewarding and exhilarating, but it also can be
agonizing and painstakingly expensive if the technology does not work.
You have to have the type of company culture and management team designed
to take on these types of risks.
Some companies are average adopters and always will be. The more cautious
adoption timeline works for them and the people they employ. And some
companies have a reputation for their vision and innovation, and thus
attract employees who thrive on the risks and excitement of new
technologies and change.
By clearly identifying your group’s willingness to take risks, the impact
new technology will have on your business and employees, and the
flexibility and strength of the organization you have built, you will be
better prepared to move forward with bringing breaking technology in