But that's just me... Notes from the Editor
Friday, July 27, 2012
Posted by: Kevin Berchelmann
Are you a
are you one of those techno-whizzes with all the newest computers, phones,
tablets and gadgets, extolling the virtues of the über-connected world?
Well, I'm sort of, but not completely. I have all the technology...all the cool
gadgets and such. But I'm hardly an
expert. Sometimes, though, people believe
I'm an expert since I can do many things with my technology that they cannot.
They are assuming I know a lot about it. And you
know what they say about assumptions...
deal: I know what I need to know, or have needed to know, to do the things I
need to do. Got all that? In other
words, I have none of the fancy
trivia about various technology applications and such floating around in my
cerebrum. If I know something about a
specific technology, it's because I've needed
to know it to get something done.
where you need to pay attention... consulting—even technology-centric
consulting—is manual. It's personal. It's analog.
But folks, this is 2012, and we're in a digital
age now, like it or not. We, as consultants, must recognize, understand, and
even embrace technology as a
communications and information efficiency platform. We must.
consultants on various IMC conference calls bemoan their "lack of
technical" skills, wanting forms sent to them (instead of downloading) and
remarks transcribed, instead of linking to a url. To quote the immortal Bob
We need to be
comfortable and reasonably proficient in all means and manners of current
communications and information-sharing technology. We have to understand how to
send an email attachment too large for email; need to use and access related
blogs and forums where information is routinely shared and disseminated, and we
need to be at the front of technology—at least as a user, if not an
implementer—instead of lagging back, using the same old and tired, "Yeah,
I'm just not that computer literate."
just not ok anymore. It's lame, a cop-out, and just an excuse to be lazy.
I like the
personal touch as much as anyone. In fact, I believe I oftentimes use it as a
competitive advantage. I send handwritten note cards, I call more than I email. I
meet and talk with people at breakfasts and lunches versus emailing. And I
believe my relationships—both professional and personal—are better for it.
But I also
have clients, colleagues, and friends who use technology as their most
preferred—and most effective—mode of communications. And I respond in kind. I
blog, tweet, and facebook. I manage my LinkedIn account, send an electronic
newsletter, and subscribe to a multitude of RSS feeds and forums. I use
Dropbox, carry a tablet for shorter trips, and have a smartphone roughly
equivalent to the total computing power of NASA in 1969. My smokin' laptop
syncs with my phone and tablet, and I can access every file I've ever created
from my smartphone, at any time.
at one time or another, I've needed this. So I learned it. I'm 53 years old,
not exactly a teenager, and managed to get proficient enough to fake my way
through a conversation with a technically-proficient GenY'er CEO. Not for
flash, but for function. Necessary function.
I believe we,
as management consultants, have the professional responsibility to embrace
current era technology, at least enough for basic use and understanding. To do
less is potentially short-changing our clients under the false cloak of
"I'm just not that technical."