Do you know where you’re going?
I spoke recently with a business leader who, following advice from a technology advisor, replaced a server because it was nearing “end-of-life,” only to find out the provider of his most important line of business software was upgrading to a version the new server would not support. Can you imagine how much this cost in hard dollars and lost time? Were the business leader and the technology advisor following a technology roadmap or simply reacting to something they had no control over?
George Harrison (Beatles and Traveling Wilburys) wrote the song “Any Road.” Not one of his best musically, in my honest opinion, but offering some words of wisdom, nevertheless: “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there.”
Do you know where you’re going when it comes to your technology and how your business will be affected by it, especially in our ever-changing world? Or are you in a reactionary mode, applying technology “band-aids” to stop the bleeding? Are those reactionary changes in your technology simply roads leading you to an uncertain, unexpected, and eventually destructive place?
If you plan for your business to grow, either in revenue, profitability, or both, Darren Hardy of Darren Daily suggests five key areas of focus. These should involve simple, clear, and certain systems:
- Communications (email, telephone, and collaboration applications)
- Project Management (prune tasks that are not really projects)
- Data (is the important data easy to find?)
- Financial Reporting (are you measuring the right things?)
- Customer Touch Points (invoices, proposals, blogs, etc.)
So, how does technology impact these systems, and can it make them really work for you now and, more importantly, in the future? I’m guessing if you polled your team, they would point out ways your technology is interfering with, not helping, your critical systems support your growth plans.
Here’s an idea: Make a practice of frequently reviewing your growth plans with your team and how those plans will impact your key systems and the technology that supports them. Be sure to include your managed service provider or another technology resource, and create a technology roadmap that is regularly updated to make sure you’re not just following any road, but the road to success.
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About Davis Merrey
Davis, is Owner/CEO of TeamLogic IT of Oklahoma City, part of an international network of franchisees providing IT support for businesses. He brings many years of experience in a variety of technology related industries, leading teams in providing technical solutions that respond to critical customer needs. The company culture is defined by its Mission Statement: “To help our fellow employees and clients be successful”.
Davis earned a BS in Electrical Engineering from the Virginia Military Institute and an MBA in Management from Golden Gate University in San Francisco. He serves on several business related and non-profit boards of directors.