Have we become too reliant upon technology?
As an IT support firm our very existence depends upon technology, but we are not alone. For any business to survive, reliable and efficient technology is an essential component. It’s something easily taken for granted – you come into work, you turn on your computer, you log in to your accounts, you print your reports. It’s only when that technology doesn’t behave itself that you become aware of how reliant you are upon it.
A couple of months ago I was booked to run an all-day social media training session with a large company just outside of London. The date had to be set in stone as not all employees were based at their head office and therefore diaries had to be synched to ensure everybody was in the same place at the same time.
On the morning of the training day, and in order to arrive in plenty of time, I got into my car at illegal o’clock, turned on the engine, wacked the heating up and plugged in my Sat Nav. And I sat there waiting for it to power up. And sat there. And waited. I could see that the charger was working and the light on the Sat Nav was showing but it would not power up.
Time was of the essence……
Ok, maybe I could just use my phone then – that had a map app on it, that would get me there. Except when I went to go online, the network was down.
So what to do? I had to go, I had made a commitment not just to the company in question but also to those employees who were making the trip just for the social media training. Deep breath, decision made, I would wing it. Yep, I would drive the 50+ odd miles without the aid of any navigation technology.
Funnily enough, if you turn navigation systems off, you will see things called “signs” – sometimes we can forget that these things are there. And I went all old fashioned and I followed these signs and you know what? I got there, and I got there early.
It was a very liberating feeling, not having an electronic voice bossing me in the car to “stay in the left lane” and “take the exit”.
In this instance my backup plan was provided by, I suppose, the highways agency and local councils. But what about other technology that we rely upon? What if you got to work in the morning and your computer didn’t turn on? Or you couldn’t log in to your systems? Or there was no internet? Do you have any backup plans?
Taking a break from technology, whilst it had been a forced option, was a liberating and proud moment for me – but for many businesses taking a break from technology could be a disaster. Having a backup plan for technology failures is a must for all businesses today; but so is taking a personal break from technology as and when you get the opportunity.