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Embracing Technology With The Technology Cognition Chart

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Technology is not a rare concept to come by in today’s society. Yet, while many embrace advances and strive to become experts, others may find it daunting and difficult to understand. Robby Slaughter, a Principal with AccelaWork, recently discussed this topic on the Marketing Tech Blog.

In Productivity Secrets: Technology Isn’t Always Technical, Robby displays his theory on adapting to technology through the Technology Cognition Chart:

consultant's chart

He points out that skepticism is a natural instinct that comes when new advances in technology arrive. Therefore, instead of allowing fear of discovery to take over, visualizing how the technology can be integrated and used in our own lives is the first step to becoming competent users. According to Robby, technology is simply about “getting complexities out of the way so we can get more done and have more fun.”

The full post is certainly worth checking out, but for your convenience we’ve included some of his explanation below:

Blissfully Unaware
In the beginning, none of us have any idea what it going to appear next. And then one day, BAM, you hear that Google, the Food Network and the International Olympic Committee are joining forces to create an online social network for competitive arugula farming.

Not surprisingly, we don’t buy into things right away. Really? What I am going to do with a device that doesn’t have a keyboard? We ask ourselves, why do I need a machine that uses body language to send text messages on my behalf?

These questions, however, require a bit of technical understanding. We have to at least visualize ourselves using the new technology, and have some sense for how it might work in our own lives.

Discovery or Fear
As a technology becomes more prevalent, we come across a fork in the road. Either we can get it in a flash of discovery (Oh! I can keep up with old friends on Facebook. Cool!) or it never really clicks in our minds. The technology starts to pass us by, and we become afraid that we’re “just not smart enough” for the world around us.

(Not pictured: tech we get but don’t care about. For example, iPhone applications that make embarrassing bodily noises.)

Adopter to Expert
Sometimes we become fluent in the technical details of a new technology, and we want to take it apart and show off our prowess. As I write this post for The Marketing Tech Blog, I get to do so in raw HTML and add my own markup tags. The technical fluency isfun, because I’m sufficiently expert in doing so.

Towards Competence
Sometimes we become sufficiently competent in a technology, understanding just enough to know how to get by. You may not really understand how a touch screen works, but with a little practice and comfort you can get along using it just fine.

Towards Defeat
Sometimes technology seems hopelessly complex and passes us by. This is the most troubling of all positions, because it’s hard to help someone recognize that if only they understood just a little bit of the technical details (such as the difference between the search box and the address bar), they would be much better.


© Flickr user Mervi Eskelinen

Ideally, you’re a tech expert, using the latest innovations in the most productive way, but in reality, that may not be the case. Plenty of people find themselves behind the curve, or worse, slipping right off the track when they try to implement new productivity technologies. If you feel like that’s the case for you, then fear not! By being aware of the chart above and asking for help, you could see positive changes in no time. For more information, contact our business improvement consulting firm today.

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