Technology Doesn’t Replace People

You probably know I love my technology gadgets. One of the things I love about technology is it allows me to interact with people I wouldn’t otherwise ever meet. Case in point: years ago, I connected with Jennifer V. Miller on Twitter. We have a lot in common. We’re both in the learning and development space and we’re both writers.

After connecting on Twitter, we decided to connect on Facebook. I got to learn about her life in Michigan. And she heard all about my life in Florida. Recently, we discovered that we were both at the same conference. So, we had dinner. It was fabulous. We talked about work, home, etc. Our technology connection turned into a real conversation.

That’s why I couldn’t help but smile when I saw this Time Well Spent from our friends at Kronos. Workplace technology helps us do a lot of things. And workplace technologies are very effective and efficient. But that doesn’t mean we can’t sit down and have an honest to goodness real-life conversation every once in a while.

Use technology to build relationships. Networking a decade ago involved a never-ending schedule of association meetings and banquet chicken dinners (you know the ones). And networking today still involves a bit of that. It’s not all bad. But it also involves connecting with people online. Social media can help build relationships.

Use technology to enhance relationships, not replace them. Take advantage of opportunities to chat in person with employees or colleagues. Relationships help us get things done. People will remember when you took the time to talk with them. Especially when it’s time to ask for a favor.

Using technology doesn’t mean you have to always be “on”. The Workforce Institute at Kronos has been sharing a series on the topic of “always being on” when it comes to technology. Check it out when you have a moment. Our relationship with tech doesn’t have to be “use it until we’re completely stressed out by it, then quit.”

I will be the first one to admit that life on social media today is different than it was a decade ago. Back then, you pretty much just saw what everyone was eating and today, politics comes up a lot. But there are still pockets of fun and opportunities to connect and engage with incredibly smart and talented individuals.

Those connections can be valuable. They can be fun. Don’t miss out on them. Not only in making the connection but turning it into something personal.



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