We’ve all experienced a great deal of technological development within our lifetimes, and sometimes it feels like you’ve just gotten used to the way things work when something new comes on the scene and changes the status quo. Just as our phones and computers become outdated quickly, so do many of our technology-based business tools, and while it can be fun to play with new features on your phone, having to train your team on new technology or change the way your business operates to stay up-to-date with the times can be time-consuming and expensive.
No matter what industry you work in, being a business owner means adapting when technology and the culture around it changes. Thankfully, there are ways you can prepare for technological developments, stay ahead of the curve, and ease the transition to using new technology. Businesses that are ready for new developments and adapt quickly put themselves ahead of their competition and create better long-term business outcomes.
Whether you’re looking to update your project management software or implement AI into your business processes, here are my top three tips for adapting your business to new developments in technology:
1) Be open to change.
Let’s be real—adapting to new technology can be a big pain, especially when you have a system that works for your business already. It’s often expensive and time-consuming to adopt new technology, because on top of the purchase cost, you also have to retrain your team to use it. You may have to educate your clients about it, as well. But if you put off adopting new technologies in order to avoid retraining, you’ll soon end up with antiquated systems that don’t serve you as well as newer solutions could. Frequently, the cost and effort it takes to adopt a new technology is more than made up for by increased efficiency and capabilities. Stay open to change and don’t let a false sense of economy keep you from implementing new tools that could benefit your business.
2) Seek new technology with curiosity.
I firmly believe that a good business leader is driven by curiosity and never stops learning—it’s an important part of being adaptable in our changing world. Be curious about new technology and seek out information about it. This way, you’ll learn about the options available to you so you’re well equipped to choose tools that meet your needs.
New technology tends to come with a learning curve, but if you stay curious, you can get past the initial learning hurdle and learn how to adapt the tech to enhance your business and processes. You might discover tools that can provide improvements to your business you may never have thought of on your own. And by seeking information about the newest available tools, you can stay ahead of larger industry changes and innovate to help put you ahead of your competitors. When you adopt an attitude of curiosity and seek out new technological developments, you’ll inevitably find ways to make your life and business easier.
3) Be innovative, experiment, and implement.
To find the best ways to adapt to new technology, some experimentation is almost always necessary. It’s hard to know what will or won’t work for you until you give it a try. Test the tools with your team and invite feedback—sometimes the way you intend to use something doesn’t turn out to be the best way to use it. This process takes time, but it’s well worth it in the long run because it can keep you from investing in something that doesn’t meet your needs and will help you discover what technologies work well for your business. Then, when you find tools you want to implement, take the time to develop strong training for your team and support them through the transition.
By staying adaptable when technology inevitably changes, you put your business in the best position to weather whatever comes your way. Adaptability is a defining factor in whether a business survives long-term, and by preparing with an attitude of curiosity and willingness to change, you’ll create the best circumstances to take advantage of new opportunities and keep on the cutting edge of technology.