From the Business Leader September 2004 – The High-Tech High-Touch Paradox
The High-Tech High-Touch Paradox
by Tom Stevens
The more we embrace technology, the more we need to embrace human interaction.
Despite plenty of detractors, technology is overwhelmingly embraced as a means to make work easier and more productive, and help us live happier, healthier, and more full?filed lives. Much less acknowledged, however, is the corresponding phenomenon that the more we embrace technology, the more we need to embrace human interaction
To gain value from high tech, we have to know how to properly utilize it. Application and implementation of high-tech requires continuous learning and re-learning– a high-touch activity. All around us are examples of organizations that have invested in high-tech information management systems, only to have managers direct people to redundantly collect and process information by hand – typically because they either don’t know how to use the system, or have little motivation to do so. Workers complain that they’re spending increasing time with data entry that detracts from time spent on tasks they deem more valuable. People feel they are serving information systems rather than information systems serving them.
Application of high technology requires high-touch – to design experiences that address differing learning styles, to assess differing abilities and desires so people can be placed where they make the greatest contribution, and to build a sense of purpose that creates a compelling reason to apply the technology in the first place.
Read the whole article here: The High-Tech High-Touch Paradox