“The technology adoption lifecycle is a usable model to gain understanding into the adoption process of a new technology or product within a certain population or culture, such as an organization. What it doesnâ€™t tell us, however, is what value it creates as a result of technology adoption. To understand that, we need to look at how the use of a new technology or product affects the ability to perform tasks and achieve goals.”
The key question is not if people have adopted a certain technology, but rather how they are using it and how new and improved practices are being adopted. For an organization that seeks to improve its operations and management, the adoption of a certain technology isnâ€™t really interesting unless it creates value.
The potential value of a new technology lies in the new and improved behaviors and practices that might emerge when the technology is introduced to, and adopted by, staff. Itâ€™s when people change the way they behave â€” for the better â€” and find better ways do their work
It might seem like Iâ€™m stating the obvious, but the fact is, I havenâ€™t seen many organizations that have put nearly as much effort into understanding and changing practices as they have put into discussing product features when introducing new collaboration products.
It is important to realize that you can improve existing practices without introducing new technologies.
You can, of course, also introduce new and improved practices by introducing new technologies.
Eventually, it may lead to a changed behavior where employees share information immediately, instead of waiting for someone to come and ask them for it â€” a new practice has emerged.
You can also introduce a new technology without seeing any change in behaviors or practices. When introducing a micro-blogging platform, employees might continue to share information only when being asked to. They just do it on a micro-blogging platform instead of via email.
They can also continue to work in silos by creating closed groups to which they only invite and accept invitation requests from people they already know and work with.
When it comes to social software, you really wonâ€™t get much value from introducing a blog, wiki or micro-blogging platform unless you first change existing behaviors and practices. Otherwise, you will just be paving cow paths.
“The most captivating item in Michael Norton’s office is a Star Wars The Force Trainer, a toy that allows would-be Jedi warriors to levitate a Ping-Pong ball within a tube using only the power of focused thinking. Norton, a marketing professor at Harvard Business School, plans to study whether inducing people into believing they can expertly control the ball will affect the way they perceive themselves as business influencers.
In fact, Norton spends most of his time thinking about thinking. So it’s somewhat ironic that his latest line of research explores the idea of thinking too much.”
One view is that people often make decisions too hastily; they use shortcuts and heuristics, and therefore they’re susceptible to biases and mistakes. The implication is that if maybe they thought more, they’d do better.
And then there’s this whole stream of research about ways in which you should think more carefully in more logical waysâ€”creating decision trees that map out ‘if you want to do this, then you should do this and not that,
However, there has been little research that considers the notion that overthinking a decision might actually lead to the wrong outcome.
Having a leader who considers every detail sounds great in theory, but it can be suboptimal for moving forward with a decision. There’s a paralysis that can come with thinking too much.”
Very often managers find that there’s not enough time to think through every single scenario or customer segment, which can take months,” Norton says. “But too often the correction to ‘We don’t have time to do that’ is an over-correction to one hundred percent ‘We should go with our gut.’
Sometimes when you make habitual decisions, things work out fine. But that doesn’t mean they’re the best decisions. And if you’ve done something the same way for 10 years, it might be time to reconsiderâ€”to think a little more.”
What we know now is that people sometimes think too much, and sometimes they think too little. But we still don’t know the right amount to think for any given decision, which is a fascinating decision yet to be solved.