Truly embracing all technology has been a struggle for me. I still prefer a notepad and pen to a tablet or computer in a meeting. There’s just something about writing things on paper that gives me perspective. And, believe it or not, I don’t answer my cell phone during meal times and I even turn the ringer off at night.
But when it comes to technology that makes work easier I have been converted! When I first became ED of a local chamber of commerce I quickly realized that my biggest struggle was finding enough time to meet all of the organization’s needs. So much time was spent on administrative tasks that I really didn’t get out into the community enough.
What I didn’t realize at the time was that using the wrong technology was costing me more in time than it was saving me money. Our website was one of the biggest time suckers. It was built by a board member who loved technology and created a gorgeous website. While this was a cost efficient solution for the organization the main problem was that only he could update it. So any updates required multiple emails, reminders and cajoling.
Our membership database was a nightmare. The organization had invested in a membership system but it was extremely clunky. It was impossible to find any information and there were no online help options available. When we moved out of the database onto spreadsheets we ended up only retaining basic information about members and spending way too much time organizing and updating the spreadsheets.
What we really needed was the right technology for our sized organization. Something that had enough features to simplify life but not so many that it tooks weeks of training or could only be used by 1 person at the organization. While I was there we went through several options but found there was not much that would represent us well online and was designed for organizations our size.
Fast forward to the present and I’m still bringing a notebook and pen to all of my meetings, but I’m also utilizing some great technology tools to simplify my daily tasks. And I’m excited about working for a company that focuses on lessening the workload for people who run organizations.