Is IT your X Factor or your Fear Factor?

Every organization uses technology, but not every organization embraces it.  Five of the most wildly admired organizations according to CNNMoney are Apple, Google, Berkshire Hathaway, Southwest Airlines, and Procter & Gamble.   Now, ask yourself if technology was the “X Factor” in their success?


In every case, technology was a key part of their success – their “X Factor” – and not just for Apple and Google.  Even Berkshire Hathaway, led by the eminently practical Warren Buffet, decided to make a major investment in IBM, clearly embracing technology.


For some, though, IT is the “Fear Factor”.  This group asks first how to protect and secure their data, how to lower their technology expenses, and – as we’ve been discussing recently – how can we get rid of our technology?  Often we hear, “Let’s push that technology into the cloud where it isn’t our problem anymore.”  For some this answer can work, and don’t get me wrong, managing security, availability, and IT expense can be worthy pursuits.  However, consider what could happen in your organization if you ask first, “How can our technology serve us more than it does today?  How can we turn IT to our advantage, instead of our bane?”


In order to tame the IT question, we must first ask another… do you truly use your IT?


Ask yourself the following questions to find that most basic answer:


  1. Can my clients, constituents, or prospects easily find us and engage us through our web site?
  2. Do I have confidence in the information I pull from my systems, without concern for its accuracy or timeliness?
  3. Is my information (contact information, inventories, financial data, transaction data, etc.) easily shared, organized, and protected?
  4. Do I have quick access and high visibility into the key business metrics that are predictive of our success?
  5. Am I using technology more effectively than my competitors?


If you answered no to 2 or more of these questions, we believe that you can stand to benefit substantially from a free review of your technology strategy.  You want technology to be your “X Factor”, right? So, don’t let that Fear Factor hold you back!