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Last month I spoke about automation and integration as being an important aspect to working remotely and running your social business, nonprofit, consultancy (in my case) successfully.

It is easy to get caught up in the excitement of tech, or get overwhelmed by the choice and the terminology. I’ve seen clients jump from solution to solution in pursuit of a silver tech bullet – looking for that one thing, that one App, CRM, web tool that will make all their problems go away and speed them on their ever so efficient way. These clients will always be disappointed.

Tech doesn’t have to be overwhelming when you remember one simple thing: tech is there to serve your needs, not the other way around.

Too often we can get caught up trying to know everything that there is to know about an application or programme, losing sight of why we bought it in the first place. You don’t have to know every last little feature and function. You don’t have to be a super whizz to use a tool effectively. That’s what the IT department or help desk is for.

Rather, what you do need to know is this: what is your mission, how are you planning to get there and then, only then, what tech do you think you need to get you there. To keep it simple: its your why, how and then what. Some of you may have heard that before… if not, check out Simon Sinek. You don’t have to be able to specify every last detail right up front. Be clear with your supplier or consultant about what you want the tech to do and then use that as a yardstick to measure proposed solutions with. That way the tech is always serving the mission. Just the way it should be.

Are you in an organisation or an office where the tech has run wild: a filing system that no longer retrieves that file you saved just yesterday, a CRM system that cannot analyse donors or beneficiaries or clients? What are you going to do about it?


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