How do you see technology? Is it a series of ones and zeroes that you can apply blindly to all situations, or is it something more subtle that requires a human’s perspective? With technology seeming to change at a faster and faster pace, it’s important to remember the human factor.

Technology and innovation

It seems like the speed of technology innovation is moving faster than ever. It’s common to hear that someone understands one technology—only to hear that it’s already obsolete and a new one has taken its place.

For those of us who work closely with technology, this can be scary. After all, we’ve worked very hard to learn technologies, get good at them and spend most of our career applying them. In capital markets, this might be technology like trading packages, or pure technology like grid, web or cloud computing services.

The question is, do you see technology as a means? Or an end? Ideally, you see it as an enabler.

Technology as an enabler

When I say that technology is an enabler, I mean that our value—we, as technologists—is in the application of technology. When we apply technology, we enable businesses to make decisions, improve operational efficiency or gain a competitive edge. Focusing on that value and our contributions to the business will distinguish us among the people we work with.

Technology enables us to be better consultants to our clients and better employees to our companies. By itself, technology doesn’t solve problems. It needs to be used appropriately, at the right time, by the right person.

Three men in a desert

In the video above, I tell a joke about three men wandering in the desert. I won’t ruin the joke for you, but I will say that it illustrates how important it is to use technologies appropriately.

What do you think? How else do technologists show their value in a company?

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