Technophobia is a fear of advanced and modern technology, which in today’s society includes tablets, smartphones, computers, and all the technologies prevalent within each one. Why are technophobes afraid of emerging tech? A lack of understanding and knowledge for one, as well as an overriding mistrust of the technology in question. In fairness to the technophobe, the world’s literature and cinema have not helped matters. Painting a bleak future where technology in essence ‘takes over’ our society, films such as The Terminator and 2001: a Space Odyssey, and novels such as Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, have proclaimed a frightening depiction of technology gone wrong. And what once was fiction is now becoming reality as inventors continually push and strive for bigger and better things. It is perhaps right to be cautious at times, but when it comes to business, the technophobes amongst us will find ourselves falling behind if we don’t keep up with at least a few of the advances being made.
Of course, for many of us in business, we have learned that technology is not a bad thing at all. It is to be welcomed rather than feared. And in truth, business has always revolved around technology, from the humble beginnings of the typewriter and early forms of computer hardware, for example, through to the advanced computer hardware and software systems governing the way business operates today. Business leaders have learned to evolve with changing technology, as life should, in theory at least, become easier as a result. For the most part, if you want your business to succeed, you have to adopt the latest technology or suffer failure as a result. Your nearest business rivals are likely staying in touch with technological trends now, and your customers will be looking to streamline the way they do business with you by using some of that very same tech. If you aren’t playing catch-up, failure may not be too far behind.
You may not be a technophobe at all, and you may be actively embracing the very latest technology in both your personal and business lives. On the other hand, you may have misgivings, but in order to stay current, you have adopted technologies in the realization of the consequences if you don’t. However, if the following mindsets are true to you, your relationship with technology may be closely attributed to technophobia. Do you think…
– New technology is complicated and difficult to use
– New technology is a fad, and there is no point in taking the plunge until it is tried and tested
– New technology is no replacement for the tried and tested models you are used to
Or, at the extreme end of the spectrum…
– New technology must be avoided at all costs; it is dangerous and untrustworthy
If your mindset corresponds to any of the above, then it is time to change your perspective. If you fall into the extreme side of things, then counselling may be in order to improve your relationship with technology. At the less extreme sides of the spectrum, you should still focus on a rethink. While you don’t need to adopt every tech initially – some may actually be a fad – you should still research sufficiently each technological trend that comes into play and be mindful of them when considering your business setting. They may help you within your operation, and by declining to move forwards with the times, you may struggle to survive in business. As we alluded to before, it is your competition and customers that need to be at the forefront of your mind, and so a focus on new technology does need to be a part of your business plan.
The following are some of the technologies driving today’s businesses. Have you caught up yet?
Blockchain: No idea what blockchain is? Check out this handy guide for beginners to keep you up to speed. Making waves within modern commerce, blockchain is being integrated within a range of business in and outside of the financial sector. The folks at IHTCoin.com have utilised the technology for the real-estate sector, for example, and those involved in retail are also seeing the benefits.
Artificial Intelligence: A technology you will be aware of, but not as frightening as the images depicted on your tv screens in shows such as Westworld. Chances are, your business is already using AI now, especially if any of these examples are relevant to your business.
Augmented Reality: Through the use of head-mounted displays, AR has become the latest trend for gamers. However, becoming immersed within the virtual reality this tech offers is also becoming relevant to business, and has many practical uses for a range of industries. Could it impact your business?
Time moves on, and the wheel of business keeps turning. Some of the newest technologies may be confusing, but research is key. The latest tech streamlines productivity and offers benefits for the customer, so technophobia needs to be overcome. As popular video chain Blockbusters discovered to their detriment, if you don’t keep up with the latest technology (in this case video streaming) you will struggle to stay afloat in this ever-changing world. Change your mindset today to define your ability to survive in this brave new world.