Shannon Cunningham

You Can’t Hug a Goldfish: Top 5 People Tips for Tech Projects

Blog Post created by Shannon Cunningham Employee on Feb 13, 2015

Who knew a story about a 3rd grade festival where I won my goldfish would come in handy?  I remember walking down the aisles of the summer festival, peering at all of the games. Carnies barking out, “Come on little lady, try your luck!” And other encouraging messages, all the while being mesmerized by colorful stuffed animals, painted mirrors, and dings, zings and buzzes.  Then I spotted it: A worn out wooden sign with a goldfish leaping out of a bowl. I had to have one.  All I had to do was toss a Ping-Pong ball into a bowl with a fish and bingo I could be a winner.

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I was awarded three balls for a $1.  The first ball I threw too hard and it bounced to the next booth. The next ball bounced the other direction.  The third ball made it into a bowl but it didn’t have a fish so, no winner.  $5 later the carnival worker felt sorry for me and handed me a goldfish in a plastic baggie to take home.  “Johnny” lived with us for about a month before he met his floating demise.

 

Technology implementations often times end up like poor Johnny, nearly half them, actually. But we can help you fix those odds by adding a few people tips for your technology projects.

 

Here are 5 people tips any company can follow:

Tip

Topic

What does that really mean?

Why do I need to do this?

1

Stake Holder Analysis

Talk with your executives and understand their initiatives surrounding this project and others, especially ones you may not know about.

Not everyone shares the same vision of a technology project and in some cases technology rollouts may be competing directly against another one. Gaining understanding and weighing odds and outcomes will save you a lot of heartache.

2

Evaluate Organizational Readiness

Find out a company’s appetite for rolling out a new technology.

There may be other projects that are geared to roll out in the same time frame or offer similar services.  Likewise, there may be another program that is sun setting, changing the direction of your project.

3

Evaluate Audience Adaptability

While you may think it’s just a new technology and it’s great, it’s important to anticipate the amount of disruption or planning needed to successfully roll out your program.

You need to consider all aspects of what’s changing with a new technology, vs. the technology, itself. 

Does the audience have the right equipment and devices? Do they need training on the device before we roll out the technology? How much process change will impact their jobs? Are anyone’s responsibilities being replaced? Etc.

4

Develop a Communication Plan

You need to tell people something is coming soon.

People don’t like surprises unless it involves money or cake. Sorry but those are the rules.  Plan to let people know something is coming and how it will benefit their jobs.

5

Training

Teaching people the proper way to use a new technology is the best investment you can make in your project

You read the part about “Johnny” only living a month, right?

Outcomes