In our Zoom-fatigued, stressed-out world of 2020, how can we build a better way to work?
It’s the question on most business leaders’ minds right now — not to mention school superintendents and principals. How do we get the right resources to make our new perma-work-from-home reality actually work?
I recently got an answer that helped me think differently.
I was talking to Bob Walters, President and COO of Rocket Mortgage. I asked him how he uses technology to make work better. His response was mostly about culture — and not a lot about technology. But when he did talk about technology, he framed it in in an obvious way, but one that we don’t talk about much.
Technology = tools to solve problems
Bob knows that you can’t create a better experience just by buying new technology. “When I think of technology, I just think of tools,” he told me. “Fire was a technology, the wheel is a technology, the printing press is a technology. If you just think of tech as tools, then you can think about how to best use tools. How do you leverage them? How do you incorporate them? Because a tool is useless without a user and a use case to adopt it.”
“A lot of people think, ‘What’s my technology budget? What can I go buy?’ but the real question is, ‘What are you trying to solve?’ How are you going to change people’s lives for the better?”
Bob mentioned Sift, as an example. Everyone at Rocket Mortgage uses it, but Bob is a power user. For him, Sift is a helpful tool because it makes his everyday work life easier and better. Before he gets on a call with someone new, he looks them up in Sift. “I’ve used Sift five times already this morning,” he said. “I want to know: Who’s that person? Who do they report to? Who’s on their team? What are their skill sets? It gives me a broader sense of who they are, and that makes me better at my job.”
If we think about technology as tools to help us solve problems, not as items to check off a list or squeeze into a budget, our whole approach changes.
What problems are you trying to solve? How can you change people’s lives for the better? When we ask the right questions, we get much better answers.
Looking for more advice like this? Download our eBook on How to Build a Best-in-Class Digital Workplace below. You might see some words of wisdom from Bob himself.