Technology and Senior Professionals: The importance of staying tech-savvy

Technology never stands still. It changes and develops at such a rapid pace, that the biggest and brightest technological innovations of today can quickly becoming old news overnight. Keeping your knowledge of the latest tech updated can feel like you’re chasing a moving target; as soon as you’re close enough to have a confident grasp on it, it flies off and you have to start all over again. But just because it’s challenging, doesn’t mean you can get by without doing it.

Remaining current on major advancements in technology has become an increasingly integral part of a senior professional’s role. It provides you with an opportunity to scope out the latest capabilities that can improve your businesses’ productivity, sales and proficiency, that you might have been unaware of previously. Staying clued up can also help you find new software or apps that can reduce costs and streamline processes that might have become ineffective; making the overall business work more efficiently.

If you’re leading a team of millennials or Gen Z employees, who are renowned for the technological prowess, having an understanding of the latest tech jargon and programs that they are using will also help you to communicate and manage them more effectively. But that’s not all!

Attracting and retaining employees

Investing time in enhancing your knowledge can also help you to attract and retain the best employees to your business. In a recent survey by Salesforce, 71% of employees questioned said they wanted their workplace to provide them with the same level of technology that they use in their day-to-day lives. After all, nobody wants to be using laptops or smartphones that don’t perform as well as the ones they have at home. By having your finger on the pulse of the latest trends, you can better advise which technology the business should be using in order to entice new employees to your doors and encourage them to stay put when they do.

It also has benefits in terms of your own career. Whether you transfer to a new job within your organisation or outside with a new employer, in today’s digital world, employers will expect you to have technical knowledge and skills. Regardless of the role you’re applying for, if you’re unfamiliar with the latest and greatest tech being used in your industry, you could be putting yourself at a significant disadvantage.

Updating your tech knowledge

So now you know the importance of keeping your technological prowess relevant and current, you now need to consider how to do it. Here are some top tips on how you can stay up to date and become an even bigger asset to your organisation in the process.

Utilise social media

If you really want to strengthen your tech know-how, social media is a great place to start. There are countless social media channels, particularly on Twitter, that are dedicated to providing the latest news about technological breakthroughs and innovations. As well as a wealth of factual information, these pages also act as a hub where tech experts, innovators or lecturers will share their thoughts or start discussions in the comments. So if you really want to stay abreast of technology, it’s time to start utilising social media.

To find these groups, you can use hashtag searches or just generic searches of technological phrases on social channels such as cloud computing or AI. If you read an interesting article or watch an informative video about technology online, find out who the author is and search for them on social media so you can follow their account. You can then pose them tech questions or ask for advice, which they will no doubt be happy to share or will at least point you in the right direction.

Collaborate

 An effective way of finding out more about the latest tech developments and innovations is by collaborating with people who are more technologically adept than yourself. Within every organisation, is a self-proclaimed tech whiz who lives and breathes technology; you just need to seek them out. Ask around your office to help you pinpoint who this person might be and ask if they would be interested in helping you to expand your knowledge and understanding on a semi-regular basis.

By chatting to someone who knows what they’re talking about, you can get a much clearer idea of what topics you should be reading about or which trends to follow. You can also ask questions about technology in the workplace and they can provide you with far more relevant answers than the internet probably can, as they have the valuable insight of working within the same organisation too. You never know, they might even offer suggestions on improvements you could make to the tech being used in the workplace too.

Attend events

 Events can be a fantastic resource when you’re trying to learn more about the latest trends and technological challenges being faced by businesses today. Large events, such as Tech Leaders’ Summit and London tech week, are held throughout the year and give you the chance to listen to tech industry experts share their insights whilst mingling with the tech community. Many events also host Q&A sessions and hands-on demonstrations so you can pick the brains of some of the industry’s best whilst enhancing your skills.

But don’t disregard smaller scale events too. Networking events with people from your own industry can also provide an opportunity to start a conversation about tech innovations and how current tech could be improved, whilst gaining valuable information and insights.

With the help of these tips, you can strive to remain updated and keep a better pace in this period of ever-advancing technology. Experts have estimated that the technology tools we use within our workplace evolve to the next generation every 24 months. So, there’s no better time than the present to get yourself clued up.

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Michael Elliott

30th August

Career Advice