We’ve been having some issues with our remote access. The tool we use works very well for some yet is a little temperamental for others. Understanding the problems has been difficult enough as it involves different devices and people’s home broadband connections. It has also been very difficult to sort the wheat from the chaff and a lot of unrelated issues have somehow got mixed up. It has been a frustrating period both for the users (or unable to users) and us as the provider. It has also caused some friction internally as to where the problems lie and who is responsible for sorting it out.
I know it’s no excuse but these things happen all the time in ICT and often the biggest trouble is in finding what is causing the problem in the first place.
I’m sure we will get to the bottom of it yet I have been thinking about our overall approach. In this modern world where the line between home and work life seems very blurred it is understandable that we need to be able to connect to the office from as many locations as we can. What we need to be careful of though is that this doesn’t create an environment where everyone is expected to be connected at all times.
It’s hard enough resisting the urge to check your smartphone every five minutes. Reading an unnerving email just before bed can lead to a fitful night’s sleep. Adding greater connectivity will only add to the rising pressure to respond to everything instantaneously. Our technology must support the kind of organisation that we want to become and we must be careful that it doesn’t allow us to become something we never meant to be.
For me a modern organisation reflects the different needs and working patterns of its people. Flexibility in styles and practices should be welcomed and encouraged but this must not be at the cost of making those who maintain a more traditional work approach feel old fashioned or out of sync.
In a flexible organisation the flexibility to stay the same must be accommodated.
The issues we are having have given us the chance to say stop and have a hard look at what it is that the organisation really wants. We’ll then know whether or not the product we have fits our bill.