Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Use the tools, don't be one.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011
Working in a modern office is challenging, for many reasons.

But one of the largest points of frustration for me, and I'm assuming for the late-born half of Gen X and the entirety of Gen Y, or heck, pretty much every single person working in an office - is how we work with technology.

Some people catch on to new technology really quickly. It's second nature for a lot of us - because ultimately, once you master one platform or software suite or program, you can apply that knowledge to others. Without knowing much about software design or doing any research, I'm going to go out on a limb and assume that most of the tech we use in our day-to-day office lives is *designed that way*.

But the real problem comes when we assume that our coworkers all understand how to use these tools. Be it a blackberry, powerpoint, email, an FTP site, a digital camera, the internet - these are the basic tools of working in 2012. I'm not asking you to be able to write code or use CS4 or understand style sheets. I don't know how to do any of those things.

I'm asking that everyone who is employed in a job that requires use of email know how to send an email. That you understand how to send an email with an attachment. That you understand what a search engine is and how to find a file you've saved on your computer. And oh my god, saving to a common folder? What you talkin crazy about, girl?

I'd like to believe - it's my big dream, really - that we can get to a point in our society where people understand the scheduling function in Outlook. I have a calendar. I put my appointments in the calendar. I even block off time for lunch or the gym or a sanity break or whatever. When I need to call a meeting, I use scheduling assistant to select a time when everyone I need to attend a meeting is, indeed, free.

I do not send 15 emails asking if everybody can meet at 12:30. No? Not 12:30? How about 4? Sal can't meet at 4? How does Tuesday look? Ok! Tuesday! It's settled!

Oh, wait. Nope, Tuesday doesn't work for me. Let's look into next week...

Seriously. Do yourself a favour. Figure out what tools and programs you need to use in your job. Learn how they work. Then - and this is the shocker - actually USE them.


sylviamyoung said...

I love outlook calendar and really wish people would use it properly! This is sooo sooo true!!!!