We hear it a lot. Chamber professionals who don’t want to adopt any sort of social media because they believe their members aren’t using it. After seeing statistics about social media usage, many of them come around and are very successful using that format to connect with their audience.
But sometimes, just sometimes, you have board members and the like who really aren’t embracing technology. When that happens what do you do?
Chamber Tech: Prodding the Late Adopters
You don’t really want to prod them, but it often feels like that’s what you’re doing. But with the exception of ex-officio members of the board who have retired from the workplace, there’s not a business out there that couldn’t use additional exposure and efficiencies that come with tech adoption. It may be a bitter pill, but one that as the leader in business, you should be handing out.
Leaders must understand that if they are doing anything remotely innovative, they will face luddites. Choosing not to invest business revenue in the stock market, is a business decision that may or may not be a wise one. Overlooking the power of technology, on the other hand, is one that will eventually lead to the organization’s demise. If you become their tech mentor, expose them to it, help them learn it, and embrace it through working with you, you will be giving them a very valuable skill and business tool.
Here are some suggestions on how you can help them see the value of it:
Don’t give them a crash course in everything. Select what you require of them carefully. Facebook is an easy one to teach and it’s convenient for most people. When you expose others to this platform, they often realize how pleasant it is to use it to catch up with folks they haven’t connected with in years.
Let them know why it’s important they use it (from a chamber perspective) and what it can do for their business. For instance, if you’re going to start sharing all documents on Google Drive, let them know why it’s of benefit to the chamber. Then tell them how they can use it for their business as well.
Get help from influencers and work one-on-one with detractors. Don’t give your hold outs a platform (such as a classroom of peers) from which to air their tech grievances. Work with them one-on-one. Meanwhile, build an army of influencers who support the tech and can help you convey the importance of it.
You may not feel like it is your place to insist on a board member using a platform you desire, or keeping up with chamber news through a tech environment, but you’re not doing it for yourself. Teaching them, and mentoring them on learning a new technology, can provide amazing opportunities for their business as well.