How to stick to a New Year’s Re(IT)solution

So 2015 is now just a few weeks old and that meaningful New Year’s resolution is now just a distant memory.

We all know, New Year’s resolutions year-on-year aren’t kept for very long. After a few months, weeks or even days it’s back to the same old bad habits.

It’s not easy to make positive changes. You have to be committed and importantly (like with all change) you need a plan. Putting your objective(s) on a piece of paper is just the start, a written plan is vital, as writing it down means that it is no-longer just a thought in your head and now you can work out how to achieve your objective(s). Small, actionable steps along the way will make it happen.

Think about someone resolved to improve their health. Without a specific plan about eating well, exercising, etc. the chance of success would be severely diminished. Good intentions alone are probably not enough to maintain focus on what they need to be doing.

Dependant on will power they might do great for a while, but as the pace of life picks up, things start to slip. Missing a gym day as it’s been a long day already and you have an appointment with the sofa instead. They find themselves eating unhealthy food because it’s more convenient. Before long, they’re no longer working towards their goals, and they’ve started thinking (and convincing themselves) about how next year will be different.

For businesses this objective-setting exercise is no different. Every year organisations set admirable goals for development, but these goals stand little chance of being achieved if the business doesn’t adequately plan how to accomplish them.

Let’s look specifically at business IT…

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What’s Your Goal: Before you figure out the right IT plan for you company, you must have a clear idea of what you’re trying to achieve…the BIG picture. You might have an excellent plan for achieving certain goals but if they are the wrong goals, then you’ve wasted time, effort and resources.

Going back to our improved health analogy, how do we decide what “improved health” means. Is it weight loss, improved cardiovascular fitness, strength training or better flexibility? The individual decides what they want to achieve and then may consult a specialist, such as a personal trainer, to put steps in place to achieve their overall goal.

Similarly many business organisations will have corporate objectives (e.g. flexible working hours for increased employee retention) that can be achieved through the means of IT (introduction of remote working IT solution). It is these IT objectives that then need to be broken down with a specialist to determine the key aspects of their plan.

Some times an external influence may also affect and have an impact on IT (just as a health-scare might shock the individual into action). Do you expect significant business growth and need to prepare for it? Do you need to upgrade to a new technology to remain competitive?

Plan to achieve the specific IT objectives that you have, otherwise you’re likely to end up with technology “solutions” that aren’t the right fit for your organisation, just because a solution delivers ‘business benefits’ doesn’t mean it will deliver them for you!

Eyes on the Prize

When setting your IT goals, it’s crucial to stay focused on the overall business plan. IT doesn’t exist for IT’s sake, it exists for the sake of accomplishing business strategies. Similarly, if you set IT goals that aren’t aligned, your IT investments will be less productive than they potentially could be.

The essential question is: what IT solutions do we need to achieve our business goals? As you look at specific areas of the organisation e.g. asset management, system integration, remote connectivity, security, disaster recovery, license compliance in your IT plan, never lose sight of the business plan and why you are investing in technology.

It Can Be Done

Although most New Year’s resolutions aren’t kept, some are and hopefully as we have alluded to the key is good planning. If a resolution (or even ongoing objective) for your business is to improve IT, you can make that happen with a solid plan that’s specific about goals and tightly tied to the company’s business strategies.

If you would like to speak in further detail about how Innov8 Technology can work with you as an IT provider, helping you set, work towards and achieve your IT and business objectives please simply contact us.