First, is the fact that we are all connected – and that the technology that connects us allows us to communicate, collaborate and compete at a global level that was previously unimaginable (Friedman, 2007);
Second, as our technology – and our understanding and use of it – has expanded, knowledge management has evolved from a basic database repository to a structure that allows us to easily access and leverage collective knowledge (Dixon, 2009);
Third, This technology is revolutionizing the way we work and our workplaces are being transformed into a wirearchy as “rapid flows of information erode the pillars of rigid traditional hierarchies” (Husband, 2013);
Finally, this wirearchy allows connected individuals to accomplish what once only large organizations could (Jarche, 2013). Networked employees can now work independently and effectively from almost anywhere thanks to a wide array of technological assets they can access (Madden, 2008).
While these last several weeks have been filled with valuable learning moments, it is also quite clear that my education in technology will not end with the conclusion of this course. Given the speed at which technology advances and the incredible impact it has on our lives, our work and our world, this will be an ongoing learning process for me.
Equally important is the recognition that we learn not simply by being connected – but by being engaged. As this course has shown, it is not simply the sharing of information but the rich and engaging conversations among classmates that often produce the most valuable learning moments. In today’s wirearchy, therefore, it is important to be connected to active, engaged, like-minded lifelong learners who share a commitment to expanding knowledge.
Additionally, now more than ever we recognize that the rapid advancement of technology in the flattened and connected world in which we live provides opportunities for both unparalleled collaboration and competition (Friedman, 2007). To limit and avoid unnecessary competition, therefore, my outreach efforts to potential global partners will most certainly increase in the years to come.
Finally, my comfort level and flexibility with new technology must increase. As Carly Fiorina stated, “the last twenty-five years in technology have been the warm-up act. Now we are going into the main event – an era in which technology will literally transform every aspect of business, every aspect of life and every aspect of society” (Friedman, 2007, p. 231). Husband (2013) reinforced this sentiment stating that while the last thirty years have been about “the building of the technical infrastructure that provides an interconnected world,” the next fifty years will be focused on our ability to adapt to the interconnected world and workplace.
In other words, the only thing we know for certain about our current technology – is that it will change. As leaders, we must not only adapt to such change – but embrace it – and provide the necessary support for technology so that it can not only grow and expand our economies but improve our world in the process.
Friedman, T.L. (2007). The World Is Flat: A brief history of the twenty-first century
New York: Picador/Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
Dixon, N. (2009, May 2). Three Eras of Knowledge Management. Retrieved from NancyDixon.com:http://www.nancydixonblog.com/2009/05/where-knowledge-management-has-been-and-where-it-is-going-part-one.html
Jarche, H. (2013, November 5). Networks are the new companies. Retrieved November 21, 2013, from http://www.jarche.com/2013/11/networks-are-the-new-companies
Madden, M., Jones, S. (28 September 2008). Networked Workers. Pew Internet & American Life Project. Retrieved from http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2008/Networked-Workers.aspx