Meta tagging, intuitive searchability, comprehensive workflow options… these things may or may not mean much to you, but I think we can intuit from the vocabulary that these are a part of a pretty fancy tool. It’s a tool I want. But is it a tool I need?
Lost files, wrong versions, and slow collaboration sent the small marketing team here in search of solutions. We have inherited bad habits and overworked ourselves out of being the solution. We complain. We can pinpoint what every party in our process is doing wrong (including ourselves: I know that those files shouldn’t only live on my desktop!) We know what we want.
We want streamlined workflows. We want everyone who needs permission or access to a thing to have it. We want collaboration. We want organization. We want to find and use things easily.
All I did really was ask the question – is there a thing that solves all these problems? And Silicon Valley answered: OF COURSE THERE IS, ANDEE.
It’s a fancy tool. It will take basically every item I work with every day, make it smart and findable, make it look pretty, make it easy for me to make other people see it and use it, and much, much more. We’ll find things. We’ll share things. We’ll collaborate on things. All on an intuitive and design-minded platform.
During the many demo meetings my team and I sat through, my eyes sparkled, I ooohh-ed, I ahhh-ed, I did lots of math in my head to justify that, sure we can use that tool that’s included for free even though that’s not a current part of our process at all! Of course, we need analytics – data, data, data! The price tag hurt me existentially – the sticker shock was real.
At the end of the last demo where pricing was discussed, negotiated, and brought to what was likely a reasonable level for the service we were being offered, I developed a thorough and convincing argument in my head for my boss to his boss that we NEED THIS! It would change everything! I fretted, lamented that the fancy tool wouldn’t be mine. Things would continue to be so miserable!
And that’s when one of the best parts of me kicked in. Would it be so miserable? Is there naught I could do myself to solve these problems? OF COURSE THERE IS, ANDEE.
I can’t do everything the fancy tool would do, not by a long shot. But I can conceivably solve a lot of the problems that are institutional and that are a part of my own and my team’s processes. By taking a firmer stock of what we are doing, what we could be doing, and simpler solutions, I will save myself a lot of time, a lot of headaches, and a lot of money.
Maybe the fancy tool will be mine someday – anything is possible – but I’m a productive and creative thinker and sometimes the solutions need to start with you. Especially before you pay a company to implement something your process isn’t even prepared for.