I saw this quote yesterday:
To stretch the analogy, technology is more like the egg in the learning cake.
Technology is a binding agent which bring other elements together. Too little and the mixture is weak and dry, crumbly, lacking structure and resilience. Too much and the mix becomes dense with a nasty aftertaste.
Technology though, is pervasive and has versatility in its use. It can be used in lots of different ways – primary, secondary and tertiary uses are commonplace.
The late Ray Wikins once described Australian footballer Ned Zelic as ‘versatile as an egg’ when he signed for QPR. Being able to play in numerous positions was the aim for Zelic who, having performed well in Germany, signed to QPR for (at the time) a club record fee.
After 4 games in 4 months, Zelic was loaned out to a German club and eventually sold on for a loss of £250k. His versatility imbalanced an already challenged group and disrupted (in a bad way) the team, which was eventually relegated at the end of the season.
Buying technology to build versatility only works if you that versatility works with other ingredients – your aims, structures, skills and culture. If it doesn’t work the end result can be disasterous.
Do you need to buy a Ned Zelic?