Technology colonialism vs technology innovation?
Your new technology innovation and processes are colonizing the company. History has taught us that colonizing in general hasn’t been the best for the colonized. I’ve been a part of receiving end of these efforts and through my hard work I was able to to benefit from these changes. I am the type of person who thrives in change while some of my friends and colleagues do not. In my new position there are components of change management, innovation and culture changes. I start the process of learning about this as I do everything by reading books, blogs, taking courses and of talking to mentors who have implemented these types of changes in large organizations. I have the benefit of having at my disposal the monetary means to purchase books and training materials and the culture capital to have friends at some of top consulting firms responsible for changes. As I am researching about these topics a thought came up on colonization which made me dig deeper and start to ask myself are we masking colonization in a different form such change management, or technology innovation?
For example colonization happened in parts of the world through religion by sending missionaries who would discuss new ideas, ways of thinking and new concepts. For me, the missionaries were executing a change management process even though it might not have been called a change management process it sure seems like one. Missionaries discussed new thoughts bringing in a new religion and culture. The missionaries created a sense of urgency that these changes were needed or else their immortal souls would burn in Hell for all eternity.
If we look at modern day missionaries who I would call consultants I see similarities. Consultants will tell large companies disruption is happening, your company is losing market share, talent and of course revenue because these startups and smaller companies are adopting new technology, don’t have legacy issues and pay salaries and benefits that are my in line with what the workforce wants well at least that is what I am being told.
As I look back on the great tech that I have implemented in the past I realized I implemented a new culture, I eliminated jobs, and forced change that helped the company. Do not get me wrong I am a huge proponent of test driven development, new coding languages, automation of everything, agile, and design first thinking. At the same time I am keenly aware that these changes will cause job losses, dissatisfaction with a company, turnover and conflicts amongst people. I am hoping that I can implement my innovation in a way that does includes a form of colonization which is beneficial to both the colonized and colonizer. Writing that last sentence was difficult and contrary to everything that I have been taught in life. I have to try as this will lay a foundation for even newer ideas and innovation model that I call the innovation of the oppressed