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Software Adoption, meet Personal Preference for Managing Information

November 12, 2007

Understanding the interaction bewteen software adotion and personal habits can be a “game changer”. Software adoption relies, in part, upon structuring information in a manner that is consistent and can be leveraged within the software.Personal preference for managing information represents a very strong habit. For some, it does not translate into a style that meshes with a purchased software program, and results in a software adoption obstacle.In fact, most people operate at one of four styles or levels of personal organization as they manage information:
          Level 1 – Organizes by responding to next… by email, walking around, opportunity, next idea,
                         conversation… (what’s next?)
          Level 2 – Organizes by lists, by calendar schedule (what needs to be done today?)
          Level 3 – Organizes by projects and getting all the details covered (What are all the things
                          that need to be done?)
          Level 4 – Organizes by goals and outcomes, (where are we going and how do

                          we get there?)

User’s preferred organization style directly effects what they naturally put into a program like ManagePro (vs. how you might need them to use it). You want to be clear on this is launching software. Clear on what the software requires in terms of information managmeent, and clear on what your user base and organizational cultural habits currently dictate.
What do you do if there’s a mis-match… if the introduction of software adoption and personal preference doesn’t go well?

In short, you lead the change effort to install new habits, not new personal organization preferences (those tend to remain fixed, like hand dominance… e.g. your dominant hand remains dominant, even if you learn to use your non-dominant hand), and using a combination of push and pull techniques, raise the bar. I’ll write about those details in another blog.

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