5 Ways to Reduce the Stress of Introducing Your Team to New Tech
So you’ve discovered a new tool that could be a game-changer at work. Wonderful!
The problem? You’ve got to get your team on board with it to get the most use out of it, which can be an intimidating process.
If you’re incorporating new tech in your team’s work stack, these five tips will help ensure a smooth transition.
1. Lean on company blogs and help centers.
When learning the ins and outs of a new app, I like to do my due diligence — which usually means Googling questions, scouring subreddits, and reading relevant Twitter threads. Talk about tab overload.
Bookmarking these pages will save you time when you or a colleague have questions that are best answered by an insider, making the onboarding process far less burdensome for you. Chances are you’ll pick up on some new tips and tricks along the way!
2. Don’t rush it.
In an ideal world, we’d all immediately hit the ground running every time we’re introduced to new tech. Sometimes, it's possible. 😉
On average, though, it takes about 66 days to develop a new habit, and one study suggests we’re more likely to develop new habits successfully if we repeat them within the same context over a consistent time frame. Everyone adapts at their own pace, so give your teammates time to incorporate new tech into their routines to make it stick.
Let’s use Loom as an example: Encourage your teammates to start out by replacing one message they’d typically write out or share synchronously — like an email status update to your manager — with a video message, and then increase that number over time.
If you’re worried that this process might drag on, set clear onboarding goals for new tech and communicate them clearly with your team, and even bake it into your quarterly goals or OKRs if possible.
When a former company first adopted Slack, we started off using it very casually with the goal that it’d replace email as our primary communication strategy by the end of that quarter. It gave everyone — including the tech laggards of the group — enough time to get acclimated with it before it became a major part of our work stack.
Further reading on goal setting:
How to Set Goals for Employees — The Wall Street Journal
3. Reinforce the “why.”
One of the best ways to get your team readily on board with new tech is to have a quick, clear answer to, “Why are we using this?”
Organizations can use the same tool in a variety of ways — at my last job, for example, we heavily relied on email to communicate with one another, whereas at Loom, I only check my email inbox once a day.
Having solid reasoning why your team should adopt new tech to make for a more positive work experience should be top of mind when you introduce it to them, be it for timesaving benefits, the ability to streamline processes, or to build stronger connections between teammates or customers.
Pro-tip: Opt for asynchronous methods of communication — like emails, Slack messages, or video messages — for non-urgent questions to respect everyone’s time.
At Loom, we highlight our team’s favorite use cases for Loom in our Quick Tips from Loommates blog series to showcase the many ways Loom can help you get your job done efficiently, effectively, and expressively.
4. Document your processes.
Because not all organizations use the same tools in the same exact ways, documenting your unique processes and best practices will help newcomers to ramp up quickly. You can also leverage these resources to provide existing employees with records they can continually reference over time.
I’m a visual learner, so I gravitate toward consuming video walkthroughs of complex ideas. With Loom, you can store videos in Personal, Shared, and Team Libraries for enhanced documentation.
Pro-tip: Record synchronous meetings with Loom and refer back to them any time at 2x playback speed.
5. Practice empathy.
Emotional intelligence (EQ), which includes empathy, is one of the most essential workplace communication skills (and one you can improve upon over time!). Introducing your team to new tech is a great way to hone your EQ.
Think about how you felt when you first used the tools you can’t live without today. You probably encountered a few bumps in the road, but the payoff was ultimately worth it. So make yourself available to your teammates when they do run into issues, listen to them, acknowledge any frustrations they may have, and work with them to feel more optimistic about adopting new tech.
Many studies show adopting a positive attitude can help you feel less stressed, so remind yourself and your teammates to have fun with the process. After all, you’re taking proactive steps to expand your skill set, which is always worth celebrating.
Pro tip: Add a burst of confetti to your next Loom video, available with the desktop app. Mac: Command + Control + C / Windows: Control + Alt + C
Remember: The only constant is change.
No matter where our careers take us, we all have to adapt to new technology over the course of our professional lives — and help others do the same. Keep these tips in your back pocket and you’ll be well prepared whenever those times come.
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Written by Karina Parikh
Karina is a Content Marketing Manager at Loom.