*An excerpt of this post may also appear on the author’s personal blog*
My “day-job” is not normally something I broadcast online, mainly because of the work I deal with, and the firm I work for. Like me, my company doesn’t like a lot of attention. However, there will be times when a good outlet is required. This is where my like-minded friends who are also colleagues in the field, and I, have a good liberating chat about the pros and cons of working in technology.
There are many things I have learnt over the years, being in a co-technology-legal environment, most of which I can relate to, as I am a technology consultant with a legal background (best of both worlds). During our chats, my friends and I agree that there is one topic that repeatedly comes up, and it is one that we all relate to when taking on a new project. The middle individuals, or ‘the tech translators’ as I call them are key. These people are not limited to just being “in the middle,” they may also get involved in other areas as well, but they are important, as without them expectations are not set, and communication may not be conveyed adequately. Think about this the next time you are the customer of a new project and it is not going quite right. Perhaps the tech translators are doing way more than setting the expectations.
It is important that these people are not overwhelmed in their role, as this can impact establishing timelines and communicating updates. These individuals are able to translate legal (in my case) requests, and transcribe them into a language that the technology experts can understand, and vice versa.
I am one of those ‘middle people’, I am happy to say, and while there are some ‘dog days’, as with all industries, technology in the legal world has always been innovative and challenging, in the good sense. We are in exciting times, watching how technology evolves in particular sectors and how it is integrated into other industries. But we need to monitor its progression, otherwise we risk getting caught up in the whirl-wind of technology competition (like in the consumer sector with Apple and Android), releasing upgrades and new systems before the old ones have even been broken in. What we really need to ensure is that the end-user, as well as those behind the scenes are happy with the decisions made. After all, they are the ones using the new systems/project.
I will be posting more about this as time goes on, but for now I will park this topic on a note of frivolity, and that is, when in a room where half are filled with technology boffins, putting the world to rights, if you are not in that industry, or that way inclined, then just concentrate on something else. On one occasion, my husband (not a tech boffin) and a female friend (definitely not a tech boffin), watched the Happy Tree Friends, rather than listen to myself and the female friend’s husband rattle on, and on and on into the wee early hours of the following day.