Empowering Tech

Emerging technologies can help communicate the value of interior design and drum up new business—here’s how to put them to work for you.

by Barbara Marini, FASID, IDEC

From a communications perspective, online technology can provide a fully integrated means of communication for your business. Wikis, for example, can provide a vehicle for your clients and staff to post data, project information, videos and photos, or status updates. Wikis allow you to secure information as desired, providing internal and external communication in various formats. In addition, they can also be used to promote design conversations and provide marketing opportunities and training. There are numerous templates and technical assistance available if you want to try one out; you can then share your wiki with a preferred network or through social media.

We have the benefit of experiencing some of the most incredible technology ever known, and it has the ability to enhance our businesses and our lives. Every version of a smartphone seems to do more, have more features and be more connected, while software becomes more integrated with cross-platform functionality. While these tools can make us more adept at running a successful business and increase our efficiency, it is important to consider, however, that using technology solely to simplify a task or focus on efficient outcomes tends to result in short-term solutions. In fact, there are those, such as Professor Clay Christensen of the Harvard Business School, who maintain that technology’s concentration on efficiency is in essence “killing innovation.” He warns of the danger in confusing innovation and efficiency when adopting technological solutions.

He certainly has a point, but when used to empower innovation, technology can create new avenues for business, transform lives and create meaningful, sustainable opportunities that allow for future development. Early adopters embrace technology as it leads to innovative outcomes demonstrated in today’s successful businesses. There are many opportunities to adopt a personal policy of open-mindedness, and to explore and incorporate technology that suits your needs. There are no rules that apply, but creativity, innovation and forward thinking are definitely required.


Barbara Marini FASID, IDEC is the national president of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) and owner/principal of Marini Interiors, Inc. a commercial interior design and consulting firm in Grosse Pointe Park, Mich. ASID can be reached at (202) 546-3480 or asid@asid.org, and on the web at www.asid.org.


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