with increasing pressure by the owners of those sites to make money from my data, so my personal privacy is diminished
With the start of 2013 comes the tradition of New Years Resolutions.  For many, this year’s resolutions will include digital technologies alongside the usual ones around diet and exercise.

Have you considered doing more to embrace the technologies of our digital society?

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NewYearsResolution1915SecondPostcard

[Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

There are simple things to consider like using a digital diary.  Today’s range of smart phones make it even easier to synchronize appointments and social engagements across the range of devices many of us now use.

Or contrarily, have you had enough of all things digital and resolved to actually talk to people instead of emailing or posting on social media sites like Twitter, Facebook or Google+?  Given the number of emails in my in-boxes, this is certainly appealing.

One of my new year resolutions is to check out (and clean up) what the world can see about me from my digital trails.  I have been comfortable with the personal information about me published on blogs and various social media sites.  But with increasing pressure by the owners of those sites to make money from my data, so my personal privacy is diminished.  So I need to go back to those social networking sites and review the settings on privacy filters.

This is becoming increasingly important as the more information published about me, the more exposed I am to cyber criminals.

Another area to consider is reducing our environmental footprint.  After decades of unfulfilled promises, the paper-less office is now becoming a reality.

This requires me to accept the inevitability of receiving bills electronically and to make a commitment to paying those bills on-line.  We have resisted this because it is simply easier to file paper invoices with the payment dates written on them.  However, our accountant moved last year to receive accounts data electronically and because that saves them time, it should save me money.  Shouldn’t it?

Many of you have a business website, right?

Not so according to research that shows between a third and half of companies do not have a website.  And of those that do, the majority are out of date and need renovating.

What this means is that your customers, particularly new ones, will have to contact you by phone, mail (!) or in person.  But these types of business interactions are in decline.  Compared to visiting a website, they are less productive for both customer and your business.

Whether you like the idea of it or not, your digital resolutions list must include social media goals.  If only for the reason of understanding how people use it and therefore, how social media can benefit your business.

In the same category comes having a presence on the mobile internet.  If new estimates from consulting firm Deloitte’s are correct, then the world will see one billion smart phones added to mobile networks this year.  This is a doubling of the existing number of smart phones and so is a trend that is ignored at our peril.

Whatever resolutions you make for today’s digital society, ensure that they are well planned and implemented according to the plan.  The benefits of doing so may not be all that clear, but the costs of not engaging with the digital society are.

Footnote

As I write this, news is breaking of more catastrophic wild fires in Australia.  That climate change is causing more and more extreme weather events is clear.   So to these digital resolutions we would be prudent to add individual and business goals around resilience and climate change mitigation.