Social complexity + Technical complexity

I've spent most of my professional career focused on the intersection of people and technology. Arguably, any software intersects with people - but I'm specifically interested in how technology supports and enabled existing processes vs. when technology constrains or inhibits existing process.

Thus, introducing new technology has the potential to affect its users base. And, potentially, user feedback can help shape technology. And in that respect, people and technology co-evolve together.

Pulling one side of the thread affects the other. People and technology are interconnected. Thus, they must be nudged accordingly - ensuring important connections remain; not excluding participants - yet increasing the level of opportunity for others.

Working with others requires being inclusive, hearing dissenting opinions, and yet maintaining focus on shared outcomes. Below is a pic about finding the good balance in constructive challenge - the creative friction that turns the wheels. Beware of combative or authoritarian situations and behaviors.

User needs represent a substantial amount of social complexity. Understanding those needs; what they are and how they evolve is an art and science. Technical complexity can be mitigated relatively easily. Social complexity requires more human effort. Understanding needs, empathetic listening and observation. Working along side and toward the same ends.

Be sure to account for social complexity when scoping any technical project.


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Afomi is the digital sandbox of Ryan Wold. This site, like myself, is a work in progress. I am always evolving it to better share my inspirations and aspirations.

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Ryan is a systems-thinking Product Developer and Designer who practices agile, test-driven, and lean software delivery, while solving problems with people.

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