Automation is all the rage, and rightfully so. Rather than remembering to do those thousand little things that add up, automation keeps everything humming along smoothly and on the right timeline. Set it and forget it!
Automation is great for tasks that can be run entirely in the background. Think of something like accounting software that automatically sorts charges into the appropriate chart of accounts. It’s also great for reducing redundant work – entering information in multiple places, for example. And reminders for quick, intermittent tasks – be sure to wish this employee a happy birthday! – are absolutely the stuff of automation.
But I’ve found over-enthusiasm for automation can end up backfiring. How quickly do your eyes glaze over when you see the fifth email in a row that clearly came from a robot? How often have you clicked in to one of those automated reminders only to discover that what’s been set up is clunky, awkward, or not quite applicable for what you need?
I’d advise using a gentle hand with automation for anything that is new, nuanced, or will be a little challenging for the person on the other side. It’s worth the extra time to get it done right, and get it done in a way that feels good for everybody involved. And for the routine, mundane, and tedious tasks? Onwards with automation!