We all know that some technologies are great, while others end up costing you time and money. But which is which?BusinessWeek small business blogger Gene Marks lays out his own personal top tens of good and bad technologies for small business.
Here's a quick rundown:
Worthwhile Small Business Technologies 1. Remote Desktop Technology 2. Desktop Sharing Software 3. Free Conference Calling 4. Wireless Connectivity 5. E-mail Marketing Services 6. Contact Management Software 7. Hosted Phone Systems 8. Messaging Software 9. SQL Server 10. Google Applications
Tech 'Solutions' Your Small Biz Can't Use 1. RSS Feeds 2. Spam Filters 3. Antivirus Software 4. Blogs 5. Search Engine Optimization 6. Mobile Applications 7. Customer Relationship Management Software 8. AdWords 9. Online Video 10. Web 2.0
To be honest, though, I don't see all that much difference in these two lists. In the right circumstances, I think every single one of them could work for small companies. And every single one could be a waste of time and money in the wrong environment.
For instance, remote desktops and desktop sharing can be great when you're on the road or dealing with a distributed team. But using them isn't always easy, especially if you only use 'em occasionally.
On the other hand, I have multiple RSS feeds coming into my MyYahoo home page, making it fast and easy to keep up on all the stuff I care about - without having to visit dozens of different Web pages.
To me, the key is your business' goals. If you know what you want, then it's relatively easy to choose the right tools. If not, even the best technology can end up hurting productivity, not helping it.
What do you think of Mr. Marks' lists?