Are You Purchasing Effective Tools?

Written by lewsauder

April 5, 2012

Effective Tools

Are You Purchasing Effective Tools?

I’m pretty handy around the house.  My workshop has a decent supply of tools and I can fix and maintain most of the issues that occur in my home.

If something breaks, I assess the situation, decide how to best approach it, get the necessary tools and fix it.  If a nail is sticking out of a piece of trim, for instance, I’ll get a hammer and drive it back in.

As a general practice, I don’t walk around the house with a hammer looking for nails that are sticking out.

Since I work in technology, I read a lot about all the cool technology tools that are available.  So do members of my team.  I get suggestions all the time telling me how much more productive we could be with some cool gadget or software.

Cool tools vs effective tools

I always ask the question, “Do we want this tool to walk around looking for problems to solve, or are our issues calling for this tool?”

There is some very cool technology in the market today and it seems to get cooler every day.  Many of them increase our productivity and make our lives easier.

But a $10,000 investment in a tool should improve our productivity – or our bottom line in some way – by more than $10,000.  It’s not always a hard dollar savings; there are always intangibles that play into the equation.

But if it doesn’t help us in some way, we could invest the money in something else that better advances our cause.

It’s the difference between buying a toy and buying a tool.

If you would like to learn more about working in consulting, get Lew’s book Consulting 101: 101 Tips for Success in Consulting at

Your comments and criticisms are welcome.

Lew’s Books at Amazon:

Project Management 101
Consulting 101
The Reluctant Mentor

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