Jane Binnion column

Jane Binnion from Lancaster, social media trainer.
Jane Binnion from Lancaster, social media trainer.

When I decided last month to switch my computer, ipad and phone off more during non-work time, I was wondering what I would do instead, but there’s actually a ton of stuff to do.

I’m pretty sure that normally this time of year I’m preparing for hibernation, but thanks, in part, to the great weather we’re having I’ve never been so busy.

This weekend was clothes and music shopping, visiting friends, a trip to the seaside and of course the Lancaster Music Festival.

It’s interesting because it is said that our youngsters are an impatient generation, expecting everything instantly because of the digital world, but that isn’t my experience.

It’s actually me, who has lived with both, that gets frustrated by the trains being cancelled, queuing 10 minutes for smelly dirty loos and when attempting to pay for shopping, having to stand in a queue of 20 people as there are just two staff on the check out on a busy Saturday afternoon.

All that adds up to a customer experience that seriously makes me want to head straight back to shopping from the comfort of my own home.

But the young ones just seem to take it in their stride.

I remember when organisational mistakes were made and the computer would be blamed. We accepted that explanation because most of us didn’t understand computers well enough to know that computer error is actually human error.

To me the online world is mostly efficient, structured and organised, whilst the off-line world is so full of flaws; human error, disorganised, unreliable, poor decisions based on greed, short sightedness, miscalculation or a bad mood.

Human judgement is so flawed, and I guess that is what makes life so interesting. We never quite know what we will get with humans, and when we get smiles, laughter and random acts of kindness, it reminds us what life is all about.

Online may be efficient, but off line is so wonderfully illogical, random and unpredictable. I’m glad that human behaviour will never cease to amaze me, not least because that gives us lots to talk about on the long train ride home.