Louis Richardson 120000HRWE firstname.lastname@example.org | | Tags:  quickr connections social-business | 1 Comments | 1,601 Visits
Today I had the privilege of sharing our social business message to a wonderfully warm audience in bitterly cold Helsinki. It was a great day of conversation with representatives from a variety of industries and like usual, I learned a great deal from our interactions.
Many in the audience were from small to medium sized businesses and after my session I was approached by a number of attendees asking about the applicability of social business in their sized organizations. I realized that I had not made a distinction about the value as it relates to the size of the organization. But because we leverage social business techniques at IBM, I do often refer to our own use case, which may lead some to believe it is targeted for larger organizations. So I wanted to take this opportunity to address the question.
Many of the business pains addressed by social tools are present in companies with 10,000 individuals as well as companies with 100. So here is a quick check list (Disclaimer: This is my quick list that I might include in a conversation. I'm sure I probably missed some things, but that's what social is about and that's why we encourage members of this community to comment...so we can all improve):
If you answered "yes" to many of these questions, your company is a solid candidate for social business solutions. But be advised, some companies have enough business friction from just one of these items that they can make major business advances by making the transformation to social solutions.
In some ways I think the smaller companies may have an advantage. In a social business the culture of the organization is a primary factor. I've worked in companies of all sizes and I've observed that smaller organizations can adopt cultural changes more rapidly than their larger counterparts. In the case of social business impact, this can have significant payback for these organizations. And with user based licensing, the price of the solution is not prohibitive for small organizations.
Also consider the
earlier definition of constituents. You may have a small
organization, but your business activities and related conversations
can span a large audience. Think about how you can include them in
your social network. Consider your business partners,
sub-contractors, suppliers, dealers, and even customers. How might
their inclusion in your social network impact your business
relationship? How might your social leadership serve as a differentiator in securing and maintaining your business relationship?
If you have questions or ideas on this topic, I would encourage you to post them as comments to this blog entry. If you are not already a member, you will need to register, but the registration process is quick and easy. I and your fellow social community members deeply appreciate your contribution.
For those involved in the Collaboration Forum 2011 we held in Helsinki, thank you for your interest and investment in time today. I've posted the presentation from my keynote in my files area. Please use it freely in your organization and let me know how it goes.
So remember, even if you are a small company, you should Get Social. Do Business.
Jacques Pavlenyi 1000002W2A email@example.com | | Tags:  basf social technology review ibm business press | 0 Comments | 1,728 Visits
IBM has experimented with using social software to promote collaboration within its own workforce of 400,000. Now it has distilled the resulting insights to create Lotus Connections, the first enterprise social software suite to reach the market.
Martha Mealy 120000F9TQ firstname.lastname@example.org | | Tags:  social-business for-executives for-it | 0 Comments | 1,841 Visits
MIT's Technology Review published a quick read this morning 'Experimenting on Themselves' describing some of the ways we crowd source new concepts for software. One internal effort where we can share and provide feedback is our Technology Adoption Program, or what we fondly refer to as 'TAP.' John Rooney described TAP in the article like this:
"TAP hosts a variety of projects, from early tests of planned commercial products to tools and plug-ins designed by employees in their spare time. "Many things enter TAP without a specific agenda," Rooney says. IBM then looks at how people embrace and adopt the projects, seeing them through a life cycle that can lead to broader deployment if early indicators suggest value."
While I have not contributed assets, I have used several of the offerings on TAP and provided feedback and ratings. I like having this early view of what sort of product ideas are forming within IBM and knowing that my input as a potential end user is valued and contributes to the success of the products that 'graduate' from TAP and that I might help market like IBM Connections. [A short personal note: My dad went to MIT and I remember when I was young leafing through the Technology Review when it came in the mail. Sort of closes a family circle for me whenever I see the product I now work on mentioned there.]
Another example of crowd-sourcing, this time with external audiences, is our use of Jams. We just recently hosted a Social Business Jam. This effort helped us gain insights into what our customers and partners consider the key elements of a social business. This is a good example of how we used social business practices to better understand how we can help our customers become social businesses. Makes my head spin a bit. :^). I am looking forward to the results of the Jam.