Louis Richardson 120000HRWE firstname.lastname@example.org | | Tags:  social_business | 0 Comments | 2,042 Visits
Several years back, my wife and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary (we're now at 33...I can't believe she still puts up with me). Anyway, in preparation for the event, I was shopping for a new diamond ring. I mentioned this to a co-worker and he said, “I know a guy who knows a guy”. Many of you might think this lead to some shady deal out of the trunk of some guy's car. But it actually lead me to a small legitimate store owner, two states away, who had an amazing business model focused on customer satisfaction. The ring was awesome, my wife was thrilled, and now “I know a guy”.
Most of us at one time or another have said (or thought) this simple phrase. It just means, I can't answer your question (or meet your need), but I know someone else...who I know they can't answer your question...but they know someone who can.
You can see the number of “connections” that takes to be able to leverage something like this. In the business world it happens all the time. We see these inquiries go out using email blasts to broad audiences and the eventual forward of a forward of some question.
At IBM, we live as a social business...one that focuses on the individual, yet leverages communities, content and the conversation involved in doing business. As individuals, we have “profile” pages that tell about ourselves and what's going on in our network. On these pages I can post my activities as well as others can post to my “board”.
Not long ago, I noticed a post to my board from a co-worker. It was a technical question and for anyone who knows me, I tend to stay closer to the business side than the technical side. But I also noticed that someone else had seen the post and responded to the question...someone with the technical knowledge to do so.
My co-worker knew that “I would know a guy who knows a guy”. He knew I didn't know the answer, but he also knew that I had a network of contacts that would know. So...he posted it on my board and he got his response in several minutes.
Instead of sending me an email...knowing I didn't know. And then hoping I would forward it to a target audience that might know. And then waiting for a response from them. He just asked his question to me knowing that others (with more skill and knowledge than I) would be listening and help.
Brilliant use of social that can only be accomplished if you take a person-focused view. With such a system, you can know a guy who knows a guy...
* Please excuse the use of “guy”. Most of the good answers come from “gals”...I know that...which is why I've been married for 33 years.
Martha Mealy 120000F9TQ email@example.com | | Tags:  social_business business-value | 0 Comments | 1,026 Visits
IBM's recent collaboration with InformationWeek has produced a host of great assets describing the business value of social software for organizations. Visit the Brainyard to see these examples below as well as others.