One of the best resources for those interested in Social Business has to be the McKinsey Quarterly.
As many of you will know, McKinsey & Co are one of the most respected management consultancies around, and are involved in a significant volume of work with organisations around the world on Social Business and internal productivity. The McKinsey Global Institute produces a regular annual report into the use of Social Business – a must read for sure.
However, the reason for this post is to direct you to this interview with Don Tapscott where he describes why effective knowledge management within enterprises requires replacing e-mail with social media. Filmed in September 2012, Don does a great job of explaining how Social Business tools will revolutionise business in this decade, and how it should be approached differently from previous collaborative technologies.
(If you prefer to read these kinds of interviews, the transcript is also available).
I particularly like Don’s example of an organisation cancelling 80% of their meetings that were ‘informational’ by sharing the information online in place of the meeting.
Collaboration Matters believes that this Social Business ‘revolution’ is as significant as Don and others state, and are working with organisations to make massive gains in productivity through the shift from meetings and email into a much more efficient social strategy.
A Lotus Notes ad from the R5 days, circa 1999:
‘I am ready‘, ‘I am connected‘, ‘I am not alone‘, ‘The power to work the way you want‘, ‘Share work and ideas‘ and so on…
This was describing Collaboration, Messaging and Workflow software from 13 years ago, but could so easily be describing the impact of Social Media and Social Business tools (such as IBM Connections) today.
My goodness, Lotus Notes and Domino really was painting a vision of the future…
So I hear you cry, what is The Collaboration Diner?
Many of you, especially those in North America, will be aware of a rather famous 1942 painting by Edward Hopper known as ‘Nighthawks‘:
Painted soon after the attack at Pearl Harbour, the painting is thought to detail the alienation felt by those in a strange city, and the interaction, consolation and prospective relationships that could be found within the diners that were scattered on street corners throughout New York and other cities. Diner customers could ‘network’ with the few others in the physical location they inhabited.
In 2003, Wired magazine commissioned comic artist Josh Ellingson to bring the diner situation up to date in the face of the emergence of free wi-fi, ubiquitous mobile devices and laptops:
Once again, the diner or coffee shop had become the place where relaxation and re-connecting could be combined, but this time connections were as likely to be with those hundreds or thousands of miles away. In 2003, it was likely that this would have been via a relatively small group of friends or colleagues that the individual was in regular contact with.
Now bring the situation up to the modern day. Social and Mobile dominate. Almost every individual carries at least a mobile phone, most a smartphone and many more than one device. Multiple social networks are reachable from these devices, personal, professional and organisational sites provide a constant connection to friends, family, colleagues, customers and partners. Business is as likely to be carried out in a diner in a strange city as at one’s own desk.
However, the diner is still a useful metaphor for the meeting place, for the clash of cultures, the possibility of accidents and incidents leading to passionate discourse and idea-sparking conversations.
Look out for future posts detailing what was involved, why it was such an innovative concept, and what discussions took place there. One thing’s for sure, tech trade shows have never seen anything like it!
Marco Arment, creator of Instapaper, writes on the correct way to deal with competition:
Reacting well to competition requires critical analysis of your own product and its shortcomings, and a complete, open-minded understanding of why people might choose your competitors.
They’re not fanboys. They’re not brainwashed by “marketing”. Your competitors’ customers aren’t passing on your product because they’re stupid or irrational.
They’re choosing your competitors for good reasons, and denying the existence of such good reasons will only ensure that your product never overcomes them.
He goes on to discuss why Microsoft’s recent reaction to the threat of iOS is more constructive than Google’s.
It’s a fascinating reflection, and bears great relevance to the way in which we see some Collaboration and Social Business vendors react.
Customers are not irrational, users are not stupid. If you want them to choose to buy your solution, or even more importantly, to desire to use it, you had better go focus your attention and resources on making yours significantly better than the opposition, not on dissing the opposition or those that buy or use their products!
There are pioneers, visionaries and thought leaders inside companies, who can see where their respective organisations will need to get to in terms of collaboration over the next 3 years
The Collaboration Garden is where you can join focused communities and engage with people facing similar challenges such as – Adoption strategy, Collaborative Decision Making, and Talent Management.
Stay ahead of the curve and learn how to leverage Social Business to deliver a more connected, innovative and engaged workforce.
There are 3 things the Collaborative garden offers you in terms of managing the change that Social Business dictates:
- Follow thought leaders and their discussions on specific areas of Social Business
- Put a question into the Community that relates to a specific problem you are trying to solve e.g. patchy user adoption
- Stay up to date on breaking or emerging trends e.g. the infographic CV
Access to the Collaborative Garden is by invite only. Please contact us for more information.
The simple truth is that is you invest in an enterprise Social Business platform and it has been properly implemented and tested, then there should be very little day to day support required over and above your normal IT infrastructure processes.
Accordingly we charge for technical support on a T&M basis with agreed credits that our clients draw down on and which are reviewed by their account manager each quarter and adjusted accordingly
In the early days of a platform deployment there is very often a mission critical need to have a high degree of vigilance over platform usage an adoption – what is working and what is not working. Accordingly we offer a hands on service support based on analytics and then consultancy to address issues or to spot and exploit emerging trends. This service is customised to suit client skills, culture and resource.
Face it…the content-centric approach to knowledge management and collaboration is broken.
Fortunately, there is a different perspective that your business can take. Like the view considered by Copernicus, consider that your knowledge management doesn’t revolve around content, but rather around people. After all, people are the source of the content. Knowledge doesn’t originate from the paper, but from the person. The content that you have within your organization is a result of people documenting and sharing their knowledge and ideas. And it’s the consumers, the people who read and use this content that validates it. So let’s think about centering on the source of the light…your people.
Great blog post by Loius Richardson of IBM making an important distinction between content-centric collaboration (e.g. Sharepoint) and people-centric collaboration (e.g. Connections). Go read it.
Youtube: Lotus software can help you locate and collaborate with the right experts at the right time
How Lotus software (Connections, Quickr, Sametime and Unified Telephony) can help you get the job done, whether it’s responding to an RFI or fighting the squirrel menace!
Whilst the production values of this video are not up to those of some Lotus demos published to YouTube (e.g. those featuring Ron Sebastian or Suzanne Minassian), I really like this one as it ties together a number of the products together into an integrated solution that solves a common business problem, and best of all, actually shows them in use… Nice one.
There’s an interesting post comparing the IBM/Lotus and Microsoft collaboration strategies and product line-ups over at the AIIM blog:
IBM and Microsoft both offer quite good collaboration functionality. Which do you go with? That depends on your organization’s approach to messaging and IT infrastructure.
If you have decided that your collaboration strategy will focus on a suite approach as opposed to best-of-breed technologies, then you will most likely take a hard look at IBM and Microsoft to meet your needs. Both IBM and Microsoft have produced a suite of integrated technologies that deliver a collaboration functionality that addresses all four of the collaboration pillars. Microsoft delivers collaboration functionality in a combination of Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007/ Exchange and IBM delivers the functionality in a combination of Quickr, Connections, and Lotus Notes/Domino.
I particularly liked the piece as it collates each vendor’s propositions into what it terms ‘the four pillars of collaboration‘:
• The Messaging Pillar enables teams and individuals to communicate and manage their interactions in a formal, auditable manner. This includes email, calendaring, scheduling, and contact management.
• The Real-Time Collaboration Pillar is more focused on ad-hoc communications providing the team with the capability to easily initiate a real-time conversation between one or more individuals. This includes Instant Messaging, Web Conferencing, and Unified Communications capabilities
• The Team Collaboration Pillar provides the content management services that collect, store, and manage the documents that are pertinent to the team’s activity. This can include document management, ad-hoc workflow, and basic project management.
• The final Pillar, Social Networking, represents the newest pillar in the collaboration house. This pillar provides a way for teams and individuals to share knowledge not only within the team, but to be able to reach out to an extended group for their input and feedback. Technologies in the pillar can include Blogs, Wikis, RSS, and Tagging.
It’s always a challenge to articulate how the individual products relate to each other, particularly Lotus Quickr and Connections, in a way that means something to non-technical folks. While these terms are by no means new, its good to find ways to segment and describe the different forms of collaboration that have proved successful for others…
Collaboration University welcomes guest speakers
Collaboration University is pleased to welcome back the Usual Suspects – Chris Miller, Carl Tyler, Warren Elsmore, Gab & Tim Davis, and the SNAPPS gang, but this year we have also invited some guest speakers to cover a few Lotus Connections topics…
Mitch Cohen from Colgate reprises his role as the guest alumni and customer speaker, where he will dazzle us with IBM Lotus Connections 2.5 deployment tips and best practices.
Stuart McIntyre of Collaboration Matters and author of just a few blogs will join us for a session on Connections 2.5 customization – including profiles, TDI and custom themes. This is in direct response to a CU 2008 alumni request I received a few weeks ago (the request was for the topics…sorry, Stuart!)
Kathleen McGivney, of we-go-way-back fame (Kat and I were co-authors on a QuickPlace Redbook 8 years ago!) and now a solo consultant will be designing some of our new format Quickr and Sametime labs, and joining us in Chicago to help run them.
Welcome to the gang, Mitch, Stuart and Kat!
More announcements and news about CU 2009 registration, topics and a brand new concept all coming in days…for more up-to-date information be sure to follow @CollabU on Twitter…
I am truly delighted and honoured to have been invited to speak at such a great event and with the team of Lotus luminaries that puts on the Collaboration University each year. I’m also really excited to be covering the new Connections 2.5 product in my session, delving into the myriad of options available for customisation and delivering tips and tricks on how make Connections really sing and dance in your environment.
As a reminder, Collaboration University is scheduled in Chicago from September 14-16, 2009 and in London from September 21-23, 2009. All the details are over on the Collaboration University site. I hope to see you there!