Collaboration in the Social Enterprise

Posted on August 20, 2012 by


From my vantage, I see a trend ..

Deep in the corporate wilderness, I’ve come upon an interesting scene: a cross-section of clients, coworkers and colleagues moving away from silo thinking and silo’d information flows.

Their destination? They’re heading towards the connected organization.  It’s a new, relatively unexplored place.  It’s where people choose to work closely together to solve problems, tapping the organic energy that emerges when teams of people collaborate.  We’ve been mired in productivity and innovation gridlock.  At last the Social Enterprise is coming into view.

Something had to change.  Perhaps this was it.

To say that organizations are flocking to social would be an overstatement. There’s been plenty of talk with little action. Yet I now see many taking steps to drive change in their organizations and they’re using social technology to get there. Road maps are being crafted. Pilots are being launched. Leaders are seeking new, innovation-making capabilities.

We’ve done more than a few deep dives in this space, starting when SMCHAT was new in 2009. Perhaps we arrived to the party a bit early. But in that time we’ve gained perspective.

I see four clear challenges that loom large as we come face to face with Social Enterprise adoption:

  • Q1. Building a Learning CULTURE – changing from hierarchy & control to a trust-based network that values learning & relationships; where do we begin? #orgdev #cdna #lrnchat
  • Q2. Work Processes that Enable FLOW – allowing insights to move freely across silos, a perennial challenge of #KMers; how do #infotech #CIO’s stop thinking in transactions? Can #custserv help?
  • Q3. Solutions Providing SPACE – virtual and physical spaces are needed for ideas to surface, mingle & grow; think collaboration hubs, surface area (@JHagel) & 20% white space
  • Q4. Tools that Develop VOICE – delivering Profiles (who) & Blogs (what & why) using tools like #SharePoint #Newsgator #JIVE & #Yammer … giving collaborators a personal brand & a voice.

In our 8/22 #SMCHAT at 1pET we’ll unpack each vector.  Then, on this blog and others, we’ll circle back, anxious to uncover more and ready to go deeper still.  Mastering any single vector will not be enough.

We’re about to change our workgroup paradigm … and that’s no small task.

Organizations are starting to connect the dots, realizing at last how much value remains stranded among people who would share willingly, if only they had a means.  More and more, they do. It’s time to get social.  Want to dive a bit deeper?  Here are some places to look:

Posted in: Collaboration, Trends