My Crazy Prediction?

In September 2008 I made a prediction, that email as we know it today will no longer exist in 10 years time.

Read The Death Of Email by 2018

Will I be proved to be a:
or Fool?

Time Remaining:

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Disclaimer: The views expressed on stopthinksocial are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Oracle.
Strategic advice and experience on making the most of  being social in the workplace

Entries in social strategy (3)

Tuesday
Jan172012

Focus on the Easy Adopters, the Rest will Follow

Social adoption strategies are not easy to implement in ANY business, and if anyone tells you differently they are lying!

The reason?

How can you convince people to change their communication and collaboration processes and implement a new social business infrastructure, when in their eyes the current model is not broken?

Let's see if any of these arguments sound familiar to you...

"What is the ROI of 'Being Social in the Workplace' anyway?"

"Social? That means I need to learn even more tools huh?"

"So you want my workforce to spend all their time on Facebook?"

"I'm already social, I sent a tweet last year"

These are what we call Social Barriers, the human instinct blockers based on fear.

Overcoming the fear of change is not easy and yes it is a generation thing. The younger generation are entering business with a good knowledge and understanding of social without the added baggage of pre-defined traditional business processes. Adoption is therefore natural and unforced.

So how do you overcome these Social Barriers in the workplace?

Focus on the Easy Adopters, the rest will follow...

There are are couple of ways to face these Social Barriers, and deliver a social adoption strategy:

  1. Face them head on - provide use cases, and counter arguments to defend your position and show that 'Being Social' is nothing to be afraid of. Convince them that it will INCREASE the productivity of your workforce, IMPROVE the collaboration opportunities and STREAMLINE their communications
  2. Focus on the Easy Adopters, the rest will follow - work with those in the organisation who see the vision and are ready and willing to change. This will help you refine your social adoption strategy and create new Ambassador's. The more Ambassador's you have the easier the Social Barriers will come down

The latter is an approach I have had a lot of success with, which has also helped influence C-Level buy-in.

You could choose either of these approaches or you can do both in parallel, just don't be afraid to change tactics if you find an approach is not working for you.

Every business WILL go social, it's just a matter of when, and how you approach it...

Monday
Mar082010

Social Media: It's just a bunch of tools right?

Firstly, I would just like to announce that we have a new addition to the family Dylan James Christopher which is also the reason for the long break between my posts on my blog (he's only a few weeks old and I am blaming him already).

However, I am refreshed and back!

Ok, so over the weekend I realised that I have been having the same conversations over and over again with colleagues that Social Media is so much more than the technology. So I decided that I need to take a different approach to communicating this message.

So I have put together the following slideshare presentation to get the message across in a fun but clear way. Please let me know if I succeeded.....

Tuesday
Nov242009

The right way to approach change

I had an interesting discussion today with one of my social media change agents who is struggling to convince their team that a social business community is a much better solution for 100 people to communicate and collaborate than an email distribution list.

The response from the team is not an unusual response. So why were they struggling?

Two reasons:

1. Empowerment
To be an effective social media change agent you MUST to be empowered by the Sponsor to make the necessary changes to improve the overall efficiency and effectiveness of the team. In this case they were not, and they need to go back to the Sponsor to gain that empowerment and to have that communicated to the rest of the team.

2. Approach
The approach was wrong. The focus was on the removal of the email distribution list and to replace it with a social business community. It was a tool focused approach.

One of the earliest blog entries I read that really opened my eyes on how to approach a social media strategy was The POST Method from groundswell.

People, Objectives, Strategy, Technology.

Repeatedly I have seen people start a blog, or create a social business community because it is "the cool thing to do". A couple of months later they seem surprised when nobody is commenting on the blog or sharing / collaborating in the social business community.

What the social media change agent should have done is:

1) gain an understanding of the social capabilities of the group
2) be clear on what it is they wanted to achieve (i.e. what are their information flows - content, audience, sensitivity, frequency etc...) and identified any issues / challenges they wanted to overcome
3) plan how the group is to adopt any change in their information flows, including a clear communication strategy on how to transition from the old way of working to the new, and over what time period
4) identify the right technology based on the business needs

The end result is still the same - they need to implement a social business community, however the approach and reasoning is something even a hardened sceptic can follow and appreciate.

The tools are the enabler of the strategy, they do not define it!