« Under the bill, a private, for-profit business would be permitted to incorporate as a “Benefit Corporation,” with the stated corporate purpose of serving a general or specific public benefit (as defined in the bill). The Benefit Corporation is essentially a hybrid form which permits a for-profit corporation to exist for primarily public or social benefit corporate purposes (previously reserved to non-profit entities), rather than exclusively for the purpose of maximizing shareholder profit. «
Under current corporate laws and judicial precedents in all fifty states, directors and officers of a for-profit corporation have a primary fiduciary duty to maximize profit for shareholders. After signature of the new Benefit Corporation law by Governor Cuomo, this will change for those New York businesses that organize as “Benefit Corporations” and meet the requirements of the law
“Benefit Corporations require companies to have a legal responsibility to stakeholders as well as shareholders so they can have a positive impact on their surrounding communities
the purpose to create general public benefit shall be a limitation on the other purposes of the benefit corporation, and shall control over any inconsistent purpose of the benefit corporation.”
“Specific public benefit,” as defined in the bill, includes:
(1) “providing low-income or underserved individuals or communities with beneficial products or services; (2) promoting economic opportunity for individuals or communities beyond the creation of jobs in the normal course of business; (3) preserving the environment; (4) improving human health; (5) promoting the arts, sciences or advancement of knowledge; (6) increasing the flow of capital to entities with a public benefit purpose; and (7) the accomplishment of any other particular benefit for society or the environment.”
« Another obstacle to the impact economy’s expansion came crumbling down earlier this week when New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed legislation creating a legal structure for social enterprises in his state.
The bill allows corporations to organize themselves as Benefit Corporations, for-profit entities that have a specific social mission. It had languished for several months on the governor’s desk until a spate of late-year legislation was completed, but passed New York’s divided legislature unanimously. »
The law mandates that company directors consider not just bottom-line profit, but also their business’ social and environmental impact, as they make governance decisions. Without the new framework, businesses seeking to combine profit-making with good works face potential legal challenges, difficulty attracting capital and thorny issues around how to sell or scale their firms.
Now, the biggest challenge is to induce ever-larger and more varied companies to adopt the governance framework. Coen Gilbert hopes to see more startups and established companies taking advantage of the legal change, and perhaps even larger public companies.
Social Business Predictions for 2012
« It’s fair to say that in 2011, social pervaded a truly wide swath of territory in terms of business capabilities. While social reconceptions of traditional business functions began showing signs of some maturity in select areas (especially social marketing and internal collaboration), strong early adoption was also a hallmark of a few quite recent developments, in particular Social CRM. »
Analytics and business intelligence (BI) becomes standard fare. Making sense of the endless flow of conversations, inside and outside of the organization requires smart, effective filters. It also needs a way to analyze the giant haystack to derive business significant insight
getting to ROI means getting to the information that matters inside time windows that matter to make business decisions and guide strategic activity.
Gamification doesn’t happen, yet. Adding game mechanics to social business through leaderboards, competition-driven activities, and via other game-based engagement mechanisms has a very bright future in my opinion
Capable offerings either won’t be ready or mature enough for it to be significant in 2012; perhaps in 2013 but it will happen
Social intranets struggle forward, social business processes don’t. Those overhauling their intranets to make them more social have had a long, hard time of it.
This discussion was sparked by Laurie Buczek this year and was discussed widely by the Enterprise 2.0 community, with a general consensus that while general purpose, open-ended social media was the right direction (and is vital for emergent outcomes), a more direct route to value capture is needed. It’s now increasingly believed that high impact results will come most directly from integrating social business into daily work processes on the ground.
Internal and external social business efforts blur, but remain distinct
In 2012, community management will get the respect it deserves on the enterprise-side and become a first class citizen as a strategic social business capability. I also expect that training and certification for this vital function will also mature significantly.
Social business budgets go up another level. This year’s average social business budget, while somewhat larger than last years, will climb up another significant notch as social business become more prevalent across the the organization. As more dedicated staff are required and the social business unit becomes more common, expect a respectable increase, on the order of 50% or more in the average social business budget, especially if the economy starts to mend
Given that the latest version of Jive put social apps front and center in many large companies, we’ll likely find out by the end of 2012 if this is a primary way that workers will integrate their core business activities with social networking.
The early days of social media attracted highly creative types that sometimes thrived on lack of structure and analysis. Today, even social business, particularly in the marketing arena, requires serious number crunching, quantitative analysis, and the ability to derive insights from the resulting business intelligence. While creativity is perhaps more valued now than ever, the analytic and scientific approach is moving into the fore as well from tools and frameworks to services and methodologies.
« Four years ago, we began a study into the future of people management with our report, €˜Managing tomorrow’s people €“ the future of work 2020′, which explained how globalism, technology, and sociopolitical and demographic changes would influence the way businesses operate in the future. »
« Certaines entreprises songent à limiter l’accès de leurs collaborateurs à internet ou aux médias sociaux, estimant qu’ils affectent leur productivité. Cela pourrait bien s’avérer… contre-productif, à en juger par cette étude décoiffante du géant américain Cisco.
à€ l’en croire, plus question de recruter de jeunes talents sans leur laisser une liberté totale en la matière. »
Le tiers des étudiants et jeunes employés de moins de 30 ans affirment que, pour accepter un job, ils accordent plus d’importance à la liberté d’utilisation des réseaux sociaux et de choix des appareils mobiles plutôt qu’au salaire proposé
Entre 40 % et 45 % des jeunes interrogés disent même que, s’ils disposent d’une totale liberté technologique, ils veulent bien être moins bien payés.
Deux sur trois (64 %) aborderaient d’ailleurs franchement la question lors d’un entretien d’embauche et le quart (24 %) en font un facteur-clé de leur décision d’accepter ou non un jo
Plus de la moitié (55 %) des étudiants et plus encore d’utilisateurs (62 %) affirment qu’ils ne pourraient vivre sans l’internet.
Rien d’étonnant, dès lors, que quatre étudiants sur cinq exigent que leur futur employeur leur laisse le choix des appareils à utiliser dans le cadre professionnel.
considèrent comme tout à fait normal de pouvoir accéder aux réseaux sociaux et aux sites web de leur choix quand ils le souhaitent et, si nécessaire, à partir des terminaux de leur société.
Au final, on ne s’étonnera pas d’apprendre qu’un tiers des jeunes considèrent comme un droit €“ et non un privilège €“ le fait de pouvoir travailler à distance avec des horaires flexibles.
Cerise sur le gteau : sept étudiants sur dix estiment qu’il n’est plus nécessaire de se rendre régulièrement au bureau, sauf pour les réunions importantes. Leur productivité, estime la majorité, s’en trouvera améliorée.
« Shifts in global, societal, technological, economic, and socio-political trends will shape the future of work. The culmination of these distinct trends across multiple facets of societal and technological advancement will lead to an increased use of game mechanics in the workplace of the future. Over the last several years, several Microsoft teams have deployed “productivity games” to improve software engineering processes through the application of game mechanics. Augmenting a business process with game mechanics has led to significant productivity improvements. These lessons support the notion that games can €“ and will €“ be an important component of the workplace of the future. »
Focusing either on expanding skills in role, or “organizational citizenship behaviors” – OCB’s – that require core skills €“ is the best way to ensure the success of a productivity game. Player motivation is a key component of the success of a productivity game.
Gaming, play, and fun offer a tremendous opportunity to engage the “gamer generation” as they enter the workforce. The spirit of play, fun, and creativity are key elements of a successful, innovative organization €“ and yet, they are getting lost in the high tech, high pressure, highly reactive world. The future looks to be a world where “playing at work” is not an oxymoron €“ or a demerit at performance review time.
“Perhaps it’s called the end of the world because it’s the end of the games”
The basic goal of a productivity game is to motivate and entice participants to complete productive work in order to participate in the game
The goal was to appeal to the altruism of players and for them to view their participation in the Microsoft Lync 2010 beta program as a win-win (and €“win!) opportunity that provides a fun experience for participants, generates actionable feedback to improve Microsoft Lync 2010 – and helps disaster relief agencies with much-needed donations.
“Is a good cause and is a nice bonus for helping out internally – we get to help out externally too.”
Upon conclusion of the program, 97% of the participants said they would participate in another beta program. In previous beta programs, these numbers range from 50-75%.
The short answer is that collaboration is dangerous. Inherently, collaboration says something is happening outside of one’s immediate control. This by itself seems threatening to some, but there are several specific reasons why it appears dangerous: »
Most people have built their careers €” perhaps even their identity €” on being the expert. They don’t like feeling ignorant
Role and responsibilities in the collaboration space tend not to be hierarchical; they are often fluid, changing from phase to phase of the work.
that means organizations spend more time in the messy and time-consuming up-front process of designing solutions that’ll work.
For collaboration to work, information is rarely left in any silo but is shared and often combined in unexpected ways to reframe problems. For some people, this can mean information overload.
Knowing how to debate the tradeoffs between many viable options means knowing how to argue with each other about the business in more open and visible ways.
Often, collaboration happens on top of other work. Participants are already plenty busy with their « day job » and the new project may be especially stressful because of this. Until the problems that any collaboration project is aimed to fix gets solved, a collaboration project can often be overwhelming.
In that way, collaboration is often used synonymously with teamwork or democratic exchange. It shouldn’t be. The goal isn’t about feeling good; it is about business results
Leaders have less visibility into who did what. If things go right, they worry about rewarding the wrong people. If things go wrong, they complain about no longer having a single « throat to choke. »
Research shows it works best for organizations that need to solve problems across different parts of the business, where cross-pollination of ideas improves the output, where speed to market is crucial, and where getting people to co-own the solution will create more velocity in the execution of the work.
organize and present course material to enable students to learn at their own pace
feature interactivity, online laboratories and student-to-student communication
allow for the individual assessment of any student’s work and allow students who demonstrate their mastery of subjects to earn a certificate of completion awarded by MITx
MIT expects that this learning platform will enhance the educational experience of its on-campus students, offering them online tools that supplement and enrich their classroom and laboratory experiences.
MIT also expects that MITx will eventually host a virtual community of millions of learners around the world.
An open infrastructure will facilitate research on learning technologies and also enable learning content to be easily portable to other educational platforms that will develop. In this way the infrastructure will improve continuously as it is used and adapted.
« Social intranet is a hot topic. With the rise of social software, the next step to the enterprise social nirvana is the intranet. Hopefully, nobody is considering Facebook as a model anymore (like in “our new intranet will be like Facebook“), but there is still some confusion in what “social” stands for in the enterprise. »
A social intranet is network that uses social software to securely share any part of an organization’s information within that organization“. Nice, but this restrict the vision to software, and can bring endless debate about secure sharing.
Information. To be social, an intranet must allow information to easily flow vertically and horizontally, and allow employees to express themselves in various ways
Knowledge. Content repositories are way too statics, they must evolve to a more democratic and flexible way to capitalize on knowledge (enterprise wikis) and to spread it (social learning).
Communities. I assume you are already convinced of the importance of enterprise social networks. But simply providing a ESN to your employees will not allow communities to emerge, you will have to enable them through stimulation and moderations.
Collaboration. I also assume you are aware of the benefits of online collaborative workspaces, but one can do much more with socialized project management solutions
Business processes and data. Last but not least, software allowing employees to produce, collect, structure, analyze and publish data is key to wider adoption. You will easily find pockets of users willing to participate in “social experiments”, but to rally EVERY employee, you will have to include business applications and processes in your internal social platform.
the best social intranet is not the one providing the most social features, but the one which ties the most business processes and data to employee’s social behavior
And while your working at it, bear in mind that collaboration does not fit into your enterprise’s boundaries: you will also have to include partners, sub-contractors, providers€¦ to enhance collaboration within this ecosystem
« Sur fond de crise économique, de mondialisation et de nouvelles organisations du travail, la santé mentale des travailleurs se dégrade. Tel est le constat de l’Organisation de coopération et de développement économiques (OCDE) pointé dans une étude publiée le mercredi 14 décembre, « Mal être au travail ? Mythes et réalités sur la santé mentale au travail « . »
« Societies have never been good at moving from one big tech-induced change to another. The industrial revolution wrought havoc on populations. Production lines were thought to dehumanise people, and modern agriculture is still vilified, instead of being celebrated. And people now worry that technology will drive us towards some singularity where people are no longer required. »
We are talking mass unemployment, people replaced by machines, old ways and conventions abandoned, history and tradition rendered worthless
Many cite oppressive and excessively demanding management regimes. And certainly the evidence is that the ratio of managers to active contributors and material expenditure has grown excessively, as depicted in this graph for one first-world nation.
: how big can the management population become before a company collapses, and how big can government become before a country collapses under the non-contributory bureaucratic weight?
We might have expected technology to reduce the number of managers everywhere, but the number just seems to keep growing
As a general principle, to be more creative, efficient and competitive, we need far less management in companies, government, and indeed in our electronic systems, and not more.
« Un article récent de Jonathan Miles sur son blog intitulé “A group of would be friends” (« Un groupe d’amis potentiels »), dont l’origine est partie d’une discussion sur twitter, s’interroge sur les raisons pour lesquelles les gens ne s’engagent pas dans l’apprentissage. Jane Hart pense que ce phénomène vient du fait que les gens ne sont pas intéressés par leur travail ; par conséquent, comment pourraient-ils être intéressés par l’apprentissage ? On a demandé à Jonathan de raconter son histoire, qui correspond au propos de son post. C’est un bon exemple d’une communauté qui s’épanouit dès lors qu’elle se construit sur l’humain. Et si Jane a tout à fait raison, sa réponse n’est qu’une partie du problème. »
On pourrait se demander si les comportements parentaux, les normes sociales, les systèmes scolaires (merci à Roger Schank pour avoir examiné ce point !) et tout ce qui tourne autour de la vie des jeunes ne conspirent pas en vue de refouler la capacité à produire des idées neuves et originales et à concevoir l’extraordinaire.
Si une personne a été habituée au non-apprentissage et au fait que notre environnement ne fait pas la distinction entre ceux qui apprennent et ceux qui ne le font pas, qu’est ce qui peut la motiver pour que cette aptitude innée fondamentale resurgisse ? Si la personne qui apprend reçoit la même récompense que celle qui « se repose sur ses lauriers », à quoi bon apprendre?
il est important que les organisations, leur direction générale, leurs Ressources Humaines, ainsi que le département Formation, trouvent les moyens d’encourager leurs employés dans l’apprentissage et donc dans l’amélioration de leurs performances.
Jane déclare assez justement que si les gens ne s’intéressent pas, ils n’apprennent pas. En effet, la majorité d’entre nous a déjà été confrontée à plusieurs reprises à ce que Jonathan décrit : même les bons programmes échouent car les gens ne s’engagent pa
Dans un contexte où les gens n’apprennent pas et se moquent de leur travail, quelque chose doit se produire afin de changer la situation et d’empêcher une détérioration lente et sans retour des capacités des individus et de l’organisation
Cependant, si ces outils ne sont pas utilisés dans un environnement dans lequel l’individu se sent à l’aise et motivé pour les essayer puis les adopter, pour appliquer les connaissances qu’ils peuvent générer, alors c’est comme avoir un magnifique satellite spatial sans fusée pour le mettre en orbite. à‡a n’a aucune valeur.
La culture organisationnelle, les plateformes d’apprentissage, l’accessibilité au matériel et aux solutions, l’assistance technique, l’encouragement individuel et une stimulation novatrice des communautés sont autant de taches qui incombent aux managers du service Formation dans ce nouveau monde passionnant.
« You have to admire CEO Thierry Breton of Atos for taking a very public stance on the issue, telling ABC, “We are producing data on a massive scale that is fast polluting our working environments and also encroaching into our personal lives,” he goes on to say, “At [Atos] we are taking action now to reverse this trend, just as organizations took measures to reduce environmental pollution after the industrial revolution.” »
Imagine a customer sending an email into an Atos imposed, email black hole, where the customer is seeking answers to their questions. The Atos employee then cuts and pastes the email into the Atos intranet and hours later the Atos employee presumably receives an answer from another employee. The Atos employee then cut and pastes the answer back into the original email and sends it back to the customer.
Remember Breton’s environmental pollution analogy? Ironically, this situation creates even more digital pollution and human capital waste
Breton’s policy depends on accepting the false premise that email is inherently tied to information overload and that by killing it the problem will rectify itself. In reality, it doesn’t matter which communication system you use, there will always be information overload if it isn’t managed properly.
The harsher view is that Atos is unable to effectively manage information and their executives are taking extreme, unproven measures to somehow control it.
I’m afraid Breton is confusing his information overload symptoms with its assumed cause: email. But email is not the cause, it’s only a vehicle for information.
The creators of these technologies recognize email for what it is, a simple yet powerful communication tool that is part of an effective social business.
What is interesting, however, is the fairly low estimates of actual adoption by Forrester, citing that only 12 percent of information workers are provided with enterprise social collaboration software, while just 8 percent of them use it once a week. This is one of the lowest estimates I’ve seen, especially given that Forrester has previously reported here on ZDNet that nearly a third, or 29%, of enterprise workers are using social tools this year.
However, this does underscore one major issue with tracking enterprise sales for social business: Sales of licenses or seats does not necessarily translate into adoption.
Being social requires long-term commitment, ongoing investment, and proactive work for as long as it takes place. This is not different really than cultivating any kind of human relationships; they either grow or they wane.
Better operating margins and market share gains are all closely correlated with companies that are distinctly better networked socially. But more intriguingly, market leadership was generally not correlated with being more socially networked.
Lesson: Organizations should prepare for the dislocation such major changes usually entail. This means proactive change management, cultural adaptation, and willingness to tolerate experiments to find the way forward.
Lesson: One of the tough lessons of social business is that though the technologies make connectedness, sharing, and transparency dramatically easier, people have to want it. Many organizations will have to so some soul-searching and blunt self-assessments if they are to achieve the benefits that are now being reported.
« The data keeps coming in: The sale of social business software continues to rise and is forecast to continue rising for years. But does that translate into adoption? New data shows that while adoption is slowing, it’s indeed happening, with real benefits. If so, what are the most useful lessons we can take away from the early pioneers? »
» The JWT’s trendspotters recently included The Rise of Shared Value in their Top Ten trends for 2012:
“The Rise of Shared Value: Rather than simply doling out checks to good causes, some corporations are starting to shift their business models, integrating social issues into their core strategies. The aim is to create shared value, a concept that reflects the growing belief that generating a profit and achieving social progress are not mutually exclusive goals.” »
A big part of the problem lies with companies themselves, which remain trapped in an outdated approach to value creation that has emerged over the past few decades. They continue to view value creation narrowly, optimizing short-term financial performance in a bubble while missing the most important customer needs and ignoring the broader influences that determine their longer-term success.
« We are present again at one of those great unravelings €” just like after World War I, World War II and the cold war. But this time there was no war. All of these states have been pulled down from within €” without warning. Why? «
The old system of €˜command and control’ €” using carrots and sticks €” to exert power over people is fast being replaced by €˜connect and collaborate’ €” to generate power through people.”
“As power shifts to individuals,” argues Seidman, “leadership itself must shift with it €” from coercive or motivational leadership that uses sticks or carrots to extract performance and allegiance out of people to inspirational leadership that inspires commitment and innovation and hope in people.”
The role of the leader now is to get the best of what is coming up from below and then meld it with a vision from above.
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