Summary : another book on enterprise social networks ? Yes but this one avoids many traps and commonplaces. “The Collaborative organization” is a very practical and documented guide on the whys and hows of your implementation strategy. No overpromise, a lucid look and relevant analysis. A book any project manager should have.
I’m often mistrustful when I start reading a new book on enteprise social networks. Often selling technological bliss, maniac angelism, religious positivsm and making readers see everything through the paradigm of communities supposed to solve any problem in the organization, they often left us wanting more.
So I started reading The Collaborative Organization: A Strategic Guide to Solving Your Internal Business Challenges Using Emerging Social and Collaborative Tools, by Jacob Morgan, with apprehension. And I turned the last page satisfied and relieved because any question a business trying to implement a social networking platform could ask is dealt with in the book.
First because it’s rather a book on the problems businesses need to solve and how social technologies can help than a book on social networking or social business. That’s not the same thing. Jacob’s approach is a practical one and I appreciate. The goal is not to make you love social business and social networks but make them purposeful.
So it starts with assessing the current situation. As a matter of fact who doesn’t see the problems is unlikely to want to solve them or solve them in a relevant fashion.
Then it talks, a little, about technology. Not too much and well. Enough to understand that despite of what many still say, not all tools cover all needs and that one should clearly know his stakes before choosing one. Enough to understand that tools are only there to serve work practices and that if one don’t understand why such or such practice is good from an organization standpoint, there a few chances any tool will be of any help. Readers will also appreciate the tone of the author : no high level socio-economical theory but facts, questions and the need to find the right answer.
Then comes the how. Jacob does not fall into the trap of saying that it will be easy and that he has the answer to any question. On the other and he exhaustively covers nearly all potential concerns and questions businesses may have. He explains the whys and hows, share well narrated and clearly understandable examples and tries to give the reader enough insight to make his own decision instead of stating a kind of law or absolute principle. Many of his case studies are deep with long interviews with the stakeholders. Communication, change management, KPIs, Governance, ROI…nothing’s left undealt.
It ends with a very realistic bonus chapter from Andrew McAfee on the extent of the coming changes that do not avoid the concerns it raises and how hard it is to anticipate it all.
In one sentence : it’s a clear, practical, pragmatic and easy-to-read book. It perfectly matches the concerns of any project manager trying to make his way and find his own answers. A book that brings the right answers to the questions practitioners have.
Exactly what readers expect.
Solve problems, seize opportunities, and ignite innovation with a powerful collaborative technology business strategy
"In today's global economy collaboration is key to building a connected, engaged, and sustainable organization. Jacob's book guides leaders on how to develop strategies to build this type of a 'Collaborative Organization.’”
”Everyone knows that the future of work is engaged employees who collaborate to get things done but struggle to figure out how to get there. Jacob’s book is a valuable strategic guide to help leaders deploy emerging collaboration technologies and strategies to ‘get there.’”
“ManpowerGroup recognizes that in the Human Age, it is people that power the world of work and people are capable of much more when they collaborate to achieve their goals. Leaders looking to build this type of a Collaborative Organization should read this book."
"A valuable strategic guide for organizations looking to tap the power of new social and collaborative tools to create more connected, engaged, and successful organizations."
"This book gets to the very real issues that companies of all sizes, in all industries, continue to face. Social and collaborative tools are certainly part of the picture, but Morgan goes beyond this to look at true enterprisewide collaboration that is inextricably tied to business strategy."
"The rise of social and collaborative technologies is driving a new type of business conversation. Morgan provides valuable insights on how companies can evaluate today's options and implement successful strategies and solutions to seize this opportunity."
"Most business leaders understand how critical collaborative tools are to the success of their companies. What they need now is a guide based on hard data and practical experiences that shows how to put those tools to work. Morgan fills that need with this book."
“The value of collaboration is intuitive: we accomplish more, faster, better when we work as a team and play well with others. But collaboration at the scale and pace of modern enterprise isn’t simple, easy, or straightforward: harnessing the power of organizational collaboration requires the right mix of art and science, and an expert coach would sure be helpful. The Collaborative Organization provides a plan, real-world lessons, insights, and expertise born of broad-based research tempered by the rich and diverse experience of early pioneers.”
"A fresh, honest, and actionable guide to internal collaboration. The Collaborative Organization delivers practical insight into what it takes to successfully launch, maintain, and evolve the initiatives that are designed to address collaboration challenges unique to your business. A valuable read."
About the Book:
While there are few guarantees in business these days, there is one simple truth we can all agree upon: Companies that embrace social and collaborative technologies and strategies stand the best chances of succeeding; those who don’t will fail.
Still, the question remains: How do you get the most out of these world-changing tools and how do you develop strategies to succeed?
Jacob Morgan, the cofounder of Chess Media Group, says that you have to start where it all begins--with your employees--and in The Collaborative Organization, he shows how to do it.
In this nuts-and-bolts guide, Morgan provides the information, insight, and strategic framework you need to use emergent collaborative software behind your company's firewall to solve business problems, unearth new opportunities, and drive innovation.
The Collaborative Organization takes you from the starting gate to the finish line of creating and executing a profit-driving, growthfocused strategy that leverages the power of social and collaborative technologies and strategies in your company. Learn all there is to know about:
Dozens of case studies and contributions from companies from around the world, such as the Children's Hospital, the U.S. Department of State, UPS, Vanguard, and Pabst Brewing Co., clearly illustrate what works, what doesn't, and why.
Whether your company has 100 employees or 100,000, The Collaborative Organization gives you what you need to get everyone on board to foster lasting success and growth in today's uncertain but exciting business landscape.