About cultural differences on intranets


intranetFollowing my quick synthesis of the report of best intranet practices, a few questions inspired by Jane McConnel and Razorfish people’s comments on both my french and english blogs.

– In wich ways cultural differences between US and European people may impact their perception and adoption of intranets. Despite the intranet maturity framework is an US-based model, it seems to me that it’s adapted to Europe too.

– When I say that portal is key in collaborative intranet’s success, can we consider it’s mainly an european vision? Is user’s maturity in terms of collaborative practices so different between our two countries that, in the US, people doesn’t need an efficient portal to understand what a collaborative intranet could bring? Or, at the opposite, US people are they more frightenened than us in the perspective of adopting such tools?

– Talking about culture, what I think the maturity framework actually misses is an managerial and human component: adopting a new kind of intranet supposes new social practices and a new kind of management because the intranet is supposed to be be the embodiment of the way people behave the ones with the others in the organization. For example a collaborative-driven intranet is a nonsense in a company where people are not used to collaborating. Considering this, I think an intranet model must include an “human side” talking about managerial practices, key success factors and brakes.

– Since we’re talking about management, can we think of making a parrallel between the intranat maturity framework and things like Management Maturity Models, in order to have guidelines not only to build intranets but also to build the organization that must go with. It also would allow to evaluate an intranet project not only considering techology and functionnalities but also the way it matches the organization’s culture. So doing the Framework would help us having a global view of key success factors in “how to make your intranet a success”, considering an intranet 2.0 needs to build an entreprise 2.0 with the social pratices it supposes. It may also be usefull to make companies understand we’re talking about a global projet wich also have an human side  and neglecting this side would cause a project failure… Also a good approach in an evangelization context, don’t you think?