Unless you suffer from a strong myopia, you should have noticed that 2008 big thing was microblogging, embodied by his majesty Twitter. It didn’t take a lot of time until twitter clones for internal company use, like Yammer, start to appear. Soon legacy vendors started to offer their own twitter like. In other cases, the ‘status’ indicator does the job : whatever the name is, the logic remains the same.
So, will it work or not ?
As I already mentioned here, whatever we can think, popular succes not systematically involving corporate success, and the majority not being always right, there are successes that can’t be ignored. One can either be fan or sceptical, but saying nothing is happening would be a fault.
As in many cases when the discussion comes to tools, I have no clear cut opinion. Tools are only worth what their usages are worth… so it depends why, where, whith whom and when. Failure for some, success for others. And in five years ? Perhaps it will be a mainstream tool. Anyway, the tool by itself won’t hurt, in the worst case it will join the library of the unused tools, in the best case some will try how to make an efficient use.
But I’m sure culture will play its role. Of course it already does for all social tools but, according to me, it will be more important for micro-blogging. I recently read something about a concept I didn’t know : the hierarchical distance index. Our companies and our society are marked by a high hierarchical distance [NB : I’m french] what less true for anglo-saxon countries. Each exchange supposes a dominant and a dominated, what is like a parent to child relation but the kind of conversations that take place on such tools are rather “adult to adult” ones, what supposes a weak hierarchical distance.
It the use of such tools inside companies seems unavoidable to me, whether it would be intensive or moderate, I’m sure it will not come from France or similar minded countries. It will be interesting to see what will happen in case of multicultural teams. In five years many twitter addicts will have become managers and the question will be solved, we’ll experience what we already experienced with instant messaging.
A not very useful post since I’m sure this is ver far from being a concern for anybody in any company.