Social Business: What Are Companies Really Doing?
Using the Past to Help Create the Future
When I heard about IBMâ€™s free iPad app on the history of math, Minds of Modern Mathematics, it reinforced my strong belief in why we must understand the roots of technology in our Twitter-driven world.
History places us in time. The computer has altered the human experience, and changed the way we work, what we do at play, and even how we think. A hundred years from now, generations whose lives have been unalterably changed by the impact of automating computing will wonder how it all happened â€“ and who made it happen. If we lose that history, we will lose our cultural heritage.”
Itâ€™s important to preserve the â€œwhyâ€ and the â€œhow,â€ not just the â€œwhat.â€
Often the process and the result are accidental. â€œI wasnâ€™t trying to invent an integrated circuit,â€ Bob Noyce
, co-inventor of the integrated circuit, was quoted as saying about the breakthrough. â€œI was trying to solve a production problem.â€ The history of computing is the history of open, inquiring minds solving big, intractable problems â€“ even if sometimes they werenâ€™t trying to.
As Albert Einstein
observed, â€œThe best scientists are also artists.â€
Engineers have applied incredible creativity to solve the knotty problems of computing. Some of their ideas have worked. Some havenâ€™t. Thatâ€™s more than okay; itâ€™s worth celebrating.
In other cultures, failure can be shameful. Business failure can even send you to prison. But here, failure is viewed as a possible prelude to success.
Le talent nâ€™est pas quâ€™une question de compÃ©tences mÃ©tier
“AprÃ¨s des annÃ©es Ã se concentrer sur la performance de leurs salariÃ©s, les entreprises sâ€™engagent aujourdâ€™hui progressivement dans une dÃ©marche plus globale, visant Ã aller au-delÃ de la productivitÃ©, vers des notions de comportement, de motivation et dâ€™engagement.”
En effet, le talent est Ã©galement liÃ© Ã la personnalitÃ©. Selon une Ã©tude* que nous avons rÃ©cemment rÃ©alisÃ©e, trois des cinq types dâ€™Ã©valuations les plus utilisÃ©s en entreprise sont des tests de personnalitÃ©.
De plus en plus dâ€™entreprises intÃ¨grent les rÃ©seaux sociaux, plus particuliÃ¨rement professionnels, dans leurs processus de recrutement.
â€¨Cette tendance sâ€™explique ici aussi par leur volontÃ© de parvenir Ã une vision exhaustive de leurs talents
La motivation des salariÃ©s ne semble pas toujours retenir lâ€™attention des entreprises. En effet, toujours selon notre Ã©tude GATR, si 56% des professionnels des Ressources Humaines considÃ¨rent que lâ€™engagement et la fidÃ©lisation des collaborateurs sont des prioritÃ©s pour 2012, aucun processus formel de motivation nâ€™a Ã©tÃ© mis en place par 39% dâ€™entre eux et seuls 36% considÃ¨rent que le dÃ©veloppement de carriÃ¨re â€“ pourtant lâ€™un des principaux outils de rÃ©tention des talents â€“ est une prioritÃ©.
Why business meetings fail
“After General Motors (GM) bought his company EDS in 1984, Ross Perot used to say that one of the things that annoyed him most about serving on the automaker’s board was its penchant for forming committees to investigate pressing issues rather than simply making a decision about the best way to proceed.
Not that GM is unique. Many organizations struggle with this aversion to decision-making. Meanwhile, the endless meetings do nothing to improve productivity. They become exercises in “feeding the monster,” that is, following processes and procedures that serve the needs of the bureaucracy but not the needs of customers or employees. Many companies compound the damage by holding meetings to discuss future meeting (or “pre-meetings,” in corporate-speak).”
– Why is the team meeting? Often the answer to this question is, “Because we have to.” That’s not good enough. The team should meet to review progress or update situations. It may also meet to air ideas and deliberate over key decisions. Updates can be done via email. People’s time is better spent actually making decisions.
– What is our expected outcome? If you call the meeting, know what you want the outcome to be. This is essential. The reason meetings meander is that the leaders ostensibly running the gathering cede control to anyone who speaks, rather than proceeding a purposeful way.
Without clear answers to the above questions, you can bet the meeting will be a waste of time. It will neither succeed in generating ideas, nor trigger decisions. So forget it.
there is one exception — the “get-together.”
A get-together is an occasion to bring people around a common issue. The objective is to familiarize one another with an issue and to share different perspectives on it
IT professionals: Very much the time to change our approach
“At 62 years of age, and with my family needing more of my time, sadly itâ€™s come to a time to retire, and leave the way clear for my younger colleagues. Personally I think itâ€™s a good time for a new generation of younger colleagues to bring fresh thinking and indeed new understanding, to the new generation of technology and business use. I will of course continue to follow their thoughts and blogs.
Traditionally a final report, speech, and I guess that includes a blog too, is to provide a look back and summary over the past. I am not so sure thatâ€™s the right direction to be looking: with the current time, we have such an exciting social, society, business, and economy emerging, with technology at its heart. Still, there are some, hard, learnt lessons from the business adoption of the last major disruptive wave (that of the PC, networks, client-server architecture with the resulting innovation in business models around Business Process Re-engineering delivered by ERP).”
midstream IT is core to any enterprise staying in business and must be done flawlessly. But in achieving this position IT has lost much, if not nearly all, of its true ability to differentiate externally in market competitiveness in winning customers.
The technologies business managers use to change their competiveness in winning and maintaining customers are different. All based on the development of external capabilities
Innovation in business models demanded new capabilities and skills in order to achieve â€˜flow process across enterprisesâ€™ based on one common data model. Some data center managers rose to the opportunity and became CIOs. Sadly many continued to be hostile to the change citing â€˜goodâ€™ objections based on their experiences with the data center operating model. Data centers and the principles of good operations of mainframes, and indeed servers, havenâ€™t gone away and remain a critical part of the IT department. But they are just that, a part, not the whole, and probably rarely the focus of business strategy for the enterprise.
My point is that CIOs and the IT department cannot stop disruptive technology changes any more than the business managers can. Business managers have to, and are, embracing the new technologies because if they donâ€™t, they, and their business units, will become irrelevant and disappear under the competitive conditions of the market.
. Use your experience to enable the â€˜safeâ€™ adoption of â€˜consumer ITâ€™ and empower the business managers to new levels of competitive differentiation by the use of technology.
Systems, Technology, and Good Intentions | Rethinking Complexity
The insight? That systems thinking shows that technological systems are meaningless without consideration of both the machines that compose them and the people that design, operate, and benefit from them.”
First, we must recognize what systems are, what their nature is, and where they exist. In the simplest terms, according to Donella Meadows, a system is “an interconnected set of elements that is coherently organized in a way that achieves something
What is not often recognized is that, even in todayâ€™s cyber world, many systems require not only the human processes, but also the machines that enable improvements or advancements in those processes
Sociotechnical systems can enable a certain complacency if we depend too much on the endowments of those technologies. As Australian author Clive James once noted, “It is only when they go wrong that machines remind you how powerful they are.”
Still, the sentient beings that design, build, and operate the mechanisms or technologies are often left out of the concept of the overall system.
they are composed of both people and technology in a battle for symbiosis. There is an irrevocable chicken-and-egg relationship; without the ideological human beginnings, the technologies exist without substantive context.
information systems “more than their hardware, software, and data. [Information systems] also encompass the people and the work practices needed to produce the information the system yields. They are, therefore, characterized not as technical, but as sociotechnical.“
Today, efficient application of sociotechnical systems may even be the tiebreaker in corporate success. Through distance learning, virtual teaming, and global networking, todayâ€™s corporations have changed the very definition of business operations. Information sharing and the resultant management of knowledge over greatly dispersed geographic assets is not only worthwhile, but truly critical.
These are ways of freeing people from the too-close control of conventional organization, giving them a degree of freedom to direct their own activities, to assume responsibility, and, importantly, to satisfy their egoistic needs.”
, technology “must be guided by two values: enhancing human dignity and not unethically disenfranchising people.”
Sociotechnical systems almost define business today in both economic and humanistic aspects. Inseparably wrapped up are the people, the technologies, and the ethical concerns that cannot be left unconsidered.
Mettez un peu de Â« flou Â» dans votre processus de dÃ©cision[nel] !
“Nous entendons et lisons souvent quâ€™une dÃ©cision doit Ãªtre Â« claire, nette, facile Ã comprendre donc Ã traiter Â». A ce disque rayÃ©, on y retrouve gÃ©nÃ©ralement associÃ©s les termes tels que Â« unique, finale, ultimeâ€¦ Â» En un mot, vous Â« cochez la case Â» et vous passez Ã la rubrique suivante.
Nous avons Ã©galement observÃ© que la nÃ©cessitÃ© de la prÃ©cision qui accompagne la dÃ©cision, contraint les cadres dirigeants Ã prendre parfois des dÃ©cisions dÃ©nuÃ©es de sens. AprÃ¨s avoir expÃ©rimentÃ©s la dÃ©cision type case Ã cocher (ou noir ou blanc), nous pensons quâ€™il vaut mieux parfois rester Â« flou Â» pour introduire dÃ©libÃ©rÃ©ment lâ€™imprÃ©cision dans le processus dÃ©cisionnel. “
MBA students offer fresh perspective on business social engagement
“With social media engagement becoming more central to business success by the day, companies are eager for innovative ways to leverage social networking to maximum effect. The MBA students at Hult International Business School have some fresh ideas on how large enterprises can extend the use of social computing to increase brand awareness, reach more customers and create better partnerships and opportunities.”
Saperstein, who teaches at Hultâ€™s San Francisco campus, split his international marketing management classes into 15 project teams and asked each one to develop a comprehensive marketing plan with solutions to optimize a companyâ€™s use of social media
Alcatraz 6 recommends building a virtual community featuring an internal ring and an external ring that maximize use of current Web 2.0 technology and serve as a bridge to next-generation Web 3.0 social media platforms.
The internal ring would integrate and consolidate all work-related applications and social platforms into a single Web site where employees can easily share experiences through social networking.
Like the internal ring, the external community should consolidate all social media streams into a single Web site to maximize ease of use and engagement.
Maintain a central corporate blog to connect with existing customers, show potential customers that the company has the necessary skills to answer their needs, and get valuable feedback from a range of parties
Develop apps and interactive games to promote the companyâ€™s brands, products and services and help reach target audiences.
Create a social media community that effectively coordinates the companyâ€™s social platforms to positively support its business strategy.
Use social tools to identify potential customers and guide them through the products and services they may be interested in.
large companies still exercise restraint when it comes to using social media, but according to Professor Saperstein, they need to break out and expand their use in compelling ways. Itâ€™s the next generation of marketing professionals â€” the millennial generation â€” that will lead the way.
â€œWhen it comes to social, right now we as teachers are being reverse mentored by our students because they know a lot more about social engagement than we do,â€ Saperstein said.
Is It Time to Move Beyond the ERP? Are Social, Mobile and Search the New Core of the Enterprise Solution?
Since todayâ€™s global business structures are bigger than the enterprise, we are bombarded by the power of social networking for the enterprise. But after sitting through the annual conferences of several mega-enterprise software firms who are clearly committed to incorporating social networking into their solutions, the question occurred to meâ€”is it time to abandon the ERP in favor of a new solution? A new platform? A new software category for business? Or is enterprise social networking an element of the enterpriseâ€”ERPâ€”package?
Since todayâ€™s global business structures are bigger than the enterprise, we are bombarded by the power of social networking for the enterprise. But after sitting through the annual conferences of several mega-enterprise software firms who are clearly committed to incorporating social networking into their solutions, the question occurred to meâ€”is it time to abandon the ERP
in favor of a new solution? A new platform? A new software category for business? Or is enterprise social networking
an element of the enterpriseâ€”ERPâ€”package?
Donâ€™t misunderstand. We will always need accounting, sales order processing, and HR that provide an enterprise transaction layer. But if we look at the broad view of what occurs in the business process, both with customers and across supply chain, we understand that there is more than transaction management going on.
Business process concept modeling for ad hoc workflow. Todayâ€™s solutions have pretty strong workflow baked in that guides the process or transaction. Take for example, the sales order process consisting of configure, order, credit check, and confirmation which are all part of an automated workflow in the system. But if we think beyond the transaction, which takes place in the last ten minutes in the sales process, we find that in the weeks, months, or maybe years it takes to find, sell and close the business, many of those processes are not well orchestrated.
File and media sharing baked in. If we look at business peopleâ€™s daily activities, they spend a percentage of their timesharing files. So bake it in.
Rationalizing and integrating the various data typesâ€”big data context. Transaction data, cubes and analytics and unstructured data are all part of the mix.
Social Network and subscriber management. The business process with its transaction has its own unique network
In order to achieve the â€˜everywhere enterprise,â€™ the cloud becomes a core component of mobile, since we donâ€™t have a terabyte of software and data on our phone
“In speaking face-to-face with 1,709 CEOs, general managers and senior public sector leaders around the globe, leaders confirmed that our new connected era is changing how people engage. How are CEOs responding to the complexity of increasingly interconnected organizations, markets, societies and gov”
There are executives who know everything about costs but nothing about value
“Organizations that believe in innovation and verify that within its walls there is no capacity to respond to the challenges posed to them do not have another exit, to survive, but to seek abroad the inspiration for their new business model.
This demand however will require an extra effort of understanding the problem and its resolution forms and will require the construction of a new mental model, which often requires the abandonment of some old beliefs, certain assumptions or implies even unlearn.
We need to travel from times where questioning hierarchies was bad and the costs were the dominant emphasis (traditional business model), for the times when questioning is a fundamental need to develop critical thinking in order to impregnate significance when creating value through a collaborative work.
Letâ€™s Be Less Productive
“HAS the pursuit of labor productivity reached its limit?
Productivity â€” the amount of output delivered per hour of work in the economy â€” is often viewed as the engine of progress in modern capitalist economies. Output is everything. Time is money. The quest for increased productivity occupies reams of academic literature and haunts the waking hours of C.E.O.â€™s and finance ministers. Perhaps forgivably so: our ability to generate more output with fewer people has lifted our lives out of drudgery and delivered us a cornucopia of material wealth. “
The New Economics Foundation
, a British think tank, proposes a 21-hour workweek. It may not be the workaholicâ€™s choice. But itâ€™s certainly a strategy worth thinking about.
By easing up on the gas pedal of efficiency and creating jobs in what are traditionally seen as â€œlow productivityâ€ sectors, we have within our grasp the means to maintain or increase employment,
At first, this may sound crazy; weâ€™ve become so conditioned by the language of efficiency
Of course, a transition to a low-productivity economy wonâ€™t happen by wishful thinking. It demands careful attention to incentive structures
Social intranet case study: Alcatel-Lucent video sharing
“Alcatel-Lucent is a leader in mobile, fixed, IP and optics technologies, and a pioneer in applications and services, Alcatel-Lucent includes Bell Labs, one of the worldâ€™s fore most centres of research and innovation in communication technology.
Itâ€™s also is one of very few companies to have created and implemented an internal video sharing service company-wide, especially one that demonstrates the successful adoption of video sharing by employees, of which AL has 77,000 across the planet.”
Le poste de travail collaboratif – partie 2… point zÃ©ro!
“Dans la premiÃ¨re partie de ce billet, et aprÃ¨s s’Ãªtre libÃ©rÃ© des 5 contraintes qui l’empÃªche d’Ã©merger, le poste de travail collaboratif est vu comme un terminal d’accÃ¨s aux ressources et espaces partagÃ©s par les collaborateurs. Il leur permet de dÃ©velopper de nouveau modes de collaboration et notamment ceux portÃ©s par “l’entreprise 2.0″.”
La collaboration n’est donc pas une fonction, mais un assemblage de ces fonctions, au sein d’espaces collaboratifs qui se personnalisent en fonction des mÃ©tiers de chacun et gÃ¨rent les droits d’accÃ¨s et la sÃ©curitÃ©.
L’enjeu du poste de travail collaboratif 2.0 est donc bien le transfert d’usages actuellement dans l’email vers des briques fonctionnelles centrÃ©es sur ces nouvelles fonctions.
la recherche et l’accÃ¨s Ã la connaissance est dans l’entreprise le meilleur gisement de productivitÃ© pour la collaboration
l’organisation des activitÃ©s dans lesquelles viennent se fondre les autres moyens de communication, emails, social et communications temp rÃ©el
les structures qui resteront essentielles dans l’entreprise, apportent un moyen de trier, filtre, d’organiser, proche des prÃ©occupations des diffÃ©rents mÃ©tier
C’est tout lâ€™enjeu pour les entreprises de ne s’engager qu’avec des Ã©diteurs qui visent des standards ouverts, comme par exemple Open Social, et de fuir les stratÃ©gies fermÃ©es.
Mais n’oublions pas que l’entreprise 2.0 c’est avant tout un programme de transformation de la collaboration.
How this CIO Helped Bayer Become Social
“Every time I see another article about how CIOs are wasting their time participating in social media, Iâ€™m frequently reminded of one of my favorite Mark Twain quotes, â€œThe man with a new idea is a crank until the idea succeeds.â€
And succeed they have. Take Bayerâ€™s MaterialScience CIO Kurt De Ruwe, who tells me that introducing social technologies into Bayer has created an irreversible movement: â€œYou canâ€™t stop it. Once you make it available to people on the right platform the magic happens. The users are driving adoption, creating value and they are much happier. All in all itâ€™s inexpensive to run and the impact it has on the organization, though difficult to quantify in numbers, is huge.â€”
Initially they started with 50 users, quickly grew it to 2,000, then to 6,000 and today De Ruwe boasts, â€œwe have more than 15,000 users, and in a few weeksâ€™ time weâ€™ll open up the system that ideally will be able to be used by hundreds of thousands of people
Itâ€™s like social media has humanized the relationship between employees, where email did not.
Employees now better understand the organizationâ€™s mission and the projects that support it.
Bayer uses IBM Connections to connect people with people and people to documents and information. Itâ€™s made people and information much easier to find.
Itâ€™s not that you rollout a process and a productivity guru then imagines best practices around deployment. The reality is that in different countries with different cultures and different locations with different demographic profiles â€“ thereâ€™s going to be different patterns. You need to engage people so that they have the ability to input and tune those business processes because they will see and identify opportunities for continuous process improvement
if people ask me to quantify in Euros or dollars what the platform has delivered to us â€“ I tell them to look at the change of mindset, the open information sharing, and how quickly information passes around Bayer. Things that otherwise may have taken two or three weeks to uncover, now take hours
SWOT ou SOAR ?
“J’ai passÃ© cette semaine une journÃ©e Ã animer un sÃ©minaire pour un client sur la “Vision”. On appelle Ã§a “l’ambition”, ” la vision”, peu importe, le rituel est souvent le mÃªme. On choisit une date, en ce moment, on est sur des horizons 2015 ou 2020, et on projette le futur. Les mÃ©thodologies sont multiples et bien rÃ´dÃ©es.
Car ce qui fait la diffÃ©rence, ce n’est pas la mÃ©thodologie.”
(oui, c’est la fameuse analyse SWOT, qu’on a apprise Ã l’Ã©cole). En fait, en conduisant cette analyse, on passe dÃ©jÃ 50% Ã se dire ce qui va mal (les faiblesses, les menaces), et encore; car on trouve plein d’idÃ©es gÃ©nÃ©ralement pour se regarder dans la glace et se dire qu’on est nuls
on va distiller dans l’entreprise, autour de nous, ce snetiment de culpabilitÃ©, et donc souvent gÃ©nÃ©rer des rÃ©actions de dÃ©fense, de protection, de rejet; bref, de quoi mettre par terre tout exerice de vision
Cette approche de la “Vision” ne va pas chercher les intentions et l’analyse des manques, mais au contraire se nourrir de l’identification des forces et opportunitÃ©s que nous avons dÃ©jÃ en nous, et qui nous ont permis de connaÃ®tre, par le passÃ©, ces “grands moments”
La dÃ©marche transforme l’approche SWOT en approche SOAR
( Strenghts, Opportunities, Aspirations, Results).
Cela suppose d’entretenir un contexte qui inspire la curiositÃ© naturelle,
Alors, pour nos exercices de Vision, allons chercher cette “apprÃ©ciation esthÃ©tique” plutÃ´t que “l’utilitÃ© pratique”.
Entreprise sociale – Mashup vs Middleware humain ?
“Dans la tribune libre que jâ€™ai eu lâ€™occasion dâ€™Ã©crire pour le livre blanc de la Gouvernance de lâ€™information (encore merci Jean-Pascal), jâ€™ai posÃ© les premiÃ¨re briques de cette vision dâ€™un SI agile et interconnectÃ© donnant le pouvoir Ã ses utilisateurs sans pour autant lâ€™enlever des mains de la DSI. La voici enfin dÃ©veloppÃ©e sur haikusages !”
e temps est venu pour lâ€™entreprise de sâ€™ouvrir aux services proposÃ©s dans le monde grand public mais Ã©galement de sâ€™en inspirer dans sa maniÃ¨re de penser et mettre Ã disposition le SI.
n le salariÃ© joue le rÃ´le de middleware humain entre la multitude dâ€™outils de son quotidien opÃ©rationnel sans que ne lui soit donnÃ©es les clÃ©s lui permettant dâ€™adapter les outils Ã ses besoins, avec pour rÃ©sultat un dÃ©sintÃ©rÃªt progressifs pour les outils sociaux au profit de lâ€™email et du SI mÃ©tier
Tous sâ€™entendent sur une vision dâ€™outils au service de lâ€™usage, conversationnels, flexibles, Ã©volutifs, intÃ©ropÃ©rables et capables de sâ€™adapter au contexte mouvant de lâ€™entreprise sociale et de dÃ©livrer au bon moment la valeur ajoutÃ©e quâ€™on leur prÃªte, Ã des annÃ©es lumiÃ¨res de nombres de SI dâ€™entreprises pourtant fort couteuxâ€¦
IntÃ©ropÃ©rabilitÃ© car ne rÃªvons pas, le temps ou le SI nâ€™Ã©tait constituÃ© que dâ€™applications en silo couvrant chacune un domaine donnÃ© est rÃ©volu
Mashup car il nâ€™y a rien de plus dÃ©cevant, de contre productif que de fournir des outils limitÃ©s dans leurs usages et ne permettant pas sauf Ã©volution de rÃ©pondre Ã lâ€™instant T au besoin de lâ€™utilisateur, dâ€™Ãªtre modelÃ© par lui.
Ã lâ€™aide dâ€™une plateforme de Mashup sâ€™appuyant sur lâ€™interopÃ©rabilitÃ© des outils sociaux existants et Ã venir, chaque employÃ© est Ã mÃªme dâ€™adapter ses outils numÃ©riques Ã ses besoins gagnant ainsi en agilitÃ©, en confort et par voie de consÃ©quence en productivitÃ©