“â€œI no longer support the idea of home page news and features,â€ says Shel Holtz, Principal, Holtz Communications + Technology. â€œMy opinion has changed 180 degrees in the past two years. Activity streams is where we are moving.â€”
Finding a balance between push and pull is important, and not easily attained without explicit research and understanding of employee and management needs and concerns. Remember: most organizations are not a democracy, but most employees understand this and donâ€™t expect the home page to be exactly what they want, when they want.
At Pitney Bowes, Corporate Communications was able to increase readership to intranet news articles by 300% by promoting individual articles in Yammer newsfeeds
â€œWe need to deploy channels that employees care about and then pull them in.
Our finding is that to be successful, internal social media initiatives must focus first and foremost on the development of emotional capital, which we define as the aggregate feelings of goodwill toward a company and the way it operates,â€
Holtz cites three phases to securing executive support:
Buy in â€“ rationale and ROI, investment, culture change.
Accountability â€“ Subordinatesâ€™ behavior, reward and recognition.
Participation â€“ Not optional; adoption depends on developing emotional capital
Identify leaders who are authentic and whom employees trust
Help them develop social media skills
Ask them to (and help them) join and build communities where they can grow emotional capital
Deploy social media tools sequentially
Prepare leaders to see benefits only after emotional capital has been built
â€œSmart leaders today, we have found, engage with employees in a way that resembles an ordinary person-to-person conversation more than it does a series of commands from on high.
Innovative or not, social or not, most organizations need to find a balance between the push and pull of home page content on the intranet
“A few months ago, AIL launched The Edison Project, to â€œexplore how the new creators and makers, the new metrics and measurement, the new funding and business models, and the new screens are all combining into a new ecosystem â€“ and how media and entertainment companies can reorient themselves to flourish in this emerging Imagination Economy.â€”
The global rise of ubiquitous and affordable technologies are leading us to a kind of imagination economy, a participatory culture where social wonders are more important than technology, and enabling experiences have more value than specific products and services.
Sophisticated technologies are critical to the development of a global digital money ecosystem, but we must keep in mind the central role that money has played in our lives through the ages. Peopleâ€™s emotional relationship with money, not technology, will drive this particular digital evolution.
In this new golden age of TV and streaming media, storytelling itself is now being reinvented for the digital age.
Our technologies keep advancing, but our ability to consume the information and applications they are now bringing us is subject to our very human limitations.
These are complex yet fascinating problems. For media companies, are these the best of times, given the opportunity to develop and distribute all kinds of great content, with more to come as we learn to harness some of the exciting technologies being explored by the Annenberg Innovation Lab? Or are these the worst of times, as advances in technologies and new competitors continue to wreak havoc on their business models?
“WellPointâ€™s effort to update its digital business model by changing the nature of its revenue structure is similar to many of the IT-enabled organizational transformations that weâ€™ve studied. In this time of fast-growing enterprise digitization, companies are finding it necessary to build platforms and services to leverage the data they collect and then deliver it to customers if they are going to do business in new and different ways. “
Three practices underlie WellPointâ€™s success in this new system: treating the revised project as a cultural change, creating incremental goals, and focusing on the customer.
WellPoint executives committed their time to the project and created metrics that aligned with the desired changes.
The second place with incremental goals was in the revised development of the Enhanced Personal Care Program itself. Rather than waiting until the end of the development to assess the overall project, the focus became smaller, modular parts of the program. Itâ€™s much easier to diagnose and fix problems in contained modules.
The third practice that helped ensure program success at WellPoint was an effort to think about the problem from the point of view of the customer.
Discover. Many of the executives weâ€™ve spoken with admit they are still more facile with data capture than data crunching.
Design. Consumers now have much more control over where they will focus their attention, so companies need to craft a compelling customer experience in which all interactions are expressly tailored to a customerâ€™s stage in his or her decision journey.
Deliver. â€œAlways onâ€ marketing programs, in which companies engage with customers in exactly the right way at any contact point along the journey, require agile teams of experts in analytics and information technologies, marketing, and experience design
Even in this era of big data and widespread digitization of customer information, some companies still lack a 360-degree view of the people who buy their products and services.
To get the full customer portrait rather than just a series of snapshots, companies need a central data mart that combines all the contacts a customer has with a brand: basic consumer data plus information about transactions, browsing history, and customer-service interactions (for an illustrative example of how companies can lose potential customers by failing to optimize digital channels, see exhibit)
With a comprehensive data set in hand, companies can undertake the sort of quick-hit â€œshop diagnosticsâ€ that many tell us is lacking in their marketing and e-commerce programs. Using analytic applications such as SAS and R, and by applying various algorithms and models to longitudinal data, companies can better model the cost of their marketing efforts, find the most effective journey patterns, spot potential dropout points, and identify new customer segments
Additionally, by using business-process software and services from vendors such as Adobe Systems, ExactTarget, Pegasystems, and Responsys, companies can identify in real time the basic â€œtriggersâ€ for what individual customers need and valueâ€”regardless of the product or serviceâ€”and personalize their approach when making cross- or up-sell offers.
This lean, start-up approach might sound counterintuitive to large, entrenched marketing organizations in which decisions are made at a snailâ€™s pace, but test-and-learn methods can help companies decide how best to optimize (and customize) critical design attributes of the consumer decision journey at various points along the way
To create similarly frictionless experiences, some companies have created 24/7 digital â€œwindow shopsâ€ to test product ideas and customer interactions and collect rapid feedback without the need for additional labor or inventory.
In our experience, too many companies are afraid to launch â€œgood enoughâ€ campaignsâ€”ones that are continually refined as customersâ€™ purchase behaviors and stated preferences change.
These types of agile, data-driven activities must be supported by an organization that has the right people, tools, and processes. Many companies will have some of the talent required, but not all, and executives will inevitably face resistance when it comes to introducing lean tools and techniques into their sales, marketing, and IT processes.
Building an agile marketing organization will take time, of course. Companies should start by assembling a â€œscrum teamâ€ that will bring the right people together to test, learn, and scale.
Companies likely will need to hire people with skills that differ from the ones they rely on now.
Companies need to make strategic decisions about the best pathways to build customer value. Many cite digital as one of their top three priorities in this regard, but few have taken the time to measure the level of digital maturity their organization has achieved.
Indeed, the companies that ultimately succeed in omnichannel marketing and sales will likely resemble tech companies and, interestingly, publishersâ€”effectively using big data and digital touchpoints to drive growth and reduce costs, while producing and managing a variety of content (catalogs, coupons, web pages, mobile apps, and user-generated content) in real time across multiple platforms to create breakthrough customer experiences
“Instant gratification â€“ that is the norm today. Whether delighting a customer in real time, reaching new markets, collaborating instantly with partners and suppliers across the world, enterprises must exceed expectations to achieve a competitive edge. And itâ€™s not just about speed, itâ€™s about the experience.”
He dismisses the idea that productivity is tied to the number of hours clocked at the end of the day, arguing a great deal of this time is misspent and unfocused. Instead of a 40-hour workweek, Treehouseâ€™s 72 full-time employees work eight-hour days Monday thru Thursday.
other companies, such as Beholder, a creative content agency specializing in film and video production, web design, and development, three-day weekends are only offered during the summer months.
Cramming five days of work into four simply forces employees to use their time wisely.
Less time is spent on water-cooler chat or discussions that should be left for happy hour and employees learn to prioritize tasks more effectively and to work together to ensure clientsâ€™ needs are still met
“One day while driving home, I thought: â€œWhy donâ€™t I just stop using email altogether?â€ That night while drifting off to sleep I imagined my email-free life. I liked the picture. Within the same week, I made the decision to cut email out of my life.”
I no longer experience the compulsive need to empty out my inbox all the time.
I no longer start the day with email. Instead, I open the project tool belonging to the client who I will be giving my attention to for that day,
I have reclaimed on average three hours of every working day.
I no longer have file sharing problems because the files are accessible anytime, anywhere. With TeamworkPM, I also have Dropbox integrated which means that file sharing is even more simplified.
1. Track your current productivity levels
In order to start this experiment, I needed to track the difference in my productivity levels with and without email. I started my no email journey by installing RescueTime, a tool that tracks your workday activities and calculates a productivity score for you.
2. Notify people
I started letting people know about my decision and thought it would be the easiest part of the process. It proved to be the hardest. I put a note on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter to announce my decision
The reaction to my decision was interesting: a few people even decided to join me.
3. Move clients to project management systems
After notifying my clients of my decision, I also explained to them that all work would be moving into a collaborative space. I set up accounts with Huddle, TeamworkPM, Basecamp and Asana. I
“The question of when and where to invest in big data is the most common question I hear. Companies want to know when and where they should start or when they should proceed to the next level. The confusion quickly becomes overwhelming and paralysis sets in. To help you break that cycle and move forward, here are six ways to overcome paralysis and start moving forward againâ€¦”
You can have terrific people working in the right teams and still not see the financial results youâ€™re hoping for. Why? It could be that your organizationâ€™s structure is creating obstacles that compromise your workforceâ€™s performance.
You have front-line employees who create what you sell or who deal directly with customers: software developers, sales reps, call-center staffers, and so on. You also have support staff, including the people in marketing, finance, HR, and other functions. When the tooth-to-tail ratio gets too low, front-line people find that they have to send every customer request or idea for improvement up through the bureaucracy and wait days or weeks for a response.
When you hire a manager, he or she typically generates enough work to keep somebody else busy as well. Senior executives â€” SVPs and EVPs â€” are even more costly.
Manage your tooth-to-tail ratios closely. Appropriate ratios naturally vary from one industry to another. But a company can gauge its performance against benchmark levels and make adjustments as necessary
Trim your supervisory layers. Compare your managerial spans â€” the average number of direct reports per supervisorâ€”with industry benchmarks, and adjust your structure accordingly.
Limit the caravans. It does little good to eliminate unnecessary supervisors if those who remain are as costly and inefficient as ever. In some companies, itâ€™s common for senior VPs to have not just an assistant but a whole coterie of helpers, complete with a chief of staff
A large software company we worked with recently eliminated more than 40% of its supervisors, ensuring that the people who actually develop the product arenâ€™t overburdened with managers and other functionaries.
“Much has been made recently of the imperative to fully transition our businesses into the modern digital world. It now hardly needs to be said at this point. There is even some encouraging news for traditional enterprises: The latest data from Forrester shows that companies are indeed at long last making digital transformation a top priority, with 74% of executives saying that they currently have a strategy to get there.”
There is the â€˜bolt-onâ€™ strategy, which typically means adding a few new digital channels to existing touchpoint
Then there is the â€˜digital transformationâ€™ approach to digital. Itâ€™s a full-on, meaningful reconception of the business, often using a startup or incubator model, with the intent to re-imagine a digital native organization with all that it entails
the latter approach also has many of the characteristics that corporate leadership tends to avoid: a) The big bang initiative which has a high likelihood of failure, b) cross-silo involvement, meaning it will encounter numerous bureaucratic and political obstacles, and b) the likelihood of of success being dependent on securing rarefied talent
Another way of putting it is that the CEOs, CIOs, COOs, and CMOs â€” the four roles most directly responsible for guiding this transformation â€” will secure rewards for their organizations that are directly commensurate with their commitment to drive broad digital adaptation and change
Seek out digital change. Avoid having it imposed.
Cultivate capabilities to support multiple operating models.
Understand and absorb the new competencies of digital across the organization.
Instead, employ internal and external networks to create a naturally-supportive environment where digital change is far more scalable, emergent, adaptive, and continuous.
“As Iâ€™ve worked on my upcoming book, Open Data Now â€“ to be published by McGraw-Hill on January 10 â€“ Iâ€™ve had to think through and explain how Open Data, Big Data, and Open Government are related to each other.”
1. Big Data thatâ€™s not Open Data. A lot of Big Data falls in this category, including some Big Data that has great commercial value.
2. Open Government work thatâ€™s not Open Data. This is the part of Open Government that focuses purely on citizen engagement.
3. Big, Open, Non-Governmental Data. Here we find scientific data-sharing and citizen science projects like Zooniverse
4. Open Government Data thatâ€™s not Big Data. Government data doesnâ€™t have to be Big Data to be valuable. Modest amounts of data from states, cities, and the federal government can have a major impact when itâ€™s released
. Open Data â€“ not Big, not from Government. This includes the private-sector data that companies choose to share for their own purposes â€“ for example, to satisfy their potential investors or to enhance their reputations.
6. Big, Open, Government Data (the trifecta). These datasets may have the most impact of any category. Government agencies have the capacity and funds to gather very large amounts of data, and making those datasets open can have major economic benefits.
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