Happy Holidays!

Wow, 2010 flew by! 2010 has been an interesting year for me. The biggest thing has been my new job, a new challenge. After 10 good years at Océ, I started working for Entopic and am enjoying it. I'm curious what 2011 will be about.

I want to thank all of you for reading this blog, interacting with me offline and online. I hope we can continue our conversation in good health next year!

I wish you and your loved ones Happy Holidays! I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas time and a Happy New Year.

A history of Social Networks - Open always wins

Techcrunch ran a very interesting series of posts about the history of social networking. They were written by Mark Suster (@msuster). I think you should go ahead and read all the posts, but I'll pass on some highlights here to get you started.

Marks posts are about the “6 C’s of Social Networking” – Communications, connectedness, common experiences, content, commerce & cool experiences (fun!). He stresses that social networks exists before they were hyped in our time they just work better now "and there are more people doin’ it." And a bit further on: "Yes, social networks of 2010 have much better usability, have better developed 3rd-party platforms and many more people are connected.  But let’s be honest – they’re mostly the same old shit, reinvented, with more people online and trained.
But less considered is the fact that the success of the Web 2.0 companies versus the Web 1.0 ones were enhanced because they coincided with hardware that allowed us to capture more content instantly – namely images and video – otherwide Web 2.0 might have been a lot less differentiated."
He relates back to the beginning of internet and AOL. "The funny thing about AOL is that while you dialed up to the Internet, the goal of AOL was to keep you locked into their proprietary content and thus earned the classification of “walled garden” because they kept you inside AOL." From AOL he goes on to show how closed and open social networks has been successful or not. "The lesson was learned over 30 years in Silicon Valley: you create ecosystems where third-parties can innovate and thrive and you become the legitimate center of it all and can tax the system later.
He closes off with social networking trends he sees (- I only list a few of them):

  • Social Networking is becoming mobile "and that adds new dimensions to how we use social networks.  The most obvious change is that now social networks become "location aware.""
  • Facebook is our social graph and will be so for the next decade, Mark says. He goes on to say Facebook with make our social graph portable or we'll move to new networks. Because "nobody exists in one social network." He thinks public and private network will be more separate in the future.
  • There will be lots of focus on privacy in the future.
  • Social networking will mix with everything we do. "As our social graph becomes more portable I believe that social networking will become a feature in everything we do."

What really struck me in these posts is that it shouts out: Openness always wins on the long run. Do you agree? This is the case in mobile, but also in social networking (tools).

Two other nice quotes to think about:

  • "Twitter is much more.  ... in a nutshell it is: an RSS reader, a chat room, instant messaging, a marketing channel, a customer service department and increasingly a data mine."
  • "When you’re on Facebook you’re not on the Internet—you’re on the InterNOT."

Social Media and the Workplace by Commoncraft

Commoncraft does it again! They released another video explaining something no too easy in an easy way. This video is about social media and the workplace. It mostly focuses on explaining how companies can join in the conversation. And how not only comms but all employees can be empowered by being trained and giving them clear social media guidelines. I enjoyed it and hope you will too. It's great stuff when you need to explain to company decision makers what social media is about and how to use it.

Culture <> Social Media

Jane McConnell raised an interesting question about the relationship between social media and culture. She asked:
Will cultural differences impact adoption of social media? Will culture “eat” social media for breakfast? or will social media “eat” culture?
I find social media interesting because I see the relationship between social media and culture as bi-directional. The (company) culture has to fit social media (culture) for successful adoption. But I also see culture change due to social media use. I think this has to do with the underlying concepts of social media, like relational networks, information is social and humans as social beings. These concepts fit us people very well, because they are deeply human. Tapping into these concepts when rolling out social media is a key to success (and positive cultural change). Rolling it out as technology (non-human focus) is a key to failure (and negative cultural change).


Also refer to this interesting post about cultural differences. (HT, Ana Silva for pointer!)

An implicit expertise network / IBM´s Expert Network on Slideshare

Luis Suarez recently pointed me to this. IBM set up an Expert Network on Slideshare, giving us a way to see all the slides produced by IBM-ers. Adam Christensen has a post explaining why this was done.
This got me thinking. I think this is a smart move.  Isn’t this a great way to implicitly show the expertise of IBM-ers? Of course LinkedIn tries to do the same, the other way around. You set up your profile. And you can connect Slideshare to your profile. Problem is, nobody says that profile is correct. And clicking through to the proof (e.g. your presentations) is not that easy. Furthermore you can´t see if that person is the only expert in that organization or the organization as a whole has expertise in a certain area.
I think if you’re looking for someone from IBM to help you out, the Expert Network on Slideshare will get you to the right man/woman much more quickly. What do you think of this move? And do you think such a network in Slideshare is a better expertise locator than LinkedIn? I´d love to hear your thoughts!

Global Intranet Trends 2011 by @netjmc Published

Just wanted to write a short post to create some buzz for Jane McConnell’s latest Global Intranet Trends 2011 report. I hope you all go and read it. Jane posted a couple of highlight posts about the report. I’m reading it now and will write one or more posts about it. I love reading the report. You get a great overview of the state of affairs in the (social) intranet landscape. It’s also a great way to benchmark your intranet or an intranet you’re working on.

This year Jane also published a free executive snapshot. It gives you a good idea of the quality and richness of the report. I hope you go ahead and download/buy the report. And also participate in the survey next year!

Launch of a merged intranet and first steps to an integrated social media platform #epem

Johan Hillebrand, Head of Internal Communication at ABN/Amro.

Two main challenges Communications has: information overload (too much email…) and they couldn’t find information. Another thing that was mentioned was: stop paper communication, move to digital. They decided to take on these challenges by building a new intranet.
Goals for the new intranet:
  • Fewer channels
  • Offer relevant information
  • Centralize content

They choose to have the intranet look a lot like their internet site. No complaints about confusing the intranet for the internet yet. (They launched a couple of weeks ago.)
They kept the look and feel very simple. They combine general and local news. They assume people have 10 minutes to read news and cluster that in a box.
ABN has a separate social media platform (not integrated in the intranet). It's called Arena. It was built by one of their contractors. They plan to integrate it into the intranet in the future. But the look-and-feel is the same. They piloted within retail-banking (and it’s still in pilot phase). The platform was set up so all staff can engage in a dialogue.
Objectives for the social platform are:
  • Create dialogue with staff
  • To share knowledge in order to improve our services
  • To accelerate problem identification
  • Etc.
First feedback on both seems hopeful.

Business challenges in migrating a large intranet to an employee portal at Nestle #epem

Helen McCarthy, eCommunications Manager at Nestle.

Nestle is a huge organization. 280000 employees at Nestle (100000 in factory), 449 factories, operations in 83 countries.
Nestle runs their old portal on SAP. Of course they also have email, fileshares, etc.
What they needed was collaboration, up-to-date content, reduced information overload, transactions/workflows, global vs local communications, ability to target, confidentiality/security.
They set up a new portal based on SAP. One landing page, showing relevant information to the employee. But the employee couldn’t decide if he/she wanted something else targeted to him/her. The targeting was too restrictive. The technology was as well.
So, they had a Kit-Kat break! ;-)
They now want to model their intranet around their internet site. Their internet works and won awards. It was built on Sharepoint and so the intranet will be as well. They're aiming for the iPad as the standard of usability. Nestle's intranet will have the employee in the center. Though some targeting will still be there, to get management messages through.
From the audience there was a word of warning about making the internet and intranet look-and-feel the same: it can seriously confuse employees.

Intranet opportunities and challenges in a multi-brand organization #epem

Jenni Laajarinne of Amer Sports Corporation is the first speaker today! 6300 employees. Amer Sports is behind brands as Wilson, Atomic, Salomon and Suunto.

Her talk will focus on using social media applications to encourage community-thinking.
She has a case example of our organization using and internal social media application to encourage community thinking in the year that marked the company’s 60th anniversary.
They have home-grown CMS, created by IT. They have 6 brand intranet and 4 business area intranets. These intranets are pretty autonomous: the look-and-feel is different, the structure is different, etc.
They were looking for a fun and exciting way to celebrate the company’s anniversary. They wanted to take the opportunity to celebrate the employee’s passion for sports. They set up an intranet page to share their sports moments. It ran for 3 months (so it should be simple to use for there is no time for adoption!) and there was a monthly prize. Employees could upload text, pictures and videos of their sports moments.
The content could be searched in all kinds of ways (type of sports, year of event, name of contributor, votes, comments).
They also defined what they would like to measure to tell if it was a success or not. It was a mix of soft and hard targets. Like: raise awareness of Amer Sports and passion for sports, raise awareness for anniversary, gather at least 100 sports moments, engage 2250 absolute visitors during the campaign and increase usage of the Amer Sports intranet.
They 106 sports moments and the number is still growing even though the campaign has been stopped. 3500 unique visitors and lots coming back more than ones.

Social networking with Sharepoint 2010 @ ABB Global #epem

Next speaker: Stein-Ivar Aarsaether, ABB Global Web Management.

ABB is a global leader in power and automation technologies. 117000 employees. ABB has a long history (founded in 1883 after lots of mergers).
ABB’s intranet is a traditional CMS-intranet, based on Lotus Notes. In 2002 they were one of the top-ten intranets of the year (Nielsen).
Problems they have:
  • Hard to find information and services you’re looking for
  • Difficult to keep content updated
  • Lack of collaboration tools

They organized an ABB Intranet Conference in 2007. In 2009 they decided to go with Sharepoint 2010. In 2010 they launched the 1st version. Every couple of months they launch a new version.
ABB uses Google Search.
A new section in their intranet (based on SP 2010) allows employees to follow feeds of other employees (like Twitter). But it could be more interactive, like Facebook. For instance if you comment on someone’s feed he/she doesn’t see that… Commenting on activity stream in SP is not out-of-the-box.
ABB finds it hard to live up to the user expectations based on external experiences (internet).
Customizing SP is a lot of work, but the end result was good. Make clear distinctions what you customize and what not. And don’t expect SP to meet all your requirements.
ABB finds that Sharepoint governance should be multifaceted. Different governance for taxonomy, branding, information architecture, team roles, etc.
ABB finds that Sharepoint governance should be multifaceted. Different governance for taxonomy, branding, information architecture, team roles, etc.
They have governance for:
  • Ordering new team spaces
  • For pricing (free)
  • For cleaning up unused spaces
  • For ensuring the desired level of ‘brand building’
Plans they have are:
  • federated search (based on FAST)
  • move outside the firewall
  • further integration

Establishing social software to drive expertise exchange and how to measure it #epem

Wolfgang Jastrowski of Swiss Re is up next.
They use Jive for their intranet platform (out-of-the-box). The interesting fact is that they don’t train users. Wolfgang is from IT. They provided the platform and have users decide how to use it.
Blogging has not taken off as well as they thought. So they created roundtable to increase blogging.
How did they introduce social media tools inside? In 2008 the company realized that collaboration is key. They wanted a community centric collaboration approach.

Objectives:
  • Better support virtual teamwork
  • Boost information sharing across functions
  • Accelerate agility and responsiveness
  • Advance innovation and solution creation
  • Etc.

In short: they wanted a platform that would support their cultural change.
They went live with Jive in Q3 of 2009. They then already had 1500 users. At the end of 2009 they had 10000 users.
Their key lessons:
  • Strive for long-term objectives but work in phases and take the time needed
  • Position it as an integrated business platform with a clear business benefit and visible executive legitimation
  • Recruit advocates from core business functions as early adopters and role models. Develop business relevant use cases and educate on community management skills. The whole project was done with 5 people: 1 knowledge management, 2 communication and 2 IT.
  • Simplify business case to avoid complex benefits measurement
  • It is a change project, plan it that way!

Thousands of business conversations every month create business value. This leads to a business case. They collect good examples to build their case.
Other ways of measuring value:
  • The number of conversations related to the number of people who have access. After a year 85% is on board. This is OK, but...
  • … they would like to measure the quality of interactions. This can be done by like/don’t like or rating functionality. But will it work. Will employees judge each other’s work? That’s a journey they are now taking.

Question: You remarked that there is also a classic intranet, besides Jive. How will those relate? Answer by Wolfgang: More content is moving towards Jive. I think information like guidelines will stay on the classic intranet. Information that may not be changed/discussed about. The distinction needs to be clear, because users need to know where to look.

Social computing and the collaborative intranet #epem

RichardHare, British American Tobacco is the next presenter. They have 60000 employees. Richard is a Knowledge, Communication and Collaboration Consultant.
He starts out with the question who loves their intranet? And who’s users love their intranet? Not many hands go up.
Complaints about their intranet:
  • Search takes 20 seconds to return meaningless results
  • Content out of date
  • Difficult to navigate when based on hierarchy

… but people still want sites.

They connected the roll out of the content management tool to the roll out of the new corporate brand. This helped pull things together. (He showed several local intranets. Most looked the same.)
Their intranet only has top navigation, no left-hand navigation. Activity updates in the middle, daily news on top. People-centric navigation.
Evaluation of the set-up was done with senior management based card sorting and benchmarking. To define if people can find things and understand what the labels are called.
Social media at British American Tobacco
  • 1997: online communities based on Notes
  • 2004: blogs
  • 2008: social networking

Reason to start had to do with a 2005 survey telling their employees were more afraid to say what they thought. So, they set up communities. But the users needed encouragement. They set up a workshop and wrote a manual on community building. Communities still weren’t flying. So they tied it to the World Cup 2006 and it helped people open up.
Then they opened up the creation of communities. Then moved over to blogging. Also accompanied with some guidelines.
In 2007 they saw social networking taking up speed. So, in 2008 the set up Connect, which is their internal social networking site. This implicitly leads to a people directory. They made a cool visualization with Gephi to show how BAT is connected.
The survey of 2009 showed that employees value these steps and that they are more open (share their voice more openly).
The whole platform is built in-house, based on Lotus Domino.

Integrating collaboration – linking virtual workspaces with your intranet #epem

Oops, missed the 1st minutes of Neil Morgan, Head of Global Intranet at WWF International (5000 employees).
How did they get to their new collaboration platform? Surveyed users by asking questions and watching the way they worked. Based on the survey’s they came up with personas. They found that lots of work was very labor intensive.
To address their ‘problems’ they turned to Google. People were already using Gmail, Google Docs, etc. They went for Google Apps:
  • Calendars
  • Docs (e.g. Forms), Spreadsheets Presentations
  • Google Sites (best practices, wiki space, etc.)

Neil stresses how really simple it was to set up Google Apps and how simple it is too use. He also shows how well the parts of Google Apps integrate. Search Docs or Search All from one box. Create a document, share it easily and chat about it in the sidebar. Etc.
How do they link all these sites back into the intranet portal. They implemented a newsroom approach on the central intranet. They want the sites to think more in a newsroom way. Write news items locally with links to more info. This is picked up centrally. They also tie the sites together using search (also Google).

Tips from WWF
  • Online collaboration must start with real world collaboration (trust…)
  • You will make mistakes (fail quickly and move on)
  • Promote a culture of openness in teams (share early and often)
Benefits
  • Group editing
  • Self-organization
  • Easy authoring tool (promotes contribution)
  • Collective intelligence
Brand development within WWF is done using storytelling.

Reason to Go Google is costs and the range of services. It’s a platform to build on.

Implementing social media features in intranet for effective employee engagement and internal communication #epem

Mikaela Terhil of Wartisila Corporation is on the stage. They provide lifecycle power solutions.
Wartsila recently allowed employees to access social networking platforms like Facebook from inside the company.
They started by integrating the intranets into one intranet. Then they added social features to the intranet, workspaces and office communicator.
Why social features? They wanted to help employees do their work, find the right employees, connect people together, bring expertise and different perspectives together, share knowledge, etc. In short: knowledge sharing and productivity.
So they now have:
  • People search > search over all profile information. Employees fill in profile info, blogposts etc are automatically related, you can also follow others
  • Compass profile > this is personal blogs, which is planned but not implemented yet
  • Personal site > collects and shows all your personal information on the intranet (not MySite, but MS profiles)
  • Poll > to get a feel of what the organization thinks of a certain topic
  • Workspaces > collaborate within a restricted group
  • Wartsila wiki > needs more promoting
  • We are the Doers blog (this is not personal blogging but news with comments, they’re working on that)
  • Discussion board > needs more promoting

All this is based on Sharepoint 2007. She closed off this section by telling stories about successful use of their platform. How it supports their employees to be productive.
They launched social features in June 2010 in the following way:
  • Highlight and banner on the intranet homepage
  • Global news, blogpost
  • Introductory site
  • Training and demo
  • Polling users

Mikaela also relates to how she finds that new culture can be enhanced. True employee engagement is gained through a culture of open internal communication. This should be reflected by the tools (e.g. profile is open to all).
She sees several challenges/opportunities. Adoption rate is not fast everywhere. How to get more on board? How to change the mindset of some senior management? They would like to link this platform more with business goals.

Overall strategy for employee portal evolution into an enterprise 2.0 platform and integration of effective use of social media for employee engagement and internal communications #epem

Next up is Viviane Dupre of Bombardier.
Bnet evolution will be done in a more formal and structured approach. It’s more than intranet; an enterprise 2.0 implementation.
They have high level management buyin for the project. A heavily organized governance model.
Current version of the Bnet employee portal is from 2004 with less than $100.000 investment. It replaced 100 plus intranets. They have 350 content managers. Minimal governance at the content level. Bnet has been identified as a business critical application.
In May 2009 they did a survey. 5000 employees responded to the survey. 64% gave a negative rating of the home page. They also asked what employees actively used on the internet. Like Youtube, LinkedIn. 42% were contributors in 2009.
This project was also used to improve employee engagement. By empowering employees, be recognized. Increased employee engagement should lead to increased customer engagement.
They wrote up a mission for the Bnet. Stressed enabling and increasing productivity.
Three pillars of Bnet: Communication, Personalization, Collaboration. She does not use the work ‘social’ because of the negative connotations it has to some.
Bombardier also uses Wordpress for their blog platform. They are working on a internal Youtube. Not so much for formal communications, but for human interest.
Personalization means LinkedIn type profiles on the company directory. Picture, short bio, blogposts, expertise, etc. Employees can fill in what they want.
Collaboration is about the deployment of collaboration tools to support dialogue, professional networking, communities of practice and collective intelligence.
They are still researching if their new platform actually contributed to improved employee engagement. The results have just been collected.
What are the business benefits?
  • Increased employee engagement
  • Adapt to new reality. Viviane also relates to what young employees expect of corporate tools.
  • More efficient use of staff
  • Lower computing costs
  • Reduced travel expenses.

They consider themselves as followers and tap into experiences from other companies, wrt. tools, business case, etc.
They chose Sharepoint as their defacto platform. (This was decided by IT…) She's not sure if SP will replace WP, but SP will be overall platform.

Intranet governance and implementation of guidelines for the right and efficiënt use of social media tools and intranet apps #epem

Next up is Sean McNiven, SAP. Sean is head of the Social Web.
Sean starts out with Web 0.0. Web 0.0 was and is the coffee machine. It’s still their running communication platform. This platform is now also happening on the web. The rules are practically the same, says Sean. So the guidelines are the same as well. Be honest, be respectful and add value, don’t pick fights, separate opinion from fact, be human, etc.
A brief history of their employee network: 1995-1997 DMS and structure; 1998 SAPNet Communication, Team Collaboration and self service; 205 Corporate Portal based on Netweaver; 2007-200 Corporate Portal, Relaunch Enhanced UI and Personalization; 2010 SAP Employee Network, SAP Corporate Portal + integrated external tools and social media / Enterprise search.
The governance changed considerably over the years. From open/decentral to closed/central in 2007. Now the governance is hybrid: open groups, governed communities, expiry of unused groups.
SAP has many modules that integrate into one intranet. SAP’s intranet is the (only) way to get to SAP information and communication.
They use the Wordpress platform for SAP Internal News. The Star rating is important for them to give feedback to the Communications department. They allow comments on the news item as well.
Remark: SAP sees that the border between internal and external is blurring rapidly.
SAP is using Jive for their communities and groups. Alfresco is their backend. Communities and groups consist of online documents (wiki-ish), discussions, polls or blogs.
SAP Talk is their internal microblogging platform. They use StatusNet. They want it to be easy to post internally and/or externally at the same time.
They also use Wordpress for employee crowdsourcing. They use it to ask or vote for questions or suggestions you’d like to see addressed at Global All Hands meetings and during special information campaigns. Voting is anonymous, posting and voting can be done in your name and anonymously. They see more and more people posting in their name, showing increasement in trust.
(By the way, I just asked Sean if they use this for ideation as well. He said they used social media in general for ideation. They also installed an extension to Jive for ideation. But that didn't work well.)
Video sharing is done, called SAPTube. Everyone can upload videos.
Sean also points to their social media guidelines. He remarks they are getting shorter and shorter. It should be one page max. Or as Microsoft says: Don't be stupid.

Strategic intranet governance and business driven adoption of social media for increasing value @ BT #epem

Wow, that’s a whole mouthful! This is the first presentation at Employee Portal Evolution Masters 2010 in Berlin. I’ll be live-blogging through this conference. The subtitle of the conference is Strategic business approach for employee portal lifecycle management and integration of social media in rapidly changing digital environment’. Another mouth-ful!

Mark Morrell, Intranet Manager of BT has the honors of opening this conference. The title of his talk is the title of this blogpost.
BT’s intranet is about 16 years old. It started in 1994. It’s available to 140.000+ employees including 3rd parties. All information and applications are online. They can access it wherever they want. They use it for collaboration online too: blogs, wikis, podcasts, RSS, Twitter. Their intranet was also a push towards a more paperless office.
They benchmark their intranet through the Intranet Benchmarking Forum. And they’re one of the best…
Why did they start using social media? Social media is technology embedded in social behavior. Social networks, global data networks, etc are BT’s business drivers!
Social media also meets the demands of the younger employees. Nearly 90% of BT people under 25 use social media. Less than 50% of BT people over 50 use social media. Mark sees people are blending work with personal use of social media (also relates to more BT employee working from home when they want). For that reason they use social media that is already available as much as possible. Like Twitter. They therefore use one persona not different identities for all use of social media. So, there’s not a personal and work Twitter account for Mark.
Social media external is used to interact and develop new relationships with my customers, partners and suppliers. They don’t use it as a marketing tools.
Mark stresses in general social media tools are easy but you should also make sure they stay that way. Also w.r.t. social media guidelines. They have guidelines for using social media. E.g. no anonymous posting. Balance guidelines with benefits as well as risks.
Benefits are:
  • Finding the right person
  • Finding the right information
  • Joining a community of interest
  • Sharing/creating views and opinions

They want to actively research the benefits people have gained by use of social media.
Mark walks us through their intranet. You can find much of this on his blog. No commenting on BT news yet. Employees can submit their news (like birthdays) but it is curated. They show the last 3 wiki-pages, blogposts and podcasts on their Intranet homepage.
They have about 700 active blogs (at least 1 update every month).
The BT wiki (based on Mediawiki) is related to as their encyclopedia. Navigating through blogposts and wikipages is done with tagclouds a.o.
BT also has regular CEO chats (with the real CEO).
Mark also tells it took quite some time to convince senior-management to allow and adopt social media inside and outside the company.

A Holistic Approach to Enabling the Collaborative Enterprise #e20s

photo (2) lee Lee Bryant closed the Enterprise 2.0 Summit with a talk about Social Business.

Where's Enterprise 2.0 headed next? It's in the direction of providing real business value.

Enterprise 2.0 has been adopted at least a bit by most organizations. There's a nice spread of use cases, showed by research supported by Headshift.

Lee sees Enterprise 2.0 as a Trojan mice for organizational change. Small but impressive changes to the organization.

Enterprise 2.0 is still in the early phase, patchy and tool-centric (like the KM wave was in the beginning).

We're looking for quantifiable business improvements, like:

  • lower operational costs
  • networked productivity
  • business agility
  • effective management (move away from information hostages: businesses run by writing and moving report up and down the ladder)
  • customer centricity (Listen! But many companies lack a structure to socialize what you're learned by listening)

Where is business practice going wrong?

  1. people, outdated view of motivation, behavior. Do we trust them. Trust is cheaper than control. We still have no real understanding of viral behavior inside organizations.
  2. process, an expensive way to orchestrate activity
  3. technology, a critique of the IT function. Businesses are spending lots of time on very basic stuff, like ERP/CRM. Light-weight processes with tools so employees can get things done. We used to believe that huge automation would lead to huge productivity improvements, which it did not.

What have we learned that can help here?

  • human behavior, spread of influence in networks
  • aggregation, flow, network effects, force multipliers
  • open, collaborative working contexts
  • designing for emergence and evolution

Moving beyond e2.0 adoption:

  • social business program
    • platform thinking for underlying capabilities (shows a really interesting picture of how this platform adds up technically)
    • this will lead to an app store for every enterprise
    • use cases and local, situated software
    • e.g. better coping tools for information overload

Now he moves over to sharing open data to change behavior. Now the processes to send data up and down the organization is not real-time and not open. If it would be, every employee could change their behavior in increments.

Another future trends is social experience design: energizing networks. Lots of measuring and monitoring and changing on the fly. This could give you loads of information about the amount of engagement there is.

Finally, there are new opportunities for leadership. Leadership is not obsolete, but it will change. Or E2.0 helps business leaders to reach out. Intimacy at scale.

This can create meaningful change in organizations. It's not a full-frontal battle, or it shouldn't be. But it should weave in with the existing networks and structures. From biology we know we only need 5% to create flock!

Great end to the Enterprise 2.0 Summit!

Enterprise 2.0 and Business Processes #e20s

photo (5) Some notes from the open space about Enterprise 2.0 and business processes:

If you don't impact the business process with Enterprise 2.0 you won't unlock value.

If you introduce a new tool, you can't make them use it. Tools should fit in their daily routine. If not, users will easily reject it.

There were differences about using force to get people to adopt Enterprise 2.0 tooling. Most said, Don't use force, make it voluntary. But it does depend on the type of e2.0 project. For instance, an example was given about social project management. In this case you agree to do project management in this way. But with communities using (a bit of) force is restrictive.

Helping people use e2.0 tools and integrating them in their work processes requires patience and lots of training. Sometimes you even have to start by explaining what a webbrowser is. Focus on the e2.0 concepts not on the tools. Most people understand the concepts better than the tools... Enterprise 2.0 projects almost always start as push, not pull. Start by solving daily problems. Because most people don't ask for e2.0 concepts and tools.

Context is a key word in this area. Linking people (expertise), information, processes and tools. Formal processes, information need context to understand them.

We also see a role for e2.0 in the definition of new formal processes and improve them continuously. Basically most of us are unconsciously looking for improvements to business processes.

Social tools and formal business tools are not or hardly integrated. (At least we don't have examples... We do see vendors moving into that space, like SAP.) People are not middleware. Extra tools are see as a barrier for knowledge workers. E.g. they live in their email. Every extra tool for sharing, storing, etc is seen as a hassle.

Also see Emanuelle Quintarelli's notes here.

Challenges of the Organizational Setup of the Enterprise 2.0 #e20s

JP Rangaswami couldn't make it... Too bad. So his talk has been turned into a discussion between Frank La Pinta, prof. Joachim Niemeier, Jamil Ouaj and Christian Wuerdemann.

Don't have much to blog about this discussion. Not that it wasn't interesting for sure. One important thing to pass on is that the European companies in the panel have not changed their organizational structure based on their e2.0 implementations. The middle management does not have a new role, according to the panel.

There was lots of discussion in the audience about this topic via Twitter.

Transparency - A double-edge sword #e20s

photo (2) berg Oscar Berg on the stage! He'll talk about Transparency as the double-edged sword. Or: Governing Enterprise 2.0 Risk.

Knowledge work, ideas and the like are like black boxes. We can't look into them. We are finding ways to open up these black boxes.

Increasing transparency in organizations and between organizations decreases risks and enables value-creation.

Oscar points to two cases in which they tried to increase workplace awareness using blogs and microblogs.

Oscar remarks that many of the legal issues we are now concerned with are the same as when email was introduced.

Usability issues leads to workarounds. Employees start to email everything, label everything as Confidential, copy (locally) to ensure access, share with USB sticks.

Lesson 1: There's a real challenge in finding the right balance between security and privacy.

Lesson 2: We need a balance between control and empowerment. Governance is good, but it should not tip over in such a way that employees don't feel empowered. Control and empowerment should walk hand in hand: policies vs. training, restrictions vs. tools, control vs. trust. If there are too many restrictions people will refrain from sharing.

Lesson 3: Transparency must go both ways. Transparency is good, but users should be explained clearly what happens to their information. Facebook e.g. is not transparent both ways.

A culture of trust is more secure than a culture of control.

Best Practices for Regaining Business Agility #e20s

photo (2) cheechin CheeChin Liew (BASF) is up on the stage.

Interesting how CheeChin compares the development cycles in the organization with the development of communication tools. The increasing speed in product development cycles at BASF requires different communication skills and tools.

Connect.BASF consists of three pillars:

  1. networking. Employees can be visible, profiles, in communities.
  2. knowledge sharing. Communities (there is overlap with point 1), tags and search etc.
  3. collaboration. Blogs, wiki's etc.

It is a global platform.

Ho did they start? It started in Communications (by Cordelia Krooß). They convinced to start a steering committee around this topic (@shake ) with a board member as sponsor. CheeChin was in R&D. He had launched wiki's there. E2.0 was not started by IT. IT came in later. This project is now permanent.

In the launch phase they focused on IT implementation a lot. They have connect.BASF days with external, inspiring speakers. They do a lot of demo-ing and presenting. Consulting is also part of the job, helping departments/groups understand e2.0 and use tools.

Up to the pilot phase BASF had 1000 users. Lots of communications up till then after that they stopped communications.

CheeChin shows in numbers how Connect.BASF went viral: 15000 users! But signing up is not the whole game, he warns. Growth has been nicely spread out over the regions.

BASF's communities grew emergently. "Don't coach them from the beginning." They have 4 types: experts and professions (U4O), projects and working teams (O4O), social networking (U4U), initiatives and services (O4U). (U=users, O=organization)

Best practices for adoption:

  • people-oriented and voluntary character
  • visible commitment from top management
  • leadership by advocates and community builders
  • transfer of communities and workflows
  • sharing of benefits and success stories

Exploring the Adoption Archetypes #e20s

Luis Suarez, Lee Bryant, Alexander Richter and Alexander Stocker will discuss adoption archetypes.

The Alexander's kick off with an overview of their research. They point back to the research that was done on Groupware in the past. This is a basis for the research on Enterprise 2.0.

Archetype nr. 1: Exploration. Continuously identifying feasible usage scenarios for IT-services which are suitable for any use.

Archetype nr 2: Promotion. Coordinated communication and targeted training of IT-services with focus on certain modes of use.

Their research shows: Wikis and weblogs have gained maturity, making promotion the dominant strategy in corporate settings.

Microblogging has the explanation strategy. Research will continue to see if that changes.

Luis takes the stage. Talks about BlueIQ - driving social software adoption at IBM. IBM started with social stuff 40 years ago with their forums. But in the modern sense of social software they started in 2001. Points to the whitepaper about BlueIQ.

Evangelism of social software is done bottom-up at IBM, with 1600 IBM volunteering ambassadors. This relates to a community building program with a teach the teacher program. And their execs are on board!

Stages:

  1. see value
  2. recognize business use
  3. all together now
  4. integrate workflows
  5. shift perspective

IBM is between 3 and 4. But in some parts of the business not even in 1.

But along all the stage levels make sure you have governance and guidelines, focus on adoption, focus on measurement and work on the infrastructure. End goal: the social business.

The future for IBM is to focus on Enterprise Workflows, even outside of the organization.

Discussion:

  • Lee Bryant chips in. Large number of companies have reached first base. They have a blog or a wiki. But we're still in the realm of adoption of tools. Lee sees the two adoption archetypes. There's no prescriptive way to go. Evolutionary improvement is what we need. We need more self-propelling growth. We should keep the difference between the web 2.0 and enterprise 2.0 landscape. Open data is important. Orchestrate real-time data in companies to lead to behavior change. Also study user interaction to influence systems and change. Think deeply about individual and collective behaviors. These will be the source of future techniques.

Avoiding Enterprise 2.0 Pitfalls #e20s

Next talk/discussion with Rob Howard, Luis Suarez and Frank Schoenefeld.

Frank gives a list of 7 pitfalls of Enterprise 2.0.

  1. Don't care at all. Frank says: You are obliged to care.
  2. Since Enterprise 2.0 is freeform, emergent and easy to use - just let it happen. Frank says: in a closed system entropy/disorder always increases (2nd law of thermodynamics)
  3. It's not about technology... Frank says: It is.
  4. It's about culture... Frank says: It is not.
  5. You can not measure the ROI of it. Frank says: You can if you want to and have to.
  6. Information overload kills. Frank says: It does indeed. Shield yourself.
  7. With Enterprise 2.0 we've found the holy grail for everything (in the organization).

Discussion:

  • Rob disagrees fundamentally with the thesis that it is about technology. The big successful companies have a business objective and then select tools to be successful. Analytics is important (they should map to a strategy). Rob missed 'resources' in the pitfall list. You need to assign resources to achieve your business goals with technology.
  • Rob points to Texas Instruments to give an example that has 'community' in their strategic goals.
  • Luis adds 'education' to the list of pitfalls. Train people to use the tools. And 'governance' is a topic as well. Bottom-up, top-down. Not everything goes bottom-up. Make sure you have some guidelines in place (- this is not the same as mandating, says Luis). Luis also disagree with the fact that the tools are the problem. Fear is also a big pitfall. Are you experimenting?
  • Rob comments that Enterprise 2.0 is still a young industry. Luis says a recent study showed that in Spain only 3% of the companies used social media.

Overcoming Cultural Boundaries #e20s

photo (3) Next talk by Bertrand Duperrin, Ellen Trude, Emanuele Quintarelli and Mike Thompson (Headshift).

Bertrand kicks off by focusing on Cultural issues in general, between Europe and the US and it's implications for Enterprise 2.0:

  • self protection: culture as an excuse
  • local identity protection vs globalization and mergers
  • different attitudes towards autonomy, rules, hierarchy...
  • philosophy of work
  • trust/mistrust vs companies, colleagues...
  • will engage with colleagues
  • organization boundaries that reinforce cultural ones
  • who said legal?

Bertrand says this is a major issue and it's a good thing we are discussing it here. Every country with its own culture has to find it's own approach wrt e2.0.

Now Mike Thompson (Headshift) who collaborated in a large research project on Enterprise 2.0. This research is still going on. First results can be found here. He says the research shows that it's more related to company culture than country culture if and how enterprise 2.0 concepts and tools fit. Ellen doesn't agree with this and does see country difference. On the other hand, Emanuelle agrees with Mike relating to the situation in Italian companies. Emanuelle says these cultural issues were there way before E2.0. And to him the biggest challenge is to demonstrate what's in it for them when rolling out new tools in general.

Agreement between the speakers is that culture is important. If it's a country or company issue is still open for debate/research.

Manager 2.0 - Key Elements of Leadership Concepts in an Enterprise 2.0 #e20s

photo (2) I'm at the Enterprise 2.0 Summit in Frankfurt! I'll be live tweeting through this summit. I'll also try to summarize the talks as they pass by.

The first talk is about "Manager 2.0" by prof. Richard Collin (Grenoble Ecole de Management) and Rolf Schmidt-Holtz (CEO Sony).

Collin wonders if 2.0 is a good extension in Enterprise 2.0. 'It's just a version number'. It doesn't stress enough the future enterprise will be totally different.

A new space is emerging. Not in the economy of good anymore, but in the economy of information. (Before the economy of good there was the economy of territory.) The north point is not north, Dow Jones, but 'you'.

Information is the new steam. The industrial age is passe. And it's moving fast. He tells about how long it took the book and the pc to move into our world. And relates that to the speed in which the Internet moved into our world. This has implications for leadership!

How should be define leadership in this new information era? Here's one: a leader can be defined by an ability to get others to be connected willingly.

Leader for the Enterprise 2.0 era:

  • value bricolage strategically
  • design tinkering
  • etc.

He's the farmer of trust and a skills harvester.

Trust, walk the talk (is critical), you have to be what you see, be transparent, imagine, recognize and give (say merci!), to update and be update, to dare, focus on IT usage and not on the tools, to stimulate, to coach, solidarity and humility.

photo Now, Rolf Schmidt is up. What defines a great leader?

What defines a great leader? asks Rolf Schmidt, CEO Sony. They are good communicators, good colleagues.

Listening is important. The CEO don't know anything anymore. The distance between them and employees is too big.

You have the power, but don't have a knowledge, this goes for most CEO's. You have to be engaged, says Rolf Schmidt.

Great leaders rarely come out of big companies. Great innovations come from others, smaller companies usually, with constant dialogue.

Hardly any can come up with a great idea on their own. Points to the book and research by Steven Johnson, 'Where do good ideas come from?' Great ideas come to being by sharing.

Social networks (esp. Facebook) are key. The company is a social network. They developed an internal tool, Just Connect.

Discussion:

  • Schmidt: Kill the old people... ;-) There's a fantastic young people coming up. Work hard, great marks at university, but they lack common sense. You need that to be a leader. You have to understand people. You have to be forgiving. Personality, you have to learn that at home, because you don't seem to learn that at university. People don't want to be impressed, but embraced.
  • Schmidt stresses that we should stop spending time on email and instead spend time on thinking. Then communicate.
  • Large companies will continue to exist. But for them to succeed they need to be authentic. Organize yourself in smaller, leaner cells. Decentralize. Give them daily decision power. But you need good people. That's what it comes down to.

Enterprise 2.0 The Book by @amcafee, A Review

photo (1) Some time ago I said: Vacation First. I wanted to share my review of professor Andrew McAfee's book Enterprise 2.0 before I went on vacation. That didn't work out. I wish I could have written this review sooner, because the sooner you read this book the better. I'll tell you why.

Andrew McAfee coined the term 'enterprise 2.0' (in 2006) and has been one of the leading thinkers in the space of applying web 2.0 concepts and tools (or 'collaborative media' as McAfee likes to call them) to the workplace. This book summarizes his thinking over the years. Of course he's been blogging and speaking about this topic. So I was wondering if this book would bring me new insights. Well it did. And to me this is why I love books. You know thinking about the topic you're reading about in a book won't stop as soon as the book has been published. But a book does give you a summary of past thinking and concepts for future thinking. And all that in a limited amount of pages (instead of the endless amount of Internet pages...).

I like the way the book starts. It could have started by describing the new social tools and their underlying concepts. But it doesn't. Chapter 2 starts with several real-life cases we can all relate to. These cases make us reflect on information sharing and gathering problems in organizations. How can be solve them? What is the real underlying issue?

The next chapter goes on to explain the big shift. Is Web 2.0 really a paradigm shift or is it an incremental change? Or even just a hype? And how does this shift relate to businesses? Will it have effect only on the Internet or will it also change the way we do business?

Only then does McAfee go back to the issues mentioned in chapter 2. This interesting chapter explains the research on 'tie strength', pointing to Granovetter's work a.o. (which you should read as well!). Subsequently McAfee picks up every case of ch. 2 and shows how Enterprise 2.0 concepts and tools addresses the needs, whereas 1.0 solutions couldn't do the trick. I think this chapter will be an 'Aha moment' for many readers, definitely for those that are new to these concepts.

This book contains information for people in different stages of understanding and implementing Enterprise 2.0. The book describes 'technologies and technology based communities' like blogs, Facebook, etc. For many there is nothing new here. But what I like about the book is McAfee's honesty. McAfee describes how he got interested in Web 2.0 and how his thinking about Enterprise 2.0 started. He didn't 'get it' from the start, but slowly and steadily started to understand and research it. I think this applies to most people in this space. Almost none can say: I understood it from the start. Most experts in this field started out as sceptics. But then made the leap and started blogging, for instance, and by using social media started to understand and be excited about them. This fact is inspiring to all who just learned about Web 2.0 or Enterprise 2.0. It will hopefully get them started more quickly.

This also relates to one of the last chapters of the book: Red Herrings and Long Hauls. Many think Enterprise 2.0 is an instant success. You just set up a (micro)blog and your organization will change and speed up dramatically. McAfee warns us for this and clearly shows we should organize for the long haul. I think this also underlines the need for management and strategic choices to reap the long term benefits of Enterprise 2.0. Enterprise 2.0 requires deep changes in thinking about organizations, management, employees (users) and tools. Take time to help the organization understand these new concepts and tools.

Furthermore he also points to interesting research telling us that new tools have to be 10 times better than the tools we're using for them to be adopted. So, how much better is microblogging than email? Patience is necessary. Evangelizing, demonstrating, training and explaining as well.

This chapter also addresses the main obstacles (red herrings) to Enterprise 2.0 adoption. One topic I'd like to mention here is McAfee's research shows that "most people know how to act professionally in job-related environments, including digital ones". And therefore he has hardly seen Enterprise 2.0 adoption lead to security breaches like employees sharing IP sensitive information. He also points to the CIA using Enterprise 2.0 concepts and tools. They concluded "that the benefits of better and wider sharing of intelligence information outweigh the risks."

I love the way McAfee advises us to work on the adoption of Enterprise 2.0 concepts and tools. He starts out by saying we should connect with believers. Employees already convinced of the importance of social media and their use for organizations. Have them help educate and evangelize. Another important point he makes is to connect to the existing tool set. We use email a lot. So start there.

This book definitely calls for a follow-up! Topics for the next book could be about the following:

  1. There's lots of discussion about how the social tools relate to formal business and information processes. How this can be done and companies are actually doing it, is a great topic to systematically write down in a book. This would extend what McAfee says about 'in the flow' and 'above the flow' on page 184.
  2. There's some debate about what comes after Web 2.0. O'Reilly and Battelle call it 'Web Squared'. What does this mean for Enterprise 2.0? What would Enterprise Squared be? Or is it already there? Lots of thinking is being done on this topic as well. Again, this thinking could be summarized in a book as well.

This is not a complete summary. I picked out things I found very interesting. Just to show you I really enjoyed reading this book. I have advised many to read this book and hope this review will get you to do so as well.

Thank you for writing this book and sharing your insights, Andrew McAfee!

Note: This review has also been posted on Amazon in the review section of the book.