Social Intranets – Enterprise 2.0, Open Business, Social Software in corporate communications

[dropcap type=”1″]G[/dropcap]etting enterprises ready for social business, using the strengths of networked communication and connected collaboration – are these serious promises towards a business world with more openness, trust, meaning, and therefore also efficiency, productivity and innovation?
Many Enterprise 2.0 practitioners are a bit frustrated by now. There are some first experiences, collaboration tools, social intranets have been rolled out, enterprise social networks have been introduced and welcomed, but then? So far, it did not keep us from business as usual.

Enterprise 2.0, Social Business: low adoption, slow adaptation

Employee engagement rates are low, enterprise 2.0 initiatives and social intranets remain lonesome islands and evangelists are talking about change, new ways of leadership and of transforming companies in more meaningful, more energetic places. I think change is one of the most abused terms of our time. Change makes you look for a result, for a point in time when you can say: now we’ve done it, now we’re different. This point will not come.

[pull_quote_right]Pragmatic guide to Enterprise 2.0 and Social Business integration: keep your vision, enjoy small steps and use what you have.[/pull_quote_right]But as experts helping companies to unterstand open business, networks and connections, we create opportunities. It will take many opportunities to make a difference. And it’s the sad thing with opportunities, that those that make the biggest difference are those that you don’t take – if they keep you busy regretting.

So one the one side, if you’re into open business, enterprise 2.0 and networked, connected organisations, you have to go for the big vision – don’t loose your focus. But on the other  hand: enjoy and acknowledge the small things.

  • Be happy when a few colleagues start to use comments or ratings on the intranet.
  • Support colleagues who start internal groups and communities – even if they are not community management genii.
  • Have a clear guidance for what you want to achieve through openness and collaboration, and lead by example. Or get more important people to lead by example.
  • Use what you have and make it work – don’t wait for the magic tech-solution for your intranet or your enterprise social network. And don’t use missing AD’s or complicated network issues as an excuse.
  • And figure out how to make use of new connections, new friends and fresh ideas. We can just tell you that it makes sense, and we can tell you many examples – but if it comes to you, you are the expert.

How to get started with social intranets

  • To set up enterprise 2.0 or social business initiatives, be sure to manage your expectations – change and networking will not happen over night, probably not even within a year.
  • Get in touch with someone who has done it before. – Every project is different, benchmarks are rare. It’s easy to get lost and confused about the value of your own project.
  • Think about leadership and don’t confuse it with management. If you want change, you have to lead, no matter who you are.
  • Find out what makes sense for you and your company. Ok, being connected is fun, but make it more specific. What exactly are you aiming for? And how does it make sense for your company?

We have some experience in enabling companies to become connected, in helping them to become networked on the inside and on the outside. Get in touch. Or just continue reading.

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