What did I learn?Andrew's talk deserves a fairly long post (though with very random thoughts). His address was in 3 parts; the definition of Enterprise 2.0, the "state of the art" as he saw it and the things to avoid ("how to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory")
The Definition of Enterprise 2.0
- Involves use of emergent technology or new uses of technology or social software;
- Solves business problems and answers business goals
The State of the ArtAndrew defined the state of the art of Enterprise 2.0 under 6 major headings:
- People want to help each other
- Enterprise software needs to be people centric not document centric
- The paranoia about risks is not senseless, but overrated. Most risks never materialise because in the enterprise, you don't have the luxury of being anonymous like on the web. People are unlikely to do the "wrong" things. In fact they never do it.
- The entry barrier for people to want to help each other, needs to be low -- eg: Twitter. People can help each other and do that within just 140 characters!
- There's rarely one best way to do things in today's business world -- the era of best practices is dying.
- People need to have the ability to self select and self organise when contributing content and deciding how and when to collaborate.
- We need to limit workflow - it can't take several levels of approval to do something simple.
- Structure shouldn't be imposed. Tools need to facilitate structure and structure should develop over time.
- Example: Innocentive, the idea of crowdsourced innovation, where its only a matter of getting a different person to take a look at your problem and solve it for much less than the solution is really worth!
- Getting more eyeballs to look at a problem often generates more solutions.
- Expertise is emergent, not identified. Anyone can be an expert and people are recognised for their contribution and not their position/ credentials.
- Communities should be the one that people want. Nothing should be imposed. (Something someone said "Communities of interest" vs "Communities of Practice")
- Harness the collective. The wisdom of crowds makes decision making really powerful.
- Peer decision making, peer reviews, peer innovation and peer feedback make ultimate sense (given the number of eyeballs looking at the issue!)
- Andrew gave the example of the prediction market's analysis of the Obama campaign where crowdsourced probabilities resulted in a more accurate prediction of the election results than the most sophisticated analysis by expert statisticians.
- Enterprise 2.0 gives you the opportunity to "narrate your work" to the extent that you can all of a sudden demonstrate your expertise.
- It creates for better social connections. You are connected to the right people sooner.
- It offers the opportunity to benefit from varied perspectives on a certain topic.
- Results of a McKinsey study about web 2.0 tools shows:
- Access to knowledge 68%
- Access to internal experts 43%
- Employee satisfaction 35%
- Increased innovation 25%
- Increased customer satisfaction 43%
- Its a bad idea to sit out the Web 2.0 phenomenon.
- We need to look at technology with a fresh set of eyes.
- We can't go back to "business as usual" after this recession.
- Businesses need to leverage technology as one of its key components.
Things to Avoid
- Don't try to replace email: Instead think of things that email cant do.
- Don't accentuate the negatives: Instead point out risks while accentuating the huge business benefits.
- Don't fall in love with features: Start simple, iterate through the solution
- Don't declare war on the enterprise: Its a bad sales strategy to alienate the very people that'll sponsor such a thing. Organisations need structure to function
- Don't build walled gardens: Instead allow multiple groups to flourish in the same place. Moving between groups needs to be seamless.
- Don't overuse the word "social": It creates the wrong connotations for the business; especially in a time when we're seeking tangible results.