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Category: Posted: March 10, 2014 0 comments
millennialsYou’ve heard of millennials right? Those weird looking new people that are starting to enter our organizations? Countless articles have already been written about them but the tone seems to be one of “freaking out.” Millennials are being painted as these type of far-off aliens who are going to be inhabiting our world and changing everything. So, let me assure you that there is no need to panic. Yes, it’s true, millennials will be the majority of the workforce in the next few years and yes, this does mean introducing new attitudes and ways of working and thinking about work. But there are three reasons why you shouldn’t freak out…  Read the article
Category: Posted: December 05, 2013 0 comments

five piecesWhen it comes to the future of work there are a few key trends which business leaders need to pay attention to. Understanding these trends will allow organizations to better prepare and adapt to the changes which are impacting the way we work. These five trends are: 1) changing behaviors which are being shaped by social media entering the enterprise 2) new collaborative technologies 3) a shift to the “cloud” 4) millennials soon becoming the majority workforce and 5) mobility and “connecting to work.”

Behaviors shaped by social media entering the enterprise

Much of what we are seeing inside of our organizations as it relates to “social” collaboration is being fueled by what is happening in the consumer web. Technologies such as… Read the article
Category: Posted: December 05, 2012 0 comments

Based on a research report Chess Media Group released last year on the State of Enterprise 2.0 Collaboration, the most common types of IT resistance to collaboration are: it’s not a priority, there are security issues or threats, no manpower, and no budget.  Let’s take a look at each one in more detail and explore how to deal with them when they come up.

It’s Not a Priority

As with the manager resistance, fear and lack of education are a factor in why this isn’t a priority.  However, it’s true there are situations in which an organization is focused on other projects and needs to wait until they are completed before investing in something else.  I would recommend asking the IT folks why this isn’t a priority.  I have also found that bringing business and IT professionals together to discuss priorities often makes for interesting and enlightening discussions.  If employees and executives decide that effective collaboration and communication is a priority, IT usually follows.  You don’t want to separate IT from the decision-making process as their approval and input are integral.  Bring them into the conversation and try to understand their perspective.  Sometimes IT leads the collaboration initiative and team members in this department may not all agree on things such as security or feasibility.  Education is also a crucial...

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Category: Posted: November 05, 2012 0 comments
I’m not quite sure when this happened but at some point we began relying more on technology to make decisions for us and less on people.  How many times have we been faced with a situation were a customer service representative tells us, “I’m sorry the system won’t let us do that.”  Oftentimes there is a logical reason for why you need something done or changed and the system just doesn’t allow that to happen so you end up trying to find a workaround which ends up causing more problems in the end.  Most of us experience this daily in one way or another; whether we are dealing with flight upgrades, purchasing a product at a store, or going to the gym.  Technology ultimately drives virtually everything we do.
We rely on technology to tell us how to deal with and how to interact with people which can become a problem. What’s a bigger problem is the fact that people are designing these systems to make sure that the technology keeps us from coloring outside of the lines.
Eventually this will lead to the death of human decision making altogether.  Technology exists to help support human decision making, to provide alternative options, to help analyze decisions, and to help guide the decision making process; not to take it over entirely.  It’s actually a bit scary because if we continue to go down this path it’s hard to not imagine a future where we ultimately just act out the behaviors or actions that technology tells us to.  In other words technology ...  Read the article
Category: Posted: August 14, 2012 0 comments
Every year since 2006 Jane McConnell releases her report on digital workplace trends which is quite an in-depth piece of work.  The most recent one clocking in at over 150 pages of information with online survey data from over 456 organizations around the world!  Her most recent report looks at both the consumer and employee use of social and collaborative technologies.  While it is quite comprehensive I will extract a few pieces of information which I found to be interesting.

As you can see from the image below most organizations are still at the early stages of their enterprise collaboration initiatives. In our report that we released last year we found the same to be true so it looks like not much has changed here.  Although what does seem to be true is that organizations are starting to move up the ladder of maturity.  While 33% of companies still have fragmented...
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Category: Posted: August 02, 2012 0 comments

Metrics aren’t hard to come by, in fact it’s just the opposite, anything can be a metric and that’s a part of the problem.  Organizations today are struggling with trying to understand what they should be measuring and looking at when it comes to enterprise collaboration.  Should they be looking at how many employees are using tools or how many comments are being submitted?  What about how many groups are created or how many ideas are submitted?  Most vendors offer these types of metrics as a part of their reporting and there’s nothing wrong with looking at these metrics if they are the ones you have identified as measures of success.

At the same time though a part of me has always wondered, why bother looking at any metrics at all?  Do they matter?  Would organizations not... Read the article
Category: Posted: May 02, 2012 0 comments

I don’t like reading things like this, I really don’t.  But today I came across a report released by Modern Survey which found that we have a lot of work to do around engaging our employees.  Modern Survey isn’t the first firm to report low engagement numbers, Gallup and Blessing White (along with others) have all found low engagement rates within our organizations.  The questions, approaches, methodology, and data that all of these firms get is different but the trend and overall findings remains the same.  I don’t think we realize how crucial employee engagement within our organizations really is.

Modern Survey measures engagement by asking employees five...  Read the article
Category: Posted: April 17, 2012 0 comments

A little while ago I wrote an article on how employee collaboration and customer collaboration initiatives solve different problems.  I kept hearing about how one was more valuable or had a greater impact on the organization than the other but the truth was that they indeed addressed different needs for the ...  Read the article
Category: Posted: April 09, 2012 0 comments

Around 30 years ago James Prochaska and Carlo DiClemente (professors at the University of Rhode Island) were studying how smokers were giving up their addictions.  During their observations they developed a model called the “Stages of Change Model” or “Transtheoretical Model of Behavior Change.”  I remember reading and hearing about this when I studied economics and psychology at UCSC and thought it actually applies quite well to enterprise collaboration.  This model has in fact been applied to all sorts of behavior changes, not just quitting smoking.

There are five stages: precontemplation, contemplation, preparation, action, maintenance.  When describing the stages I will refer to ... Read the article
Category: Posted: March 29, 2012 0 comments

This post was inspired by a discussion I had with Bert Sandie who is the Director of Technical Excellence at Electronic Arts.

It seems as though nowadays everyone is talking about “gamification” for the enterprise.  For those of you not familiar with the concept, gamification is all around taking game mechanics and concepts and applying them to a business setting.  Think of something like an airline loyalty program or a customer service forum where participants are rewarded and recognized for their contributions but applied to the workplace .  Although we throw around the gamification terms haphazardly, the reality is that there is a lot that is required to understand how games work and what makes...  Read the article