As a follow up post, during the rest of the HR Tech conference, I looked for more social vendors and found them. Yammer and ThoughFarmer was there. As were a number of others that added Social into their mix of HR offerings.
I even learned that the company I mentioned last time, Peoplefluent, bought SocialText – not too shabby. It was refreshing to see so many companies trying to add it in at various degrees.
But that is from the vendor side. Not from the HR side. In fact, watching a panel discussion it hit me even harder. The people talking about Social didn’t have a clue about it. But the audience didn’t know any better.
So, I was wrong.
For years I thought SOCIAL should live in HR. It seems natural, right? We are talking, in essence, about employee performance in many different flavors.
But during this conference I had a light of understanding. It is one that has come to me before, but never with this much clarity.
Enterprise 2.0, this type of collaboration, cannot be used in context of how we have done business for years, and certainly not with the same rules. THIS MUST BE DONE FROM SCRATCH – from a totally new thought pattern. That is the only way you can do Social correctly without it being unduly influenced by the inefficient methods and traditions of the past.
It’s is not to say that HR or IT or Learning or Corporate Communications or another department can’t lead their organizations in Social. In fact I have seen some do it well (Marsh, Lowes). But they must do it with a completely different look outlook. As long as it is focused on the people and not the software (not that software isn’t a critical piece), I think any group could do it.
In The Innovators Dillema by Clayton Christiansen he talks about disruptive innovation, which fits with Enteprise 2.0. For it to succeed, one of the “rules” is to allow them to play by their own rules and become detached from the culture of the mother organization. This way they have full latitude to exploreand discover their own rules and values.
For social collaboration to work without being steamrolled by the culture of the organization, this is what needs to happen. In the organizations that have been successful, this is what I have seen happen.
(Note: If you haven’t read the book, do so now. Even if you don’t think it will be relevant to your work, you will be surprised.)