If you haven’t heard of Social Business yet, you’d better listen now. The way you think and do your job may be changing. There is no longer a need to spend all your time in meetings to gather input, discuss ideas or even make decisions. Don’t get me wrong, there is a time and place for sit-downs, face-to-face and other traditional means of communication; however, if you want to attract young new talent to your business and bring on the freshest of minds, you need to incorporate social business. Think about it: today’s college and high school students want instant communication. They want quick back-and-forth dialogue via some form of instant messaging. They want to be able to post an idea or picture and discuss it over time as the idea is shared with colleagues.
The more people sit in meetings, interviews of candidates, etc. the more they realized they sometimes need time to process things. How many times have you left your two hour meeting and thought, ‘Oh, I wish I would have said this,’ or ‘I wish I would have thought of that?’ It happens a lot, right? It’s because most people need time to process new information, and don’t often take time when in the presence of others to look at new ideas from different angles, and then go on to present their ideas on the matter. When sitting in a meeting, it’s easy to start by hearing one side, deciding, ‘Yeah, that makes sense,’ and then later regretting it. Or, you could find you wasted all that time, because now you are back at square one all over again.
So what is the point? Social Software – IBM Connections, Yammer, Jive, etc. – all give you ways to discuss topics of concern, read arguments, present your own and collaborate back and forth. It gives you a breeding ground for new ideas as well as the ability to really take a conversation and make it rich. Once everyone has had time to discuss numerous ideas and topics, you get together to put the final ideas in motion. The beauty of this concept? It can be done from anywhere, at any time: from a computer at home or the office, from a tablet while sitting at your kid’s practice, or from a smart phone sitting at a red light. Collaboration happens everywhere, not just at a table in the office. What you need to do is provide a way to allow your employees to take advantage of this concept.
As we start the New Year, what is your company’s initiative to become a more Social Business? Do you have plans to implement software like IBM Connections? If not, why? What’s your concern? I’d love to hear more.