Sunday, June 22, 2008

Enterprise 2.0: Emergent, Agile and Integrated

I am finding it very hard to keep current in the rapidly emergent Enterprise 2.0 world. Fortunately we have active bloggers, consultants, researchers, academics, and practioners sharing their knowledge rapidly globally.

A recent report of AIIM, which researcherd over 441 end users found that most organizations do not have a clear understanding of what Enterprise 2.0 is. This is hardly surprizing to those of us deep into the mud in this transformational paradigm, but it does reaffirm for sure how much more work needs to be done to prepare for the next generation of talent as they grow up from WebKinz to enter the corporate world which is less than 15 years away.

Some of the key findings from their report included:

- 44% of respondents indicated that Enterprise 2.0 is imperative or significant to corporate goals and objectives;
- Another 27% positioned Enterprise 2.0 as having average impact on business goals and success;
- 74% stated they have only a vague familiarity or no clear understanding of Enterprise 2.0. ;

You can join the Enterprise 2.0 peers on the blogs of the authors of this research, Dan Keldsen at BizTechTalk and Carl Frappaolo at TakingAIIM ( and continue to discuss the topic of Enterprise 2.0 in relationship to this research.

I was not able to head down this year to E2.0 in Boston - but for those that could not make it - you will want to check out the podcasts for sure.

One of my Enterprise 2.0 active blogging colleagues, Patti Aklem did attend and below are some of her sharings:

- Simon Revell, of Pfizer,* adopted a “just do it” approach, introducing the tools, creating edgy introductory videos (see “Meet Charlie”), and nurtures the successes;
-Ned Lerner -Sony Computer Enterprises, responded to top-down management directives to use these tools (easy in a company whose business is internet gaming);
- Pete Fields, Wachovia, who developed a concept for an integrated tool set that connected to corporate communications policies, and worked across the organization for 18 months to get buy-in before launching;
- Sean Dennehy and Don Burke, CIA, were inspired by Cal Andres “The Wiki and the Blog” to explore Wikipedia and see how discussion and history pages could naturally support the way that intelligence analysts work;

Andrew McAfee acknowledged that Enterprise 2.0 hasn’t yet taken over the planet, for a variety of reasons:

- The tools are not yet perfected
- Management is impeding adoption in some way
- Users are slow to take up the tools
- There was general agreement that the current use within these organization is less than 10% of the employee populations, but each see that the growth is continuous in a positive direction.

Many of the “lessons learned” from these early adopters will sound quite familiar to those of us who have been on the leading edge of introducing technologies for collaboration and knowledge management into organizations, but there are some new twists.

What works:

- Acknowledge and reward the early adopters and champions
- Pfizer has consultants available to help business groups get started and use tools appropriately
- Change management is essential. Wachovia involved organizational development, organizational pyschologists, and corporate communications, but still underestimated the difficulty of traction beyond the early adopters
- Look for ways to implement the tools “in the flow,” as part of work. Look especially for existing work processes that can be vastly improved and implement there.
- Organize around big problems, and don’t keep all the social tool usage under the radar.

Cautionary tales:

- Middle management can be harder to convince than senior management. (They are rewarded for “making the trains run on time,” not for encouraging people to spend time learning new tools.)
- It’s faulty to assume that what’s true on the web will work the same way in the enterprise
- Fight against lockdown. Turn down requests by users to have “private” spaces accessible by only a few people (yes, this one from the CIA!)
- Not all organizations are ready for transparency.
- Don’t assume that because everyone can have a voice that decisions will be made by the majority (the crowd). Leaders must learn to use the opinions of the crowd to inform and shape decisions, not to make them.

Pete Fields’ definition of “Enterprise 2.0:"

Connecting people for the purpose of deriving business value

It is worth browsing through the podcasts and discussion forums to help you learn more about innovative approaches for Enterprise 2.0 -- more often now called Enterprise 3.0 and Web 3.0.

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