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Why become a ‘Social Business’? (Part II)

Last week, I left you with the first 5 points to how social creates value in the workplace. Continuing that blog, here are the top 5.


Increased Collaboration Potential: Collaboration is more than creating and sharing. It is difficult for organizations that reward individual behaviors and accomplishments to truly collaborate. In order to effectively leverage the collaboration potential that social technologies provide, we must find ways to encourage teams to work together and contribute collectively. Social technologies enable this by giving everyone a voice and breaking down silos. With social, we can more easily collaborate across departments, time zones, and even organizations by allowing our trusted partners, customers, and suppliers into our social network. Information flows become less hierarchal as direct connections and relationships across organizational boundaries are formed.


Increased Employee Productivity: Productivity can be defined as the ability to generate, create, enhance or bring forth good and services. Social technologies allow us to be more productive and achieve performance excellence though a variety of means. Search is first. Search results driven by social concepts such as tagging and ratings become extremely relevant. Search finally is able to provide results we can use to be productive by not just providing relevant information, but also by introducing us to relevant people. Since people are at the heart of a social system, finding people based on profiles rich with skills, expertise, interests, and capabilities enables a world where the people that can help us are just a click away. Search + Social thus becomes the ultimate knowledge management system: one that everyone uses everyday to produce excellence.


Increased Responsiveness to the Marketplace: Customers notice. Customers notice a company’s increased capacity to provide service. Social technologies enable us to quickly find information, find people, answer questions and solve problems. Whether we need good information to efficiently respond to an RFP with high-quality content, or we need to find the one person in the organization that has experience with a particular product, social provides the answer. A great example of this is in the consumer space via online medical support communities. Countless lives have been improved by giving cancer patients access to experts, high quality information, and communities to provide the support and encouragement necessary to tackle life-threatening personal issues. This same model, when applied to business, can be transformational.


Increased Market Share: Here we let the experts talk: According to the McKinsey Institute, “fully networked enterprises are not only more likely to be market leaders or to be gaining market share, but also use management practices that lead to margins higher than those of companies using the Web in more limited ways.” McKinsey research has shown that leveraging web 2.0 concepts such as social, both internally and externally, have proven to provide enviable differentiators for any organization.


Increased Revenue and Decreased Costs: Each of the points above and in Part 1 point to real value stemming from adoption of social technologies and processes.
Value is everywhere! So, in summary, we obtain value in:

  • The ability to support more customers with current resources
  • Improved customer service leading to customer retention and growth
  • Decreased support call volume
  • Productive employees delivering high quality the first time
  • Daily incremental improvement in business processes
  • Connecting once separated resources and applying their collective experience to solving problems
  • Reduced travel costs
  • Discovering new ideas and bringing them to market quickly
  • Getting more done with the people you have
  • Employees who are intrinsically motivated to improve company performance
  • Attracting and retaining top talent
  • Spending more time producing, less time in email

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