I’m catching up on my feeds and I just had a chance to read Dion Hinchecliffe’s Enterprise 2.0 as a corporate culture catalyst and I was reminded of something I emailed to a colleague a few weeks ago regarding the assimilation of Web 2.0 tools and platforms into organizations” What is an organization if not the sum of its parts; and at what point in history can we say that Organizations are more a sum of their parts than right now?”
It was Dion’s uncomplicated evaluation that Web 2.0 applications are “…often designed explicitly for the consumer audience and are missing vital “enterprise context” such as integration with security platforms, enterprise search engines, Intranet resources such as portal engines, and so on.” that seemed to match my thinking right now on the same subject stride for stride
The last two months for me and colleagues have been an evolving discussion of Web 2.0, Enterprise 2.0, Macro-Communities, Macronomics, The Era of Collaboration, Wikinomics, open-source information, peer-to-peer platforms, Prosumers, Social Media, The Conversation Economy, The New Economy, The New Econo-Me, The New Ecomo-We, The You Economy and the list is grows every time someone comes up with another amusing name. What we’re talking about is the power, the influence, the engagement, the value and the importance of the individual within the group whether that group is organizational or global.
With the speed of change today it’s unreasonable to think that a single leader or even a core of leaders within an organization could react, process this change, adapt and decision-make while preparing for the unknowable, the next change, which very likely is occurring while they are handling the first change.
The voices and the opinions of individuals at every level of an organization need to be valued equally. Combine that with the speed of change, social media and the need to recognize opportunities and not only is leadership needed at every level of an organization, but it already exists.
Enterprise 2.0 apps that address business needs will be critical to flatten the hierarchies, create leaders at every level within organizations and tap individual potential because:
1. You don’t have to be there to be there anymore
2. The present no longer happens in the present
3. Once we enter the conversation we can only control our portion of it
Enterprise and industry have left the information age and entered the age of conversation, collaboration, interaction, immersion and inclusion. Truly the answer to the question, “What difference can one person make?” This is the Butterfly Effect for social media and this fluttering can cause ripples half-way around the world or monsoons within an organization. I say this because organizations who try to survive with the trickle-down, linear, hierarchical approach to business in the 21st century will not survive.
The organizations that can effectively add enterprise context to this and make it work successfully for them will be able to develop a sustainable competitive advantage.