Tag Archives: social

Interesting stuff from July 12 to August 7

The periodic roundup:

  • Do Things that Don’t Scale – Technologist and venture capitalist Paul Graham with advice for start-ups (it IS his game, after all) … it’s the stuff that can’t be automated that makes a difference, so do that.
  • How Drucker Thought About Complexity – You could be forgiven for thinking that since Peter Drucker worked in a simpler time, his thinking might not apply in our more complex environments these days. You’d be wrong … check out what John Hagel III has to say (read it quickly – it’s a limited access HBR article)
  • Overcoming the Barriers to Enterprise Collaboration – All the time I’ve been involved with technology, people and organisations have been pre-occupied with technology as a “silver bullet”, the magical answer to their problem(s) – enterprise social/social business has been no different. This is a reasonably balanced view of enterprise social media, and where/how it might help with your collaboration efforts
  • Robert McNamara and the Dangers of Big Data at Ford and in the Vietnam War – “McNamara felt he could comprehend what was happening on the ground only by staring at a spreadsheet—at all those orderly rows and columns, calculations and charts, whose mastery seemed to bring him one standard deviation closer to God.” Big data can be a powerful tool, but sometimes what you really need is eyeballs on the ground, where people do real things … either that, or we all just become part of the body count


Interesting stuff from June 25th through July 31st

The periodic round up:

  • The future of outsourcing – A short and succinct piece on both the advantages and the dangers of outsourcing, and the implications of it for your business. And the importance of drawing the line in the right place:
    “Only a fool would outsource their heart or lungs by choice.”
  • Turn Big Data aspirations into business value – Big data is one thing; finding the business value in it is a bit harder – MIT’s Sloan Management Review suggests that
    “…a large percentage of stored data serves no useful purpose because management has not specified how it will be used: who will make what decisions or provide what services with what data.”
    Interestingly, the research suggests starting at the operational level rather than attempting analytics.
  • - The Obvious? – State Of The Net 2012 – Euan’s talk at State of the Net 2012 – a primer on not only what internal use of social media organisations can adopt, but a consideration of the implications of doing so for individuals.
  • Atlassian’s big experiment with performance reviews – My opinion of individual performance reviews is fairly well-known, and anecdotally well-supported. What has been missing, though, is a viable alternative to the process that most HR software supports. Atlassian found this too, but being software developers weren’t prepared to let that lie. They are not only hacking together a working alternative process, but are sharing it for our interest and education …
  • At Large in the Post-Normal Beyond Futurism – If you struggle with what we consider “normal” at the moment, you may have bigger problems with “post-normal”, and the ubiquity of VUCA (volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity). Boyd considers what we might need to make sense of the world, and sees “speculative design” which considers “implications” as more important than “applications” of design




Interesting stuff from February 27th through March 10th

The periodic round up:

  • Making collaborative work work – Is “social business” necessary for collaboration? No – ALL business is collaborative. But three simple “social” principles can make collaboration in your business BETTER. Simple in principle, that is … execution is the trick. You’ll see what I mean when you read the post!
  • Why Connect.me? – My piece on connect.me, a site which tackles the thorny issue of trust on the internet. If you know someone, or something about them, you can vouch for them on that topic. Over time, and multiple vouches, a reputation can be made evident, and trust can be built. My point is that trust is one of three things that needs to be in place before we see the missing 90% of the internet’s potential. The other two? Read on …
  • But are they working hard? – A look at the problems managers get themselves into when they concentrate on inputs (hours worked, “busyness”) rather than outputs (actual results); and when they try and attribute team results to individuals … most performance reviews completely ignore that individual achievements in a business context are extremely rare – most, if not all, results are a collective effort.
  • Edging toward the fully licensed world – So who owns what on the Internet? Doc Searls looks at why we need to think now about what sort of “ownership” we want for the Internet, before corporations turn it into a shopping strip, and we lose the freedoms that make the Internet valuable. SOPA, PIPA and ACTA are just the tip of the iceberg  
  • Right versus pragmatic – Note to big media: don’t fight demand; address it. A pragmatic approach to piracy illustrated by men’s bathroom habits …



Interesting stuff from February 14th through February 16th

The periodic round up:

  • Adapt or Die? – My post on social media adoption and commitment … (I warned you)
  • Meetings: Where Work Goes to Die – We all hate them, but that's probably because we're doing them wrong. Here's some good ideas about effective meetings. The one I liked most? Make ALL attendees optional, and if nobody shows up, maybe they're right.
  • Does Airport Security Really Make Us Safer? – The questioning of billions of dollars on useless security theatre in out airports is going mainstream … the problem is overblown, the "solution" is expensive, and ineffective to boot.
    What works? Locking the cockpit door, matching luggage to passengers, passengers who will fight back. Best place to invest? Good old-fashioned intelligence and police work …
  • Why Oracle May Really Be Doomed This Time – It's become popular to start writing off the software dinosaurs – this is another recent crack at it, suggesting that Oracle will be done away with by a new generation of users and cloud/SaaS.
    It's a story that's been told before, but the conviction is increasing …
  • The End Of ERP – So what happens to monolithic ERP software in the age of service-based offerings? According to this guy (who has a vested interest, it should be said), they die …

Adapt or Die?

Once we outlined all that they needed to do in order to really use social media effectively, they balked. In the end, they did not want to evolve; they only wanted to be able to say they had

via In this Adapt or Die Digital World, Where Are You Headed? | Social Media Club.

Let’s face it, some companies may never be ready to use social media meaningfully. Whether that means they die, as this post suggests, is for history to tell us … I suspect that they will find some issues attracting and retaining both customers and employees. The thrust of the above quote is a little more subtle than the title implies, though: it’s not whether you take up social media or not, it’s the conviction with which you do it that will impact most on your success (or otherwise). Anything you do for appearance’s sake is unlikely to turn out well. 

So – adapt/adopt or not as you see fit. But if you’re going to do it, you need to be committed to the effort. That’s been true forever, not just about social media.

Interesting stuff from July 25th through July 30th

The weekly round up:

  • Inventing the Future is Everybody’s Job – Increasingly, strategy and planning are moving out of the executive suite into a broader milieu for shaping directions. Why? “the world is just too complex, change comes too fast, and the challenges we face are too immense (and interconnected), for an insular clique of executives to chart the course of an organization from a blank sheet of paper and sheer brilliance” … is that the case in your business? What will you do about it?
  • Cooperation vs Collaboration – An interesting viewpoint on the difference between collaboration (typified as an outcome of “collectives” – groups with a single purpose) and cooperation (an outcome of “connectives” – a less-formal grouping of people with individual but related purposes), and the potential interplay between the two.
  • Why Exception Handling Should be the Rule – Handling repeatable processes is now table stakes – if you’re a sizeable company and  can’t handle the bulk of your business value transactions “automatically” with a standard (probably automated) process, you won’t stay in business for long.
    Where the differentiation comes is in handling exceptions to the “standard” process. These shouldn’t be seen as problems – they are often an opportunity to really put yourself ahead of competitors in the eyes of the customer … so it’s worth thinking about how to accommodate exceptions better.
  • Why corporate blogging is like selling uncut cocaine – Something of a sensationalist title perhaps, but it makes the point that getting your message out via third-parties (while still useful in some distribution channels) is diluting your company’s story … and increasingly consumers want to hear it “from the horse’s mouth”.

Interesting stuff from June 6th through June 16th

The weekly round up:


  • TEDx Talk on the Open Enterprise – “We live in democracies, but work in dictatorships” … a simple statement of the issue of HOW we work (particularly in Western economies) – the structures and practices of business are thousands of years old, and aren’t necessarily a good fit anymore. This contributes to an estimated 75% of workers (number is from the US, I believe) being disaffected and disengaged from their efforts. Do we REALLY think that 3/4 of the workforce under-performing against their own will is the best way of organising our companies?

  • Rory Sutherland makes a change – Every now and then, it’s good to be able to give bouquets to a bank, and not brickbats. Kudos to Westpac (in New Zealand – how about Aus!?) for doing something a little out of the ordinary – making it easy for customers to impulse SAVE, rather than impulse BUY … just hit the big red button.

  • Influence Measurement Optimization – There’s a lot of noise around social networks about “reach” and “influence”, as players like Klout and Peerindex attempt to translate numbers of followers/friends and the depth and breadth of conversation (and some other black magic) to estimate how much social currency you might be able to wield. Of course (as Google continually struggles with) any system of algorithmic ranking will get gamed, and (more subtly) just observing something changes what is observed …

  • Breakup of the euro? Is Iceland’s rejection of financial bullying a model for Greece and Ireland? – It’s clear that national sovereignty in the Eurozone is subservient to the interests of bankers – the EMU insists that the PIIGs should repay failed loans to speculators by mortgaging their economies for two generations. Iceland still has a sovereign currency, and so far has thumbed its nose to protecting private profits … do Ireland and Greece have the cojones to leave the Euro and re-establish currency sovereignty? The pain will be sharp, but will last two years (cf Argentina) rather than two generations.

  • Take your SharePoint implementation to the next level – In which it is demonstrated that it IS possible to turn a Sharepoint implementation into a social business tool … but it’s still lipstick on a pig. There’s a whole lot of good reasons for not using Sharepoint as your social tool of choice – and this is a pro-Sharepoint post! Biggest issue – Sharepoint is document-centric, not people-centric; it is structurally non-social. If you’re interested in Enterprise 2.0/Social Business, there’s a lot of stuff that works better – but hey! – it COULD work.