Reaching the vision of a truly social business is complex, there’s no denying that fact. What often gets lost in our discussions of those complexities however is that where you start is less important than where you’re going. After a few months of working with customers it’s clear that we’ve done a poor job as an industry (including SideraWorks) of letting companies know that you don’t have to try and tackle everything all at once. We’ve instilled a fear in them that this stuff is just too overwhelming. We’re in the process of changing our materials to correct that misconception, but in the meantime let’s try and provide some clarity around how you can start down this road simply and easily.
Where Are You Going?
Building a social business basically falls into two major categories of activities.
- Dealing with the implications on your business of engaging in external social media
- Taking advantage of the opportunities that applying social concepts within your organization represents
That’s it, nothing more nothing less. It’s perfectly fine if you only want to do external engagement for a while. What does matter however is that you deal with those implications. Whether that’s through applying something like the SideraWorks Center of Gravity™ framework or another model of your own design you need centralized understanding and agreement.
Where Do You Start?
The initial items at that stage are things like policies, governance, crisis and escalation processes, etc. These are the items that can be decided upon and put into effect without much of an investment in human capital. Later on you can tackle the items requiring slightly more recurring investments like standardizing and centralizing social technologies, cross-communication models, and so on.
These items aren’t rocket science and can be accelerated if desired by utilizing an outside consultancy that has developed all these things before and can facilitate the decision making process within your groups. But you are capable of doing these things yourself as well (promise), it’ll just take longer and may not be as complete in the beginning. In either case there’s no excuse for not moving forward today.
Cost Savings & Risk Mitigation
The key here is to develop a clear vision of where you’re going and to do so from holistic perspective not just a single department or business unit. By having that clarity you can then align the various social activities you’re undertaking with the eventual goal so that when you arrive there you’ve done so in an efficient manner. The cost savings and risk mitigation you’ll achieve by doing so is massive and the investment of developing that vision is minimal.
Do you know what that long term vision of social looks like in your organization? You should. Need some help with that? Feel free to contact me.
Matt Ridings – @techguerilla
Photo Credit: By Steve-h