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Posts Tagged ‘2.0’

It reminds me the pleasure when I read this famous book about “art of war”, according to Chinese philosophy, from Sun Tzu. This masterpiece became as famous as strategic gentles like Porter, Christensen, Chan/Mauborgne and so long, in the art of NOT making war in any case. I as thinking about some quotes and some parts remind me, as I’m surfing along, in the digital cage.

Yes like Tzu said, we have to spend some time to discover and share anything, on social networks, while there is any trust, in the fact that we often know our “friends”, only in virtual life. I know now, virtual life online is supplying more and more details about “friends” (sometimes too much I guess…), and I can think, there is still privacy.

I selected some quotes, that, in my opinion, show some unrevealed faces of social web.

  • “no war can be won in a static behavior”: whatever the position and your investment in the furious waves for web, with agreement or consciousless, you have to express yourself, give an idea of your digital welfare. Yin or Yang, but something. Move, but not too fast or too slow…
  • “war is a skill: no engage without all the reflexion that it needs”: guess everybody wants to make some noise, lot of noise, and make lots of friends on web (and/or life). But what for? give an idea of which goal you score, what aim you follow will make you more accurate and relevant in your expressions and sharing.
  • “…army will be close and team builded, happy for one goal…”: social networks and communities, can give opinion and pressure to lots of modern topics, peacefully of course…aimed in the same direction.
  • “bulk forget about death”: let’s see beyond first sight, to get the essence…death could mean “meaningless, excluded, apart” ; while networking and blogging, nobody cares about being apart, when rules and rites are clearly respected. Nobody wants to exclude no one.
  • “the general must create situations that lead to achievement”: when one launch a discussion or debate, that leads to result and building a collective enhancement.
  • “the masters in art of war, will lead without fight…and win”: know how lead a debate, without any opposition, leveraging each collaboration and answering to words sharing, that means wise behavior.
  • “know enemy and know you too”: guides you to a strong vision in your strengths and weaknesses, works for debate, identify your abilities and know how to withdraw.
  • “what depends on me, I can do it”: answer, send congratulations, thank people…all kind of shapes of participating and animation of debates and communities.
  • “respect laws (lords of war do)”: there are some behavior laws and rules to know. Listen, Stare and Engage. Not too fast…
  • “in art of war, there is no fixed rules. They can change, adapting to context…”: be flexible, but be kind and drive the discussion. No obvious idea, no prejudgment, feel free to be brought wherever you’ve maybe never been. It’s a principle of “bring and pick”, the essence of conversation.
  • “so, we just need few force to make lots of result ; like a rolling stone in a steep slope”: social media is viral, and there so much leverage in using it carefully.

I was really happy to read and consult this book of good sense and harmony quest, by the old gestures of wisdom. Guess, if you’re patient enough, there’s a lot of wisdom to care and get in socializing web and media. That’s why we need each other to complete our facing challenges and interrogations. Gear up collaboration, collaborative rooms and friendness, and let’s use the web as it is: a big disruptive tool reducing the fence, recovering harmony in relations.

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Digital brings the best, digital brings the worst. Looking at storms that came on music and movies, in peer-to-peer downloading, while others tried to impose DRM, no one did the real comparison between positive effects or negative ones, on macro economics keys. Some say it could have save jobs, or created ones. Others complain about unability to move and accept such shift for employees. What we can say, for sure, is stay on facts and figures, about rise of digital behaviours, in our daily lives.

  • innovation is “adding something”, in use, behaviours that is waited, wished (or not), or that change the way we do, or think about things
  • digital brought us things we accepted (useful), others we didn’t (not relavant or too early): and that’s life, innovation is a cycle and it’s not an automatic process, it’s a part of mystery and seduction
  • digital is often (and unfortunately) first lived like a threat than an opportunity: because lots of industries built their business model and structured it on brick-and-mortar models, and the speed how they move is too slow (when if/they decide to…)
  • digital is a change of DNA for things and services, before it could be possible on humans (!);

Traditional moves and behaviours

Meanwhile digital could transform everything, old skills and industries are trying to understand what is going to change in their value chain, how they are going to manage it, and if they have interest or no, to move anything toward digital world. We all know it’s easier not to do anything vs doing something we can’t understand/afford: risk doesn’t pay first but often in a long shift. Some shareholders can’t (don’t) want such a time. But for such actors, it can be really dangerous: letting door open to new comers, that have fresh and bright ideas and can burst the value to their interests. Innovating, not too early, but not too late. Music, in its former shape, that at the time invested in distribution a lot, has been completely disorganized by the digital fact. Video and movies, trying to bring some sense in the go-between with “DRM” and “piracy”, live a real revolution of mobility, in the “anytime, anywhere, any device” triple A social move. Books finally, after being the first thing that has been shifted to digital (remember pdf forms, long time ago…), is the last stuff to come: but longer than it seems, because of the market. Those who are in the market, I mean customers, do they really need now digital books? what for? for all books formats? on which devices? answers to come, while Amazon Kindle’s DRM just been cracked

Then digital entered the dance

We are digital. We live digital. DNA is digital. So what?
While all these things happen, did we identify what are the changes in uses we can trust, replicate and appreciate, those we can say they are innovation. Some of them for sure, but none of all…You, tomorrow, forget about all your digital devices and try to imagine your life without. Is it better or worse? Which value, attention pay you to such innovation, how do you evaluate it, what is your level of frustration? In a way, I can say I’m a geek, but not for tech, but because I’m curious, discovering new things, trying always the big picture. Enjoying innovation and design. I just ordered a new device called “chumby“. Really interested in this new kind of “all-in-one” device, portable, mobile, always wired stuff. Will it serve me, do I need it. Of course or probably, no…But it opens my mind to new ways of thinking, giving chance to brain to solve and consider differently problems and solutions. IDEO company manages this really brightly. They know how to forget what they know and start again. Discovering, being pushed and engaged with technologies. Does it need to have sense in a short term result? No. Because it’s a mindset quest. Something that disturbs our comfortable life. Something unavoidable, valuable. The ability and duty to search for more, bursting borders and conformism. And that is sufficient, for me, to move mountains and stay motivated…

What did the web and UGC?

Now we can communicate (!). More and more, between us. And that changed all. Digital period means digital behaviors and shifts from a single way communication to multi actors communities. I’ve already described how social web changed us here among several opinions in the blogosphere. Web drove modern retail to innovate, or even to think about it: some achieved, some still search. For customer’s choice, happiness and service. And UGC opened discussion and creation for everyone, by everyone. Entering in, blowing frontiers out of the limits, making anyone a anonymous speaker, creator, for web window. Do we leverage now the infinite power of digital? Look at such interactive facts that are now so natural, that we learnt to live with?

Potential escape and actors: the next value chains?

Companies, Customers and Communities: the three “C” model, where every actor has a clever role to play. Customers may take advantage of digital opportunities, by the way they probably do it yet. Because in using communities and social web, they have a large advantage in sharing and grabbing information: quick and reliable, they know how to handle. Because they are part of communities, they play a role in moderation for others new customers.

Companies must learn to play with them, not with an eye on the pocket wallet, but with a big ear, to listen what is all about and what cares for a customer: to be understood. There’s probably a concrete frustration, with the fact that disruptive innovation (from Innovator’s Dilemma by C. Christensen) could not exist: we need firms that take risk to deliver and to jump into unknown pleasures. Disruptive means invisible profits, unknown markets and needs, and uncertainty about ROI. It needs a lot of motivation to shift, for a big company, from comfortable situation to darkness. In a way, that’s nowadays our goal to convince companies to jump into 2.0 behaviors. But one thing I’m sure about, is that the revolution must be lead with all of three actors: companies, customers and communities. They are all aware about what’s going on, and can all find their tomorrow needs. Even if it’s only whispered, digital era comes with next generation Y and Z, and boost companies process, behaviors and customers needs facing their choices: going or not, refuse or go ahead, with something sometimes strange, sometimes crazy, but not boring. Shifts have to come in the next value chains for companies, and time is running out, need to change and transform their business, while they are sometimes blind with disruptive effects. Or do we want to live in a dork world, fearing of progress to come, without trying to capture the large opportunities it brings? Never mind about judge anyone, but enlightning what is already there…

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Considering that famous book by G. Moore, that en-lighted the real chasm threat in launching new products or services, and achieve them to the next step for huge mass markets, I’m wondering, how could 2.0 could help, improve, support the chasm tomorrow and changes driven by interactivity. According to need of a launch session for new products and services, while these products or services can be sometimes not really ready to be launched, boosted by urgent, economics, and competitive goals (!), we saw it can exist a chasm that even good ideas don’t cross…Targeting a mass market requires talent, good product, and innovation advance to make the difference. But if innovation is a lifestyle for geeks and early adopters, shifting the trial to a mass success needs. Fortunately, geeks and EA are awesome levers to get empowerment for news things to be hugely used. And where can one find geeks and EA, most of the time? Yes, on social web.

Chasm20

We all have the opportunity to see how social sharing and participation can have changed relation mindsets, providing warming contacts, experts advising, communities rising and breakthrough boundaries and time. See how a novel, buzz or information can be built or denied in few seconds, or participate now to empower politics polls and decisions (mentioned that with last Obama’s victory with bulk social web virality). Necessary, but not the only thing to be done. New products/services have to be launched in an accurate, scheduled and secret plan. Too quick sometimes, making the idea real, but keeping bugs for the end users…Look at how cars models, can be back at fixing stations, few moments after their beginning of life…Microsoft products? Found lots of reasons to launch them, and thousands of users not really happy with new releases. I think business cycles now gear up. Innovation cycle, in some sectors can be so short, we mix several phases in one, already thinking to the next step. That’s probably why now, time is a strategic value, and all that can keep us from wasting it, is key. 2.0 and social web can help a lot to “cross” and have quick feedbacks on launch, polls, ideas, improvements, tests and corrections. And usually, addicted people to social web are particularly clever about new things and like to give you, for free, new ways of thinking. Meaning that, if you built a community, to worry about your launches, they will know how to handle it, and will cope with competitors that won’t miss to be cruel. But if you don’t, your products will go on an invisible of ocean, with potential users, who wait like sharks for new food, question is how they will “digest” the straight venue and what they are going to say about success or lead to die?

Chasm might be deep, chasm might be short, but chasm is a strong reality. Imagine you’re subjected to a judgement step, and more you prepare before, more product or service has a chance to succeed. If you want to give chances to survive, well organize first launch as if you were driven in front of the bulk scene: products/services prepared to be understood by many of the target, will get more chances to mass market, than fashion ones, excluding if you’re dealing on a niche market. We saw that maybe target of 2.0 is a new valuable field to get audience, advises and early tests for new services or products. But how can 2.0 helps this to increase the chances to cross the bridge (build one)? On the chasm.

I think it’s in listening and working with early users that you can do it, and social boards, like betas, experts panels and communities gear up the way information turns. The more you listen, the quicker you work with it, the greater chances you’ll have to correct, evaluate misfits, features, quality problems for bulk success. And social web for sure makes you saving time for that, if you can spend some time to build a network and give it news regularly. Each part of the market has its own behaviors: innovators are pure tech lovers, early adopters next, may feel there’s a real use for the innovation in field, and early majority, that’s the main problem, has to be guided by other early majority members, which wait for a main change in their life, because of the innovation. And if this brand new thing doesn’t ensure them, with entourage for done a good tip and be sure they will have all kinds of support, customer care and so long, there’s no chance for tech to be adopted, by mass early majority. And then may enter web 2.0 power: linking people, advises and take the role of customer care…While we saw that innovators/geeks prowl on social networks, no need to be clever to think that they will give all their advises and share their experience to ensure and make a better sale than you…they know the product, they know bugs (!), they can guide you to adopt it by several “old good rules”…And while trust is an essential rule for communities leaders, looking at the most influencers can be really relevant, giving them samples to test and keeping eyes on back timeline. That’s how it goes, that’s now how advertising stands place, while buzz is exploding. Ignoring power of social leaders is like ignoring power of www community As I already said, “customers are the best sellers for a brand”, and to go further, “social leaders are strong guides to burst your brand and your products”, crossing the chasm, convincing early (sleeping?) majority to come and buy.

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At this point of my career, I’ve used so many times help of HR resources, to find gold members for my several teams, pay attention to them, pay them (!), training, coaching…and fire them!
At-a-glance, the daily lifetime of nowadays corps, with bunch of tasks, questions, answers, chilled by M&A and crisis waves…I must admit that, HR teams, whose we know for often hard jobs for hard times, are quite all the time, considered as suppliers more than strategic units, to serve corps strategies, find bests resources and keep them by their side. And I don’t really know, in fact, what came first:
– bored with HR function which don’t give me nothing relevant in my career?
– HR function bored itself by no consideration at all, from board and shareholders, forgetting strategic and relevant skills it has?

One thing I know for sure: times have changed. And for HR best practices and careers too. When was the last time your corp said to you “oh you’re such a talent, we make anything possible to keep you with us, at any price”. Maybe in the last movie you saw at theatre? your dreams?

Considering that, nothing will ever surprise me when, you see billions of users for social networks, searching…searching what?
To be considered, as a human link, skilled, motivated and find a corp that wants such profiles.
New generations just want to express themselves with new technologies, but bring new value, corps have to care. Working with several windows, listening music, chatting on IM, twitter and networking on Facebook or myspace., everything at a time. That is, in working hours of course, while working…No matter, times have just changed and corps have to adapt their perception and behaviors, if they want to get the best from their best resources. I’ve already posted something on it, describing the necessary evolution for corps, facing 2.0 behaviors and fans. But in the same time, they show their rights and duties, bringing new kind of conversation, confrontations and relations with their management. There’s a time for new ways of communication: social apps. Considering time is faster and realtime a daily tool, they gear up the way we work, speeding HR by the way…They know how to handle with their career, in increasing their times online. Once I was cruising among social apps, some of them can really be useful to find the perfect job and for targeting the best talent or expert.
I mused about several apps, I discovered along my web travels, encounters and social friends recommendations. It gave me the idea of a whole matrix, trying to mix corps skills and HR needs with employees graal quest for their carrer.

hr20

In this matrix one can find employees opportunities to raise their career (find a job, change, give some voice, post and appear like an expert, raise a network, write and give advises, shine your brand reputation, last but not least, get a digital trip for your profile): settled in X axis…Then for corps, the ability to detect, track, find rare and targeted talents, skilled resources and experts they need to recruit and keep as human assets: on Y axis…

Obviously I wasn’t able to figure out all apps that exist in the web circles, but main and one we talk about now. Maybe I forgot some (sorry for VC and founders, I may add them later!) but we can underline some remarks about the matrix layout:
– size of network matters obviously, but more targeted and participation counts more than size itself
– target your audience first, starting from your personal goals (advise to employees or corps, any of them has some goals isn’t it?) before collect friends from everywhere; “friends” or “contacts” are like you: human not machines, they don’t like noise or spams…
– jobseekers or headhunters give you lots of informations, but no really surprises: classical methods, classical ads, classical profiles. Mainstream…By the way, competitors may learn a lot each form others (eg for HR strategy), and on your business goals thoughout your HR ambitions; however, they are on the 2.0 market by direct approach of employees, simply by the fact employees life is clearly and free published on the web…Considering that:

  • nothing is easier to search and find good ones…for headhunters
  • how corps can keep their secrecy about talents and skilled people anymore?

– friendly apps (Facebook, myspace…) can raise your imagination, creativity and original profiles; yes they are useful for original and creative ones, but drive sometimes too crap behaviors. Be careful, for pleasure use but not really for professional networking, I think (tip: doesn’t mean that we can’t find several interesting informations, of course…)
– Blogs, communities for experts, consulting databases online are in the middle of the matrix…perfect way to  mix corps and employees to get in touch: communities like SMT, Customer Collective, sustainable development and lots of others, are really rich of experiences, and generally hit by trust, interest and improvement in other’s knowledge. Clever leverage for professional meets and know-how methods, for the two players of the game
– internal apps at upper-left corner, means corps are equiped with such systems, but serve only their internal needs: wages, contracts, training programs, competences contingency…layoffs; how will it value my career?
– corps that ignore such apps, are in dangerous situation:

  • “nothing is more dangerous than be blind about market, customers or competitors strategy”: worth also with ability to wake up each morning with all HR assets and talents, escaped for competitors!
  • take time to mesure which one for which use: but take time for sure, stopping considering such tools only for gen Y and playing moments…gen Y (and X) change the future of relations (managers / employees)
  • allow and encourage practice and training for professional use; several corps today started blogs sessions with official spokemen to keep relation and timeline with PR, customers and partners; corps that think it’s a wasting time are wrong…and risk others to take the speach for us, with sometimes tough effects…

Times are changing. There’s no doubt about the fact that corps must change too, because employees (particularly younger ones) already did…And if you’re not able in your HR function to understand their moves and these new behaviors, you’ll be “out of the market” for them, leading you to fights, misunderstandings, and desertion. Human resources like stocks? No. But like assets, yes, and the ability to move with them empowers your role and the trust they’ll have, to drive their career (tip: zapping behavior is normal today, there’s no “career plans” anymore, in long term, by crisis and unknown situations). Even if you’re dealing with this, let’s consider it IN the corp, vs moves to competitors. Could you accept giving assets for nothing to competitors? No. Why would it be different with executives…?

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A novel to enlarge points of view of 2.0 wave in companies, while some of them are frightened by 2.0 applications and uses in their walls. An Inside report, full of concrete and real acts, hopeful I swear…

Companies are still shy about social platforms usings in the field of their core business, and with their employees. But nobody can’t now ignore the generation Y, because of its potential and in the way they’re now building the next future stories of companies behaviors, renewal of old process, reshaping our habits. But some of them, even in the most important corps, do. They seem to be hypnotized, sometimes by surprise, but by the fear and threat they seem to feel too. Fear? Yes, for sure. The battle for information is since several years, settled down in all commitments, and often produce rude wars. Audience can make the fire bigger, and that’s why, there’s an inside, invisible and covering curse, that is named “ability to express yourself without any control”, ability eased by 2.0 tools and practices. Mistrust now makes the deal, and enemies of social web are spreading new rules to slow use of it, setting control panels for users, but instead of controlling users, trying to control contents. An endless quest, far from reach, and difficult to achieve. Companies often make mistakes, are wrong about the target: controlling why not, if control makes higher quality of contents, participation and moderation; but if the aim is controlling contents, all of it, from reading to forbid using, it’s not why I call “a progress, exploiting all potential”. They might have lots of give up in jobs, in the genY rows…Because, they’re born in, with it, by it. They don’t know how to manage without such behaviors and work inhabits.

We can say social web facilitate spreading ego behaviors and self promotion, but why would it be bad, according the fact that you work for a company, which could exploit, serve its interests, by using your personal shining success, mixing it with its own brand…Be sure some do it. Why gen Y couldn’t use social web (Facebook, LinkedIn…) as they use their mobile – personal stuff btw -, at the office?

But there’re really some obvious advantages, pros for social apps. According to McKinsey ‘s last survey “building the web 2.0” and others, we can underline 4 among them, probably more to follow…

1) Inside communication, by the fact that is facilitated, speeded, with IM, micro-blogging and so long

2) Companies events, organisation, subscriptions management and the ability to react live, comment and make the events more alive and real time

3) Training and coaching, ability to follow more efficiency employees and executives, in their career, wish and next steps of progression; some bad advisors may see another “big brother” in there, maybe, maybe not…a risk to remind

4) Innovation and change management, ability to move quickly; immobile corps are dead and social apps can make you go faster and a step ahead, before competitors

So, we talked about controlling yes, but controlling users, some identified users with potential, treating them as stars, leveraging their work, facilitating communication, can get you on the highest step of the wall. And become the star of Gen Y, a company where youngest like to work in, a innovating brand, forecasting the future, leading markets.

I know it’s really difficult not to control brand, valuation and goodwill of a company, but I’m afraid it’s quite now really impossible in the facts: that’s why, set your efforts on moderators, opinion leaders and not on what they write/say. Add them on levels of strategy, they’re the most adequate way to buzz and take the information to the highest leverages levels to consumers and stocks markets. Communication is a hard job  but let’s jump from public relation to public relationship, warmer and more friendly. And be sure the most thing to avoid: block, forbid using of it will drive to internal revolution, bad notoriety and something like rejection of brand…

You can visit this new expert’s site for talent managementand if you like to gear up, read this funny guide…funny, but real. Don’t forget.

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