Not all of us may want to ride a satellite. But we certainly would not survive for very long in the Stoneage. A year ago, at a conference with the Group CIOs of Europe’s biggest companies, a CIO had the courage to stand up and tell us how his organization made the journey to complete business transformation. How they did it, is not as remarkable as the speed at which it happened: “6 months ago we were in the Stoneage – now we are trying to figure out how to make our satellites move faster”.
The propellant was social. By breaking down the internal boundaries on the new platform, they made the leap from transactions to engagement. Not only internally, but even more so when interacting with customers and business partners. Now you might think the company in question was one of those agile, high techs who are used to all things digital and the Internet of things. It wasn’t – it was a hard core manufacturing company with traditional products and traditional markets. And French.
You raise your arm in the audience and ask the obvious question: But how?
R. “Ray” Wang from the Harvard Business Review has one really good explanation: people-centric values, delivery and communication style, and timing. http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2012/05/how_to_engage_your_customers_a.html)
And salesforce.com Chief Scientist JP Rangaswami explains it with warmth and humour in this recording from Cloudforce Nordics in Stockholm on October 23, 2012:
Social is about people. Business is about people. Transformation is about people.
By building your journey on what matters to people, you will engage both employees and customers. Running your business will no longer be a series of data transactions; with the help of the many available social tools it will be run by data driven conversations .