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19 October 2008

More thoughts on Enterprise 2.0

Was trying to clarify my ideas about Enterprise 2.0 recently and realised the most important thing is that it enables the agile enterprise. Social software or web 2.0 technology allows connection of core business systems and processes with the people that need to access them.

That is, it enables an organisation to be more flexible and respond quickly to changes in market conditions, new technology, regulatory and consumer demands.

It also enables the agile enterprise to reach out beyond its organisational boundaries and to initiate conversations with stakeholders that were once almost impossible. It provides the ability to create an environment where dialogue is possible – dialogue between managers and staff, between company staff and consumers, and between company staff and suppliers.

One of the biggest challenges facing organisations is that of silos - of information, connections and power. It has been very difficult to effectively direct organisational resources in a focused way.

One approach to address this dilemma has been stronger attempts at top down control, better reporting systems like balanced scorecards and data marts. Using the maxim if you can’t measure it you can’t manage it businesses have measured and reported in an attempt to better harness organisational resources. But in fact, we still find it difficult to get people to work across the internal boundaries of the organisation to help deliver the kind of results we need. This is where Enterprise 2.0 comes into its own.

By Carruthers via Aide-mémoire

1 comment:

Ric said...

Even at their very best, top-down approaches will only deal with the 30% of an organisation's knowledge that is explicit. Much of the rest will remain invisible, because the Enterprise1.0 can only work from what it already knows, which will generally only find what it already knows, but a little faster.

Enterprise2.0 holds the promise of eliciting the rest - the stuff that people don't know they know until they need to answer a question, or from emergent connections 'across the silos'.

I am starting to think that E2.0 is only possible via revolution ... because it subverts hierarchy and bypasses politics (the very things that keep the people who need to change in their positions), maybe the first time your senior management will 'get it' is when their heads are on the chopping block.