Simon Terry

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A Great Privilege

The ability to keep working and improving is a great privilege for someone building a portfolio career. Not every day is a success but you learn and improve as the game goes on. When you are in the game, things happen. You can still make your way and make change happen. Value your chances inside the game and reflect on those struggling to get in.

Stay in

The last month has been a very busy month for me. I have been to speak as Microsoft Ignite in Orlando as a Microsoft MVP and reconnect with a global community of IT professionals who are changing the world of work. I have begun my work at Lantern Pay as an executive and advisor. Another startup I have advised has raised significant capital and created an exit event. Change Agents Worldwide is growing well, attracting new members and attracting client attention. My board roles see organisations that are performing well and realising exciting new opportunities for growth. At the same time, I have had some exciting new projects arrive as clients grapple with agile work, collaboration, working out loud, innovation and the future of HR. 

I set out over 4 years ago to build a portfolio career. That portfolio is now coming in to place. All this looks like success but it doesn’t feel that way. As we all know you don’t judge success on the outcomes alone. Some times the outcomes are temporary, just luck or timing. Some of the things listed above are beginnings not endings. If you had asked me a year ago, I would have described my position as on the brink of failure. Experiments had failed. Projects had fallen through. Bank balances were low. My confidence was waning.

What’s the difference a year later? I stayed in the game. I kept my faith and worked to build my portfolio of work, business and opportunities. By keeping going, I learned from my experiments. By keeping going, I made new contacts. By keeping going, I let time help me in growing reputation, connections and decision-making. Most of all, in the last year I became a whole lot clearer on what success looks like for me and what I need to do. As I had forecast earlier on this blog, I became a lot more disciplined in my approach to the business, to my products, my relationships and to my opportunities.
Value Your Privilege



One of the other things that became clear to me over the last year was the privilege of the position I have. No matter how glum I felt a year ago, people were still envious of my position & future opportunities. Those conversations helped me to understand that my past advantages are helping my success today. 

Understanding this made me value my privileged position more. 
Whatever you do, many more people want to get in to the game, but can’t see the opportunity to start. Whether it is financial position, networks, experience or mindsets, there are many barriers for those who haven’t yet begun. Many people have helped you achieve your current position in the game, whether that is family, friends sponsors or mentors. Having cleared those barriers puts you in a privileged position. Value the opportunities that come from this position. Work hard & learn to make the most of them.

The most important part of being privileged is working to help others overcome those barriers. I know many others helped me get started on this portfolio career. Many of those friends and partners still do provide support, contacts, insights and opportunities. This recognition reiterates to me the importance of reaching out and helping others build their careers and their work opportunities. We can all be better collaborators, coaches, sponsors and mentors for those starting out or struggling on their journey. There is a lot we can do to help each other stay in the game.  

The Work of Civil Society

Last night I read Niall Ferguson’s The Great Degeneration, an extended essay on potential causes for slowing growth and rising political and social issues in Western Economies. While I don’t necessarily agree with every aspect of the argument, I do agree with one of the key principles that shapes the essay. Our societies and their performance is shaped by the institutions we have and in particular by the relationships we have beyond commercial transactions, our civil society. Our institutions matter in many cases to the extent they foster or impede these civil relationships. 

For organisations, wanting to improve financial performance and effectiveness, their employee’s civil society can play a critical role. Culture and the institutions that shape and reinforce it matter for every organisation.  
Joining in

At University, I was a joiner. I was a member of many clubs, both sporting, social and political. In my twenties, I lost the these civil society connections and my world was narrower for it. Travel, relocations, changing jobs and life’s many demands became excuses for focusing solely on my personal achievement and life. My community relationships and connections were poorer for it. 

Part way through my time at NAB, I rediscovered the importance of these social connections in enriching life and shaping your experience of society. I realised I valued belonging. I became a joiner and even took on community leadership roles in not for profit arts and sporting organisations. I reminded myself of the value of volunteering and meeting new connections in my community. The rewards are many. I know far more people in my local communities, I have the rewards of making a contribution and these civil relationships have led to commercial relationships too. 

One of the reasons I am so passionate about Change Agents Worldwide is that it offers those working on change in large organisations their own civil society. Change leadership can be lonely, hard and isolating. A community of peers can provide information, skills, trust and support. I have seen the same surge of civil society in client organisations when we work on collaboration.  They are always richer for the connections, understanding and trust built even if the participation is only in non-work social groups. 

New Institutions 

As work changes, organizations and individuals are going to need a panoply of new institutions to support the civil society around work. I was recently interviewed for the Breaking Banks Asia Pacific podcast with Simon Spencer. Simon asked what innovations I expected around the future of work. 

My response that I hoped we might see a return to the flowering of financial institutions of the late 19th century. As the economy industrialised, workers and business people came together to found a range of social financial services institutions. Niall Ferguson highlights the effect of these mutuals, friendly societies, building societies and more. Many have lost momentum under the onslaught of global financial services competition and competition from the social safety net of welfare state. 

When we look at the changing work dynamics of the next century, there will be a demand for new social institutions to help underpin the changing relationships of civil society. Our government social safety nets are fraying in societies with ageing populations and political deadlock.  We need new social institutions to help with new contingency of work, the risks and opportunities new work and the structural adjustment of lost work. 

This opportunity is more than the asset sharing of the sharing economy. The challenge and opportunity is to create new models of social risk sharing, social support and to found these on deeper connection and trust in our civil relationships. The robots win if it is each person for themselves. The great success of human civilisation has not been our intelligence, it has been our collaboration and our ability to invent institutions to sustain and grow that collaboration.

For organisations, the challenge now is to begin to consider the future culture they need and how their present institutions and actions support this need. Organisations that work with talent in volatile networks compete on more than just a narrow subset of employee experience.  The field of competition opens to the entire gamut of social relationships, including purpose, reputation, trust agility, security, and more. If your sole model of adaptation is a period restructure from one inflexible model to another then you will lose.  One of the reasons I am a passionate advocate for community managers in organisations is that the community building work that they do and the strategic value they create runs far beyond the collaboration platform or social network. These communities are new relationships and the foundations of new civil society as they grow and mature. 

We can’t predict the future well. However, we can shape it by creating it. That act of creation will take new civil society within and without organisations.  We need leaders and change agents to foster these new relationships and institutions.  

Choose AND

In business, we are used to making priority calls. We can’t do everything. It always feels like we are up against a hard choice between A OR B.  Limited resources must be carefully allocated. When it comes to collaboration in a community, this attitude can get in the way of inclusion. A community can embrace AND using the diversity, contributions, and engagement of all participants. A community doesn’t have to choose OR, it can choose AND. The generative potential of a diverse network is one of the key benefits of collaborative communities. Don’t squash that for a false choice.

The Limits Don’t Apply

The traditional decision-making constraints of business are all driven by a flow of resources, decisions, and priorities from the top of the hierarchy down. When allocation is the principal business challenge then we must make either/or choices.

The resources owned by the hierarchy are limited because the flow of information is limited. The hierarchy must manage with limited information of the circumstances of the business, surpluses and shortages in the plan and often a generic understanding of the processes, roles and human capabilities in the network. Hierarchies narrow choices and standardise options to make the complexity of the network easier to manage. In traditional businesses which sought to scale proven processes, the costs of this approach in loss of information, flexibility and potential were overwhelmed by the scale advantages of standardised execution.

The networks of a collaborative community have the ability to manage a wirearchy, Jon Husband’s concept of ‘a dynamic two-way flow of power and authority, based on knowledge, trust, credibility and a focus on results, enabled by interconnected people and technology’. Standardise models, limited information and simple either/or choices can be exchanged for the information of the people on the spot, the capabilities of the individual and the needs of the business and its customers.  The wirearchy can also pull from beyond the organisational resources extending its reach beyond the organisational boundary to pull in information, resources and people needed to manage delivery.

The fast-moving digital economy has put a priority on businesses having the ability to learn, adapt and leverage opportunities, not just scale execution of standard processes. A collaborative community working as a wirearchy better reflects this goal.

Nice Theory, So How Does it Apply to Collaboration in Communities

When we apply our typical constraints mindsets to the launch of a collaborative community, there can be a lot of debate around limiting the employee choices of use of collaboration. Many organisations develop prescriptive what to use when guides trying to channel the fluid collaboration of knowledge work as if it is a production line process. Other organisations focus on restricting their employees valid uses and objectives for collaboration in an effort to ensure efficiency in a community process. Some even go as far as trying to prescribe particular activities and use cases. The mindset underlying all these efforts is the traditional hierarchical management by constraint.

However, collaboration in communities cannot be programmed. Effective collaboration in communities is emergent. Organisations can scaffold the development of value in the community, helping users to more quickly find value and leverage collaboration, but they do not need to constrain the choices for users. Users will make rational decisions to allocate their time, efforts and potential to solve the issues that matter to them, their peers and the organisation. Well managed this is a highly inclusive process where people bring new ideas, new capabilities and new approaches into the organisation and socialise them with their peers to find the best fit to the organisational and personal goals of the community. This process of finding a community fit is an adaptive learning process and a source of new abundance in organisations.

Fostering this process requires organisations to signal that AND is a valid option. The need to encourage inclusion and value the diversity of approaches. Employees can pursue multiple paths simultaneously reflecting different circumstances and capabilities. Employees are given the opportunity to engage as they see fit, not forced to engage in the standard way. The test of success is fitness or as the definition of wirearchy puts it “a focus on results”.  If the results are being achieved, does it matter that everyone got there a different way? Working out loud will create transparency and learning to help align better approaches and foster sharing of success. In time, this process of diverse experimentation will discover new standards and new approaches.

We have a lot yet to learn about new ways of working. What is clear is that we will get there faster if we embrace the diverse power of AND.

The Now of Work

When you spend a lot of time focused on helping organizations prepare their people for the future of work, you are in danger of forgetting to describe how the present state of work has shifted. 

Agile is the Goal

Only a few years ago, advocates of organizational change were actively proposing new models for the organization. Terms like Responsive organization, Holocratic organization,  Adaptive organization and the like were being promoted widely in the search for influence. These models all shared similar goals of aligning the organization around purpose, improving its effectiveness and enabling self-empowered and self-organising teams to get their work done with less dysfunction. 

In Australia, at least, the debate has a clear winner. You know an idea is hot when all your inbound client queries are asking about it.  Agile is the management practice that has swept  out from software development and now captures the attention of organizational leaders. Agile has the diversity of approaches and the flexibility to mean different things for these organizations. However all of them share a goal of being more innovative for customers, more effective for their purpose and more engaging for their people. 

Digital Transformation is the Work

Everything is or will be digital. We are no longer just building digital channels or digitising process.  We aren’t just moving from on premise to the cloud or mobile.  When Microsoft is talking AI first applications and the battle is for the winning personal assistant, we are beginning a new era of always connected, data-driven experiences powered by massive computing power. 

Enabling digital transformation is the core program of work. Radically better customer and people experiences are now possible. New and existing competitors are bringing them to market at the pace of agile projects and the aggressive disregard for traditional business models of startups. 

People are the Key

We’ve spent the last decades focused on the technology opportunities. Organizations are now realising the value of their people. Restructures and downsizing still dominate the structural adjustment across industry as it adapts to new leaner digital models. 

However, positive signals suggest the future is not entirely bots. People experience is on the rise as a topic of debate. Organizations are as focused as ever on attracting and retaining the talent to win in a digital economy. This includes an awareness that climbing a greasy pole of hierarchy is not everyone’s sole goal. 

Importantly, Organizations are investing in the capabilities of their people to survive and thrive in this digital landscape. New capabilities of learning, leadership, collaboration and innovation are keenly sought. People need new practices for a digital economy and I’m seeing clients tackling personal knowledge mastery, working out loud, Adaptive leadership and lean experimentation as a result. 

We mustn’t forget the fitness of a digital organisation is its ability to learn & adapt at scale. More an more organizations are preparing people and systems for that competitive advantage in a complex changing world. 

Collaboration is the Platform

Last week was a big week for collaboration in the organization. Microsoft put Teams at the heart of its Microsoft365 strategy and recommitted to Yammer with a new roadmap to support wider ‘outer loop’ collaboration. Workplace by Facebook announced Walmart had chosen them bringing on the world’s largest private client to collaboration across its wide community of associates. 

Collaboration is the platform for digital transformation.  Working out loud brings transparency to foster alignment and accountability. A new openness enables learning, generosity discovery and serendipity of work. Open work helps organizations solve problems faster and drive digital cultural change more edffectively. Ultimately  open collaboration connects customer need to the insights and capabilities of the organization fostering innovation. 

In a connected digital age, nobody is an island of performance. Powering our people with new effective collaboration tools that support agility and enable digital transformation is the key challenge people are tackling now. 

Don’t wait for some abstract future to make change. That moment will be too late. Culture change and new work practices are endless journeys of mastery.  Start now. Your competitors will have. 

Stopping Multi-level Marketing Social: Value Influence over Rank

Everywhere you go in social media you find people practicing the commonly recommended strategies: win followers, promote yourself relentlessly, leverage SEO strategies, use the magic words, always comment on trendy topics, keep it short, simple, easy and engaging, share repeatedly at different times, and so on. These strategies have confused influence with rank.

Is Social just Multi-level Marketing 2.0?

If your social network is not social, in the sense of supporting human interaction, then it is simply an advertising and sales network. We know how those work. They are multi-level marketing schemes like Amway, Avon, Herbalife, and so on.

Most people have had an experience of meeting a multi-level marketer. In general, we find multi-level marketing to be something we would prefer to avoid. Multi-level marketing schemes are network sales and marketing systems designed to reward people for their rank in accumulating followers. The bigger your downstream the more money you have a chance to make. In multi-level marketing it doesn’t matter if a person in the downstream actually know you, it just matters that they are in your downstream. Value comes from volume. The negative experiences that most people have from multi-level marketing come from this relentless drive for volume. Value to followers and human relationships are completely lost in the need to pump the numbers.

The commonly recommended social media strategies are turning social media into multi-level marketing where everything is a numbers game so that you can sell your rank in the system, not to your followers, but to advertisers for return.

Saving Social: Influence over Rank

In my work in collaboration inside organisations, I have been a passionate champion of the reality that numbers of employees using a platform alone is not a goal. The strategies to win the numbers game distract from a business focus on value creation opportunities and can at times even be be counterproductive to the focus on work and value for users and the organisation. In this work, I need to reiterate to organisational leaders that what matters more than rank or follower counts is influence. Influence in networks is the currency that enables a leader to create value.

We need to remember the same principles in social media. Influence comes from relationships, trust and conversations. There’s no guarantee that scale delivers influence. I have seen plenty of people with hundreds of thousands of twitter followers who get no response to their tweets.  There are no magic set of topics, words or phrases to create influence. Influence comes from connecting personally with people and helping them achieve something that matters to them.

Kevin Kelly has written about the idea that all we need for success is 1000 True Fans, people who we deeply influence. This lowers the necessary rank for success to a much more human scale in social media. Importantly, it also focuses our attention on the extent of our influence and our relationships with others.  The best way to save social from the numbers game is to continue to build the niches where networks create real human relationships of influence and avoid the multi-level marketing. If those playing the numbers and rank game end up playing on their own, their influence & value will collapse.

 

#MSIgnite Day 4:

I spent Day 4 at Microsoft Ignite hearing stories of how Yammer is being put to use in organisations around the world to realise the potential of people and to provide a platform to connect organisations in their digital transformation.

A Spirit of Generosity

The day was full of many great stories and lots of practical advice which is a mark of the generosity of the Yammer community. It began with an update on a very familiar one as Al Reid of NAB shared stories of NAB’s network. Matt Dodd of Bankwest also shared practical advice using the Value Maturity Model from their experience of creating a thriving network on Yammer. Tom Kretzmer from Westinghouse also ran a session on Yammer for IT, but sadly I wasn’t able to hear it. Melanie Hohertz and Simon Denton also did a great session, including costumes on how to use both Yammer and Teams together, weaving together both the inner and outer circle. The MVP panel saw the audience tap into the expertise and experience of Martina Grom, Chris Slemp, Noah Sparks, Melanie Hohertz and Darrell Webster. Like last year, the discussion in the room saw members of the audience leaping in to share their ideas and contribute answers to questions (especially Lesley Crook of Change Agents Worldwide and Miguel Zlot of Coors)

In the MVP panel, Noah Sparks highlighted that fostering a culture of generosity is one of the key elements in the growing maturity of a Yammer community. The Yammer community at Microsoft Ignite reflected this at the highest level. After each session, audience members hung around to answer questions and solve each other’s problems. Some of the most creative conversations and vigorous exchanges have been over food, coffee or on the long walks across the halls. Consultants shared experiences, IP and approaches with their competitors. The generosity of this sharing was because they all recognise that change is hard and that we are better when the collective practice of Yammer adoption lifts.

Change is Hard

I noted in yesterday’s review that much of the advice on adoption was consistent.  Many of the challenges discussed across the four days are consistent too:

  • The fickle nature of leadership support: keep focused on strategy and value, tell stories to bring the value to life, focus on the executive’s business needs, keep pushing and leverage competition among executives to find a way forward
  • Explaining the benefits of collaboration and accounting for the value: have a strategy, gather the stories of success, follow those stories to the hard value in financial systems, be prepared to leverage champions and employees to advocate the value too.
  • The realities of winning user engagement, effort, time and attention in a busy world with significant business pressures
  • Areas in which Yammer still lacks features or the integration with the Microsoft365 suite to deliver: many of these are on the roadmap, but it is useful to hear the successes, human changes and hacks others have used to move beyond the missing options – I spoke to a financial services client on how their existing employee compliance processes were actually better protections than a technology feature that their risk department was seeking, because informed and accountabilities removes the behaviour at source.
  • The appeal of the shiny new thing: always

Many of the speakers have been successful leaders of Yammer networks for years. Audience members can at times feel that the stories of success feel out of reach. However, there was a lot of humility on display in all the talks to counter this with mistakes, missed opportunities and ongoing challenges openly discussed. There is no moment when a collaboration platform is done. A collaboration platform is never fully deployed. A community of humans keeps growing and changing. With that change will come new opportunities and new challenges.  That’s why there is always more learning, more potential and more work to be done. For all those struggling there is hope and reward for persistence when a community gets it and begins to engage in the journey to maturity.

We are tempted with our process focus to think of adoption like deployment, a series of steps to be done to move to completion. Many of the questions in sessions were appeals for simple steps. The speakers did their best to help, but they had to note that each community is different, improvisation, experimentation, and adaptation are required to fit the purpose, context, capabilities and culture of the  Adoption is not a playbook followed end to end. It is more like a work of street performance art, moving through phases woven from modules that respond to the needs and the circumstances (an idea I have borrow from and explored in more detail in the Experience Economy a book on the delivery of customer experiences)

Leadership

The flowing adaptive nature of adoption sets the context for the need for leadership. Discussion of executive leadership support was everywhere. However, there’s a more important form of leadership that must be fostered to win the prize of the modern workplace. Every speaker today, every audience member is a leader. Anyone tasked with building collaboration or leading a digital transformation has to be a leader. Digital transformation is more than technology or process change. It is a change in culture of organisations, Changing culture in communities with deep history takes leadership, both hierarchical and distributed.

Leadership is not a hierarchical position. Leadership is the work of influencing others to act to make themselves and the world better. That well describes the ambitions of the Yammer community at Microsoft Ignite. Change leadership is not safe and is rarely easier. The leadership dimension of adoption work lies at the heart of the challenges above. Successful modern workplaces don’t just have executives who get it and lead their teams forward with purpose and passion. They have community managers and change champions working to put in place the structures around which vibrant community behaviours can emerge. Most importantly of all, they have users who take the small daily act of bravery of sharing their work, their story, their assistance or their challenge on the platform.  Digital workplaces leverage all the human potential in the organisation.  That leverage is not just to do. It is also the leverage of finding and working with the leadership talents of all people.

To be able to leverage the benefits of this leadership we must remember that we need our digital organizations to support an environment of psychological safety such that people can take the risks of sharing, learning and working together on change. Leadership and role modeling in the community will build the trust and the examples necessary for success.

Gratitude

My visit to Microsoft Ignite ends with this post as client work calls me back to Australia with a day to go in the event. I know all the sessions are shared online so I will have some catching up to do when my plane lands, not just the last day but also the sessions I have missed in other streams. My thanks go to all who have shared their work across these days.  I would also like to thank Microsoft teams who have made the event possible and whose work was so well showcased at Ignite. Thanks especially to the Yammer team for their passion, support. I look forward to seeing them all again soon. I learn so much from them every time we meet.

There are two teams who made Ignite a whole lot of fun and helped push me to learn more and get more out of the event. The first is the Yammer MVP crew (Lonya French, Amy Dolzine, Melanie Hohertz, Becky Benishek, Simon Denton, Chris Slemp, Noah Sparks, Tom Kretzmer, Kevin Crossman, Martina Grom, Lesley Crook, Darrell Webster, Cai Kjaer, Scott Ward and the virtual participant Benjamin Elias). The second was the REgarding365 team, led by Alistair Pugin and Darrell Webster as community reporters, who set a standard of content creation, thought leadership and energy that was unmatched at the event. Thanks to all.

Thanks also to everyone who has followed along, liked or shared these posts or provided feedback on their value. The response each day has been a a wonderful reward.

#MSIgnite Day 3: Loops, Change and Platforms for Digital Transformation

Day 3 at Microsoft Ignite was again focused on the role of collaboration in the Modern Workplace and the changes required to support people to engage and be more effective on these platforms. I had two talks leveraging the Value Maturity Model on the day

Connecting the Inner and Outer Loop

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George Box famously said “All models are wrong. Some models are useful.” The more time that I spend with the idea that the Modern Workplace has an inner loop of high velocity focused conversations and outer loop of discovery and diversity the truer Box’s maxim seems. The two-loops model undoubtedly works to explain the position of the products and helps organisations and users understand the connected roles of the two tools in the Microsoft365 ecosystem.

I spent time at the Yammer Booth in the Expo hall talking to people about their questions and views. It was clear from these conversations that the commitments demonstrated to the Yammer roadmap and the new position have reassured many customers. The focus of customer questions was mostly how and why Yammer might coexist with Teams in an organisation. Discussing the two patterns of work and their interactions helped these customers to address their questions.

The intuitiveness and simplicity of the approach also belies some complexities. Firstly, We work in context and our context will come from both loops. A critical question that will need to be addressed in the ongoing evolution of this approach is what are the interactions and patterns of the connections, interactions and exchange of information between the two loops. Over time this behaviour can shape the product features ad change required for business success. These answers will be found in the working behaviour of people in effective digital organisations.

Second, these loops are complex networks compromising multiple overlapping subnetworks and stretching to the edges of the organisation and beyond. As Teams get larger and more active, I can see a teams user overhead issue that other chat products often experience. This could take the form of the forgotten channel or be the challenge of managing growing numbers of channels and messages.  Dynamic group membership, integration and community management tools may help ameliorate this, but the jury is out for some time. Growing maturity of practice in organisations using both Teams and Yammer will surface new challenges and opportunities of this approach.

Changing Work Interactions

Much of the day was listening to customer case studies of the journey of changing interactions in the workplace to support Yammer adoption. I heard case studies from both Diageo and GSK. I also heard Scott Ward’s advice on the tips and tricks of using gamification to build new habits and sustain change, engaging rewards and aligning them to intrinsic motivations.

As the community management and change adoption of collaboration platforms is a strong and mature discipline, it was not surprising to see consistency across the conversations about what it takes to deliver effective change and the business value that leaders expect.

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Yammer collaboration involves new ways of working so a key part of each of these stories was communication and sense-making. Creating and sharing stories across the organisation is a key opportunity to reinforce and build on this success.

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Executive engagement remains a key topic of conversation and as ever varies from the amazingly active to the distracted and busy leader focusing elsewhere. Making a case for the strategic value of collaboration matters to engage these leaders. Executive leadership can accelerate a collaboration and cultural change but it is not the only way. Great leaders make the investment to achieve their target culture for the organisation.  Clearly it is harder without the support of hierarchical power and authority, but good progress can be made by those well aligned even in the absence of investment and  If you cannot win a leader first time, another opportunity comes up on the transition of their successor. Whatever you do, don’t get disheartened by the swings and roundabouts of executive support. Have a strategy, deliver value and they will always come back. The point of my Breaking Down the Value of Yammer Post session was to show executives and users how you can find value and uses in a single post. 

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Strong executive sponsorship at Diageo

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Showing the value of re-engagement at GSK

Community Management played a critical role in all these case studies. Lesley Crook outlined some key roles that community managers play as stewards of business value in their networks.

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Platforms for Digital Transformation

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Scott Ward, Cai Kjaer and I presented on Yammer as a Platform for Digital Transformation.  There is not an organisation in the world that is not at least considering its digital disruption transformation. The forces of change are irreversible and the evidence that new business models present opportunities and threats is clear. 

The point we wanted to emphasise is that digital transformation is more than replacing your processes with new digital wiring. The opportunity is to transform business models to deliver to customer needs in new ways, reorganising the way they work and creating a digital culture. This culture demands new transparency, new accountabilities, new agility, new leverage of customer insights and new collaboration organisation wide. We need to balance the focus & speed of inner circle agility with a wider awareness, alignment, & diversity of thought in the outer circle. 

If you are going to stand up stakeholder groups for each part of your digital transformation initiative, connect those streams in Yammer to help cross-stream awareness, build collaboration and deliver cultural change. Organisations that share a common context in the outer loop of collaboration are more effective in all their work. 

Digital transformation is not a technology problem. Digital technology and process change is easier with new cloud applications. The part that takes work is the customer insight, business model experiments and culture change. Yammer can help with all of that. 

Most importantly of all Yammer can help you identify the Change Agents and communities that will make all change possible. 

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Three Closing Questions:

What is your strategy to use collaboration to fulfil your digital transformation journey?

What investments in community are you prepared to make to have better customer insights, better employee autonomy and new levels of change? 

What culture do you want and how do your people connect in new interactions?