Saturday, February 14, 2015

Social business and business transformation: where are we heading?

I am preparing my talk at the Henley Conference Forum 25 and 26 Feb this month. Reflecting on my publication on Social Strategies in Action: Driving business transformation (2013), my experience in the past 12 months driving business transformation within a highly regulated financial institution , and on McKinsey's latest research on Transforming business through social tools, I understand the huge challenge leaders are facing and I am also excited about the future.

Whether you call in Social Business, Enterprise 2.0 or use of social media in the extended enterprise, it is now seeded in most enterprises and is considered becoming mainstream. We are finally scratching beyond the surface, and get ready for deeper transformation.

What do I mean? Here is how I experience it and where I am playing my humble part to shape:
1. Enterprise 2.0 is no longer about introducing new digital social tools to employees
2. Enterprise 2.0 is about embracing a new way of working to create value in a much more networked world, and it means rethinking what "management" means and what management processes and practices are relevant in this new world. It also means employees need to relearn how to behave when they are not being "managed" (or perhaps for some being "control") in a traditional way. 
3. Enterprise 2.0 is about empowering employees to change old habits and build new reflexes on an individual level in the context of doing their day-to-day work. The change is on a micro-moment level and so it is hard because it is so personal, so real and so intense. 
4. Enterprise 2.0 requires Leadership 2.0 (which I advocated in 2009) and it means making a conscious effort to be mindful and cultivate good practices around communication, conversation, listening and dialogue, and feeling comfortable navigating in an uncertain environment. In an open and network enterprise, this is required at all levels, not just a requirement for leaders.
5. As all of the above happen, it means that we (leaders, managers, employees) will build new reflexes, redefining the norm, working together, communicating, collaborating in a different way, And the business workflow and day-to-day process as a result will be transformed. 

Now that the real hard work begins, as we pay attention to people, and how they communicate and how they work together. How can we create an ecology that create value, unleash employees' potential, help our employees and even our clients to grow and learn? I expect a lot more experiment and innovation in this space.

I look forward to exploring my ideas further at the upcoming Henley Conference in Feb, and with my blog readers here.


Saqib Ali said...

Dr. Cheuk,

In the aforementioned progress path, how do you tackle the fragmentation of engagement ecosystems within a single organization?


Bonnie Cheuk said...

Bring those engagement/communication tools with overlapping functions together, and also allow employees to use different tools to suit their hands/needs at different times. So streamline and replace outdated tools, but do not assume one size fit all. More in the next post.