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Latest Social Business News & Articles

A Cloud Based Intranet, Courtesy of eXo

In the four years since I last took a good look at the eXo platform, quite a bit has changed. Back in the day when I was a web and intranet consultant, eXo positioned itself as the premier open source web content management (WCM) platform — a more extensible platform than out of the box applications like Drupal. I recently had the pleasure of chatting with Patrice Lamarque, vice president of products for eXo and we discussed eXo's new premium cloud offering, its new marketing focus and the changing enterprise software market.

 

Social Fears and Anxiety in the Enterprise

Social Fears and Anxiety in the EnterpriseIn my work as a consultant I frequently come across organizations that appear terrified of allowing or enabling social features in the enterprise.  It doesn't matter if it's SharePoint’s newsfeed, MySites, Yammer or other social tools — the thought of introducing these tools internally meets with resistance.

2013 - The Year Social Business Got Real, What it Means, What's Next

2013 - The Year Social Business Got Real, What it Means, What's NextJust recently I've seen a number of industry discussions that allude to the death of social business, posts about the declining interest in communities, big moves from industry peers who are moving on and conversations about how social marketing is now mostly blended with advertising.

What's happened? Have we lost our way or is the path just rockier than we expected?

2014 Wish List ... from Robin Daniels

Social Business, 2014 Wish List ... from Robin DanielsI wish 2014 becomes the year when we put users first, not technology. Technology should be an empowering tool to free knowledge workers everywhere to do things they never thought possible. Instead of thinking about technology as a way to control, we should think about technology as a way to liberate.

I wish 2014 is the year when we move from "Mobile first" to "User first." It shouldn't be about the device or devices, but about what's best for the user to get anything done, regardless of job, title, location or industry. Software companies should collaborate to make this priority number one to help information workers everywhere. — Robin Daniels, head of enterprise product marketing, Box

Title image by Amodiovalerio Verde (Flickr).

SharePoint, Yammer, Office 365 Sessions Dominate Microsoft Conference #SPC14

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SharePoint Conference 2014 is just a few months away. The Microsoft-sponsored event runs March 3 through 6 at the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas. Microsoft is firming up the roster of keynote speakers and setting the agendas for about 200 sessions on the increasingly integrated worlds of SharePoint, Yammer, Office, Office 365 and more.

Marketed as an event to help "connect, reimagine and transform," there will be some 24 inclusive tracks for the four major audiences of IT professionals, developers, executives and power users.

Cell Phone Habits of Highly Annoying People [Infographic]

MadonnaYou have to love a business that has the gumption to ban Madonna — simply for having the audacity to use her cell phone. But that's just what happened in October after the performer dared to ignore the strict no-talking and no-texting policy at the Alamo Drafthouse, an indie cinema chain known for its commitment to cinema-going etiquette.

It was probably the smartest marketing move the chain has made since opening its first location in 1997. It not only demonstrated that it treats everyone equally, but also proved that nonstop texting and talking are simply out of control.

And it left a lot of people wishing they had the power to do exactly what management at that New York City theater did to a performer who clearly thought she was more important than those around her: Stand up, speak out and tell someone to get off the phone.

5 Ways Benefits Management Can Improve the Employee Experience

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When you think about streamlining business processes, what comes to mind?

Better collaboration between sales and marketing? Better alignment between legal and research and development?

There’s no doubt there’s a lot that can be improved to facilitate better communication, collaboration and analysis within the business environment. But one area that seems to get overlooked is human resources and benefits.

Webinar Recap: Have Social Business Tools Killed the Intranet?

Webinar Recap: Have Social Business Tools Killed the Intranet?Intranets have for many years been a place where companies disseminate information to employees in a top down, static way. As workers become more remotely distributed, the need for online collaboration tools is butting up against the concept of the traditional intranet. Combining the two is a hot trend in the social business world.

Harmon.ie Debuts Combined Office 365, Yammer, SharePoint Mobile App

Harmon.ie Debuts Combined Office 365, Yammer + SharePoint Mobile AppMicrosoft still hasn't produced an Office app for the iPad, so partners like harmon.ie have been left to fill in the mobile Office holes. Now, harmon.ie has taken the next step by releasing a combined Office 365, Yammer and SharePoint app for iOS, Android and BlackBerry devices.

9 Ways to Avoid 'Meeting Mania'

Social Business, 9 Ways to Avoid 'Meeting Mania'Many people claim that meetings are a waste of time these days. For those who don’t know how to run them or why to have them, they probably are. But the idea that you don’t need any meetings is a bit silly — like banning something people don’t like just because they’re too lazy to regulate it. 

More and more I see some companies who’ve stopped having meetings because the person who usually runs them refuses to admit they dawdle and use meetings to satiate their egos. No wonder so many employees are in ecstasy at the notion of not having to attend yet another aimless meeting.

2014 Wish List ... from David Diamond

2014 Wish List ... from David DiamondMy wish for 2014 is that the value of creativity and inspiration will stop playing a supporting role to the pursuit of ROI and measureable goals. Ideas are the only reason a business exists. And while the people that come up with ideas most often might not have C-suite titles, they are often the most important people on payroll.

Let’s stop pretending that business is a numbers thing. Business is an ideas thing, and it’s time the ideas people were better appreciated and compensated for their intangible gifts — gifts that are not easily replaced, and gifts that cannot be taught in degree programs. — David Diamond, director of global marketing for Picturepark; author of DAM Survival Guide.

Title image by Amodiovalerio Verde (Flickr).

2013 in Review: Intranet Deja Vu All Over Again

Intranet talk appears to be on a three-year hamster wheel in which we have come full circle. So what is it that causes this cycle? It may be caused by the failure of intranet professionals to point to the higher ground  — an integrated and holistic employee experience strategy. Isn't it about time to stop vacillating between concepts that are barely discernible from one another (e.g., ESNs, Intranets, employee portals, etc) and reach for the higher goal?

2014 Wish List ... from Ana Silva

2014 Wish List ... from Ana SilvaIn 2014 I wish that business leaders, managers and employees embrace uncertainty and find the courage to question the practices and structures that have governed organizations for more than 100 years. Only then can we start to develop truly social businesses in the sense of connected, deeply human and agile organizations. — Ana Silva, head of digital and social media in a multinational company, lecturer on Enterprise 2.0 and Social Business

Title image by Amodiovalerio Verde (Flickr).

New Report: Understand Your Audience Before Using Social Media

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Social media isn't a one-size-fits-all proposition, and US companies are leading the way in the use of social campaigns. Those are two of the key findings in a new report from the Useful Social Media (USM) group. 

The report, “Following Uncle Sam: National Social Media Marketing,” surveyed more than 300 members of the USM community. A social media campaign, the survey discovered, needs to have messages that are “much more tailored to their audience demographics than previously thought.”

2014 Predictions: What Side of the Future Are You On?

Here’s two very different sayings about the future. The first makes the case for effective prediction as something like blunt force trauma:

Any useful idea about the future should appear to be ridiculous. — Jim Dators

I always hope that the ideas I offer about the future will have that sort of cataclysmic, zen-enlightenment, lightning clap of emotive force, but the reality is that a lot of the future turns out to be a sequel to the echoing kabooms of the past. And so I find this seemingly circumscript but deeply enigmatic statement just as compelling:

The past is the new future.

2014 Wish List ... from David Lavenda

341332497_d31cd15622_m.jpgThat we recognize the human element of the technology we aspire to use. The introduction of new technologies such as collaboration and social tools creates disruption for our colleagues, so take their concerns into consideration. The move to a mobile "anywhere/anytime" enterprise is not about doling out smartphones and tablets; it’s about fundamentally changing the way we work. So consider business needs and people concerns when rolling out new technology.

May the coming year be a year of health, happiness and prosperity. — David Lavenda, product strategy executive, harmon.ie

Image by Amodiovalerio Verde (Flickr).

Intranets: Too Big to Fail?

As contradictory as it sounds, some intranets, social platforms, knowledge exchanges and internal communities run the risk of being too successful. They're in danger of reaching a stage in their development where their size, success and growth can cause complacency.

'Have it Your Way' SharePoint: Two Paths, Many Options

Social business,SharePointMany of the conversations I've had over the last year were filled with questions and concerns about the future of SharePoint and what the addition of Office 365 would bring to the mix. Microsoft answered some of these questions late last week and provided some insight into its plans going forward. With this information, organizations can breathe a little easier and plan a little better for the future.

Gamification: Game With the Concept?

Next year will be the year gamification fails. It’s a concept built on hype, and 80 percent of all programs will die by 2014, according to Gartner

Rajat Paharia disagrees — 100 percent. The founder of Bunchball, a provider of online gamification solutions, he thinks it is only logical, in a data-driven world, that organizations implement gamification strategies to motivate employees and customers, and recognize, reward and encourage a deeper learning of concepts for better business outcomes.

Which side of the gamification hemisphere are you on? Is it a fad or here to stay? We caught up this week with a few industry insiders to find out what they had to say.

The Modern Intranet: A Mobile, Social, Collaborative Decision Support Platform

How do you define something in a state of flux, that supplies different features and functions for different organizations and whose success depends on how well an organization's business strategy is reflected in its stated requirements? That is the challenge of defining the modern intranet.