What social business stories intrigued readers in 2014? Technology stories about what is working — and what is not — were popular, not surprisingly.
Readers also gravitated to articles that examined deeper trends underway in the workforce. But why listen to me rehash these themes when you can read them first hand yourself?
A Sampling of Popular Posts
1) In 5 Tech Trends We'll See More of in 2014 — the undisputed most popular story of the year — Frank Palermo looked at things like the evolution of the bring your own device trend, the maturity of big data and sensor-driven business models. Tweet to Frank Palermo.
Big data tools and applications will mature to the point where huge volumes of data can be absorbed, synthesized and integrated into systems for smarter and faster decision making.
Trust is a rare gift. Add on the complexities of context (e.g., personal context, company context, team or project context, country context) and trust is not the foundation for collaboration it used to be — that foundation is eroding away. So what is replacing it?
3) Does IBM have the solution to the email problem? Plenty of people were eager to read Dom Nicastro's story on IBM's Mail Next: Original in the Social Business Enterprise? #IBMConnect. Tweet to Dom Nicastro.
IBM's new solution — called "Mail Next" — is being hailed by many on Twitter today as an innovative, exceptional mail experience and a new way to consume and manage email through social-like capabilities.
There are problems with Yammer. But the problem lies not the product itself. According to David Lavenda, vice president of product strategy at Harmon.ie, the real problem is that many people who have access to it just won’t use it — or any other social network for that matter.
5) Despite setbacks with certain tools, social business as a whole had hit its stride by midyear, according to CMSWire.com Chief Editor Noreen Seebacher's piece, Aha! Social Can Transform Businesses - and Create Value, Too. Tweet to Noreen Seebacher.
B2B companies are leveraging social business both within their organizations and outside them. Common uses of B2B social business include knowledge sharing, collaborating with business partners and using social data analysis to inform product development.
6) Siobhan Fagan provoked interesting discussion with a look at something everyone loves to hate in Why Are We Still Stuck on Email?
The complaints against email are well known. It's a time suck and ineffective for large-scale communication, yet most of us still turn to it on a daily, if not hourly basis to communicate with others (with some notable exceptions succeeding without).
7) Even the best social business tools, however, cannot deliver value to a company if its employees are not engaged. This was the concept Eric Winquist looked at in Want Engaged Employees? Show Them the Big Picture? Tweet to Eric Winquist.
Many executives forget that building products and managing projects has always been an inherently social process. Humans have a fundamental desire to feel connected to one another when they work and to know their work makes a significant contribution.
8) Is Collaboration Limited by Organizational Structure? That was the question Deb Lavoy asked in a story that theorized a more collaborative organization is a more profitable one. Tweet to Deb Lavoy.
Culture may eat strategy for lunch but decision-making, reporting and budgeting structures can either birth or strangle both culture and strategy with both hands tied behind its back.
9) In The Fall of Collaboration, The Rise of Cooperation, contributor Stowe Boyd, explored the collaboration theme further. Tweet to Stowe Boyd.
We need a different take on the tools we are using to get work done, one based on open cooperation at the core of our work instead of closed collaboration running alongside it.
10) Contributor Eli Ingraham dissected three trends that are disrupting collaboration as we know it today in her popular post, The Future of Collaboration Isn't What It Used to Be. Tweet to Eli Ingraham.
"Their tenets transcend geography, generation, gender and any other constructs that divide us," she writes. "They are about how we co-exist, and co-innovate, on the planet as human beings."