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Enterprise 2.0 News & Analysis

What 5-Year-Olds Today Will Expect From the Workplace of 2029

Virtually every senior executive I meet is preoccupied with millennials. What does this strange “new species” want, think, feel and expect, they wonder.

This is because those in their early 20s represent the first generation ever to enter the workplace knowing more about a key aspect of the workplace than their more experienced colleagues -- namely technology.

IBM: Our Verse Email Beats Anything from Microsoft, Google

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The big guns of software want to close out 2014 with an email splash.

Microsoft launched its email-improver offering last week. Google earlier released its beefed-up Gmail.

It's IBM's turn today. For months, Big Blue had been showing off a new email service under the code name of "Mail Next."

Today, the company takes the blindfold off and makes it official with IBM Verse -- an offering officials say revolutionizes email by using analytics and social capabilities to simply make email more efficient. IBM Verse culminates a $100 million investment in design innovation and brings together cloud, analytics, social and security platforms "to transform the future of work."

Brad Szollose: Stop Running Your Business Like It's 1969

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Brad Szollose is a lot of things: a serial entrepreneur, former C-Level executive of a public company, a business adviser, millennial expert and an award-winning business author. So he knows a few things about which he speaks — and this is what he wants businesses to know.

Flatten your hierarchies, embrace innovation and stop expecting your employees to follow the rules, keep their mouths shut and listen. Those days are over, and they aren't coming back.

"The digital age requires a smarter worker. In today’s world, we make very sophisticated stuff that does not conform to simple rules. Responsibility, troubleshooting and decision-making have all moved to the frontline. This requires open-source style communication," he said.

Big Pictures, Micro-Moments: Takeaways from #KMWorld

Big pictures start with small parts. At last week's KMWorld conference in Washington, DC, we were given a taste of both.

Lee Rainie, director of Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project, explored a utopian vision of knowledge sharing in the future during his Thursday keynote.

A day earlier, Dion Hinchcliffe, Chief Strategy Officer at Adjuvi, shared success stories: examples of how knowledge management works in businesses that have successfully implemented and integrated social collaboration, both internally and externally.

The lessons became more granular in individual sessions: How contextual awareness in the workplace can help deliver relevant information to employees. Individual storytelling as a pathway to organizational narrative. The importance of the url for a successful search in SharePoint.

Microsoft Wants to De-Clutter Your Inbox

An empty email inbox is apparently a new status symbol in the IT industry — and vendors are lining up to provide products designed to help you manage your mail.

Google has already introduced its Inbox, and now Microsoft is bringing Graph to inboxes to make them smarter.

While the concept of intelligent inboxes is a bit of a contradiction – think of all the trash they attract – Microsoft Graph promises to change that. It will teach inboxes what you want, what you don’t want and dump the rest in a hole called Clutter.

Bye-Bye Microsoft Lync, Here Comes Skype For Business

2014-11-12 skype for business.jpgWhen Microsoft paid $8.5 billion in cash for Skype in 2011, it left some scratching their heads where the product would fit in the Microsoft ecosystem. And while Microsoft has since integrated the software into a number of its products, we now have a better sense of its future. As of next year, the Lync name will disappear and be replaced by Skype for Business.

This is not just a rebranding exercise. It involves joining together the Lync infrastructure with Skype, which includes the ability to use on-premises servers, optional integration with external communications networks and the use of the Skype interface on top of Lync.

Why the Best Digital Workplace Teams Don't Get High on Tech

“Not another new system.” “I don’t have time.” “There are so many tools already.” If any of these is a common refrain in your organization, it may be a symptom that the digital workplace team is high on technology.

Part of the problem is that shiny new technology tends to make the headlines and attract eyeballs, but we don’t always get to hear the more human stories about what makes those technologies tick.

Discussion Point: Creating Long Distance Collaboration and Teams

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You may not like everyone who works in your physical office. But at least you know people well enough to have reasons to dislike them. After all, you spend eight or more hours together every day.

Not so in the virtual world, where the lack of serendipitous encounters and chance conversations make it all the more difficult to forge connections — and increase the ease of developing biased perceptions.

Sometimes even the warmest and most considerate people sound cold and abrasive on the phone. A shy person can be misconstrued as cool and aloof. And, curiously, someone suffering from massive insecurities can seem narcissistic and egotistical because he insists on hiding behind a wall of faux achievements.

So in the age of remote workforces, when employees are increasingly connected by technology rather than shared desk space, how do we make lofty concepts like collaboration and cooperation a daily reality?

Can we force people on opposite coasts to actually like each other? Or, failing that, can we just get everyone to respect each other enough to embrace a common culture?

How to Raise Daughters Who Are Leaders

How do we prepare our children -- particularly our daughters -- to thrive in the economy of tomorrow?

We need to provide the best education within our means, which includes a lot more than the official schooling they receive. The best education I've received has come through good relationships, strong mentors and leaders who took the time to give me sound advice.

Microsoft Delve is Nice, But are Other Options Better?

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Microsoft has finally announced the release of Delve, a project that had been hidden under the code name Oslo and about which little was known.

When it was unveiled at the SharePoint conference earlier this year, then later as part of Office 365, Microsoft described it as a new way of getting working done. With it, Microsoft said, workers could find any content they needed, anywhere

Exciting as the announcement was — at least for Microsoft users — it doesn’t really extend beyond the Microsoft environment. Yes, it can find a needle in the massive haystack of your enterprise content ... as long as that content is in Microsoft applications. 

Few Businesses Use Social and Mobile to Improve Productivity

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Enterprises are using social and mobile to improve customer engagement, but not using them to improve productivity. At least that is the conclusion of new research from UK-based Advanced Business Solutions (ABS).

The findings are somewhat surprising given that the uses of enterprise social networks are largely associated with internal collaboration. But that is a myth, at least in the mid-sized enterprises segment.

Nitro: From Down Under to Over $15M

Document productivity company Nitro, originally founded in Melbourne, Australia, will beef up its San Francisco headquarters after raising $15M from Bay Area venture capitalists (VCs) in a bid to go after the big fish of document management, including Adobe and Citrix.

Nitro's products, including Nitro Pro and Nitro Cloud, enable document sharing in the enterprise. This includes the ability to sign and share documents and exchange them on mobile devices.

What (Tech) to Wear to Improve Customer Experience

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The Internet of Things (IoT) has really begun to take shape over the past few years. Individual segments are being carved out and defined such as the connected home and office, IoT retail solutions, connected cars, smart cites, smart grids, and of course, wearable technology, to name a few.

Now wearable tech, which has made quite an impact on the consumer markets, is showing promise for enterprise use. 

6 Secrets to Happier Holidays for Employees

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According to the American Psychological Association’s annual Stress in America survey, the most commonly reported sources of stress include money (71 percent), work (69 percent) and the economy (59 percent). 

With people worrying about holiday spending, scrambling to wrap up year-end work projects and some failing to take vacation for fear of losing their jobs or getting too far behind, the holidays often magnify these statistics. 

But K. Palmer Hartl, author of the Ten Commandments of Management, said there are some things business leaders can do to help their employees get through the holidays without losing their cool.

Jive Selects New President as CEO Retires

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What do you do after you are appointed as president of Jive Software?

“Pack for Disney,” certainly isn’t Elisa Steele’s answer. Instead she’s spending the day talking with investors, discussing the company’s better than expected third-quarter results and getting ready to lead its day-to-day operations come Monday.

There’s nothing but confidence and excitement in her voice. As executive vice president of marketing and products at the social business software provider that Gartner named a Leader in its Workplace Social Software Magic Quadrant earlier this year, Steele has overseen a number of innovations, updates and integrations such as Find Your WorkType,  Jive X (which is used for external collaboration), its integration with cloud-based productivity apps (Office 365 and Google) and more. In less than the year she’s been at Jive, Steele has been promoted twice.

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