Fact: SharePoint was once a disruptive technology. For some, it still may be, but for many it's become part of the humdrum information management and social business infrastructure. This very notion of disruption-to-maturity is the basis of R. “Ray” Wang’s SharePoint Saturday presentation entitled: Addressing Key Challenges in Social Business Adoption: Lessons Learned in Putting the Social Business Maturity Framework to Work. Here are the key take-aways.

5 Phases of Social Business Maturity

Case studies abound at Sharepoint Saturday, and regardless of how many workshops and trainings you attend, case studies are the best way to learn about how to use SharePoint. Not only do they provide some innovative, out-of-the-box solutions, they usually address SharePoint from various perspectives.

If you’re in IT you want to know how it make the platform secure, sustainable and safe. If you’re in business you want to know how to make it simple, scalable and sexy.

For those of you have fully integrated SharePoint into your business -- you are your own case study. Think about how you:

  • Discovered
  • Experimented
  • Evangelized
  • Integrated, and
  • Incorporated

...SharePoint as a daily knowledge worker tool.

Those are the 5 phases of social business maturity, and really determine how you handle those or any challenge within the enterprise.

According to Wang, business challenges reflect the phase of social business maturation.

As our world expands, so does the way we work. Social business has made a mobile workforce a reality because it allows us to share anywhere, anytime. But it didn’t get there over night. It also followed a similar path of discovery and experimentation.

5 Simple Rules for Social Business

As you work your way through the phases of social business maturity, it helps to have some ground rules. And Wang provides 5 simple rules that will ensure that your business evolves in the right direction.

  • Trust is the new social currency
  • Social is a cultural shift
  • Building a community goal
  • People to People networking is today’s reality
  • Social business is just good business

The future of business is not necessarily social (though Wang thinks it is). But it will have to be sustainable --- or rather flexible.

If social is indeed a flash in the plan, how will you survive with or without? Or even more pressing – what if social is here to stay but it will look nothing like it does today -- what is your plan?

Because Wang's session today was directed towards the C-suite, the assumption is one of top down leadership. But CMSWire readers know that IT needs to be a part of the dialogue; that IT has much wisdom to share.

And that's one of the beauties of social business: It’s not any one group’s exclusive responsibility. At its heart the challenge is about making it work by developing that new currency -- a culture of trust and collaboration.