The words “social enterprise” or “social business” can mean different things depending on your industry. However, whether you’re using social technologies to communicate with your employees in an effort to spearhead innovation or you’re a non-profit or start up using social technologies to contribute to the greater good, at the end of the day, using social technologies to share, collaborate and connect with others is changing the way we work.

The Life & Times of Enterprise Social Technologies

This month we've been exploring the social enterprise -- what it means for the future, how it impacts the way we collaborate, and ultimately, its ability to sustain itself long after the hype dies down. 

Last week, Oscar Berg reminded us that though social technologies for the enterprise will change the way we work, it won't happen overnight. Most companies are still in flux when it comes to implementing social intranets or developing governance strategies that oversee internal social networks. For us, who cover the ins and outs of enterprise social business, it can seem that companies are moving at a snail's pace to deploy and manage the technologies that hold the most promise for improving communication, innovation and increasing revenue. In reality, the industry is rapidly growing and early adopters are setting the stage for the next wave of enterprise social converts. 

Every quarterly report or Magic Quadrant tells us more about the benefits and challenges of the social enterprise. From what features are most popular and are likely to result in the most ROI to the team members involved in creating successful project initiatives, the social enterprise is a living, breathing organism evolving before our very eyes. 


More Technology Isn't Always the Answer

However, no matter which platform you've selected or functionality you've identified, social technologies in the enterprise are doomed to fail without the right people, process and strategies in place. It's not the technology, so much as it is the problem you're trying to solve and the people who you're trying to engage. Companies need to stop forcing square pegs into round holes. For the 25% of all companies who have indicated that they have no plans to implement social technologies, perhaps they know something we don't -- that all the social technologies won't make a difference if you don't have the buy-in or the want-to from the masses to make it work.