Peter Crosby

The 3 things you should do to make your company more innovative.


In the recent blog post for the Harvard Business Review, Tim Kastelle wrote about how companies often incorrectly react to business challenges. In his post, “Is Your Innovation Problem Really a Strategy Problem?” Kastelle argues that the problem companies are trying to solve isn’t always the real problem.

Is a lack of innovation your real problem?

When faced with increasing competition or declining sales, businesses frequently assume that innovation is the solution. So they put more energy and resources towards coming up with lots of new ideas.

Yet, according to Kastelle, most large firms are actually strong at generating ideas. Where companies fall down is in selecting the best ideas and implementing them.

So a company’s declining fortunes may, in fact, point to a larger issue. He suggests that the real problem isn’t too little innovation, but rather, a bad business strategy.

Devising a better business strategy.

To find the best business strategy for a company, Kastelle lays out three key points to consider:

  1. Avoid top-down strategy making. Don’t let one group create the strategy and expect another group to implement it — expand the number of people creating the strategy to avoid execution problems.
  2. Involve more people in strategy development.
  3. (continued…)

tibbr

Enterprise collaboration: you can do better, much better

You hear a lot about enterprise collaboration tools these days, but what does “collaboration” actually mean in an organization? Few would deny that improving collaboration and productivity would be categorically good for business. But it’s precisely because “collaboration” is so hard to measure that it’s difficult to recognize the tools that enable or impede it.

I think we can agree, however, that:

• When you gather in a conference room for an intense brainstorming session, you’re collaborating
• When you start a discussion by sending an email to your team with an Excel file attached, you’re collaborating
• When a colleague accidentally deletes your PowerPoint deck on the shared network drive, you’re… having a late night in the office

In this blog, let’s briefly review the importance of enterprise collaboration and the modern tools that genuinely help you achieve your goals, whether you’re on the IT or business side.

Why efficient collaboration is critical

Let’s take a second to review how most people collaborate around content like documents or presentations.

Here are your local and network drives; this is where your files probably hang out during the work week.

drives

Here is your inbox; this is where you derive the majority of your stress and communicate around shared content. (continued…)

tibbr

Webinar: The Real ROI of Collaboration featuring research from Forrester

To stay competitive in today’s fast-changing markets, enterprises now realize they need better technology to streamline collaboration and innovation. Yet determining the “hard dollar return” on a collaboration platform has been challenging. Until now.

After a thorough, six-month long study, Forrester Consulting has determined the Total Economic Impact (TEI) of deploying a collaboration platform using a very sophisticated methodology.

Webinar: Wednesday, March 26th (VIEW THE RECORDING)

Watch this online webinar featuring Forrester Research, Inc.’s VP/Principal Analyst, Rob Koplowitz, along with the group’s TEI Consultant, Adrienne Breslin.

During the webinar, they’ll be discussing how successful companies are deploying collaboration platforms, as well as covering the results of their in-depth commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of TIBCO Software, including the benefits, costs, flexibility, and risks of a social investment.

Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • Why the business case is important
  • The methodology they used
  • The financial model to do-it-yourself
  • The ROI break-even period

WATCH THE WEBINAR RECORDING NOW »

Get Forrester’s 22-page study, free.

Forrester Report thumbnailJust register and attend the webinar — afterward, we’ll make the full 22-page study available to you as a thank you for attending. If you can’t make the webinar, sign up anyway, and you can still watch the on-demand recording of the webinar. (continued…)

Peter Crosby

The InterPortPolice Webinar “After Show” Recap.

Since it’s pretty commonplace these days to see TV shows about other TV shows (think “Talking Dead,” or “Watch What Happens Live”), we figured we’d do the same kind of thing.

So welcome to the “InterPort Police Webinar After-Show” Show! It’s a brief recap of our recent webinar with Jay Grant, Secretary General and Chief Executive of InterPort Police.

First, let’s introduce the star: InterPortPolice. They’re a 45-year old, global law enforcement association operating in 225 jurisdictions, with officers at airports and seaports all over the world.

During the webinar, Jay talked about the importance of having a collaboration platform in his business after 9/11 intelligence failures forced agencies to rethink inter-agency communications. Jay explained:

Criminals don’t have borders, but we do. We’ve looked at responsible ways of interacting, collaborating, and sharing with our partners around the world.

But, he admitted, finding a solution wasn’t easy. The agency hosted four other portals and platforms to facilitate inter-agency collaboration, but none were successful…until tibbr.

The tibbr platform was our fifth platform, and we’re pretty happy with it.

Why? Jay said tibbr gave his people — 90% of whom work in the field 90% of their day — the right information at the right time. (continued…)

tibbr

Huddle & tibbr – enterprise content just got more social

The old methods of collaboration in the workplace are broken, often times creating more work than necessary.

Huddle and tibbr have teamed up to deliver the easiest, most secure way to access, share, and collaborate on content without having to chase anyone down. Harness all the powers of cloud, social, and mobile and hand them over to your workforce to get everything done faster than you ever thought possible.

Join us for this 60-minute webinar, Huddle and tibbr – enterprise content just got more social.”
When: Dec 4th, 2013 11:00 am PST

Learn about:

  • The challenges of today’s workforce to manage and collaborate on content and drive business projects forward
  • How social interactions, together with content collaboration, improve everyone’s productivity and efficiency
  • How cloud-based content collaboration and an enterprise-grade social network provide you with the security you need
  • See a live demo of the integrated Huddle and tibbr experience through the lens of a real-world use case

Register Here!

(continued…)

Chris Taylor

Tired? Enterprise Social Networking will Wake You Up!

I had the chance to hear Gartner’s Jeffrey Mann at the ITxpo Symposion in Barcelona, Spain today giving a talk, “Creating Your Social and Collaboration Strategy.” Very timely topic as enterprise social is finally a done deal. Consensus has arrived that enterprise social has value and senior leadership is buying into the need to get started now and not later.

This is an important, crossroads moment for enterprise social computing. But we’ve reached the point of agreement without agreeing on ‘why and how’ of implementing social and collaboration platforms. One fork in the road leads to cynicism and the other toward success.

Starting with strategy

Much of what he brought up isn’t new to those who’ve been in technology…that we need purpose, scope, justification, metrics, etc. But what he talked about next is what comes after enterprise social media is up and running. It is the justification few understand and even fewer are working toward. It blows away the thinking of social as a technologically advanced way to collaborate.

Next generation social – metadata

What lurks just around the corner from enterprise social technology is a focus on the metadata that social produces: Where are the groups that are active or inactive? (continued…)

How to Think About Enterprise Social Networking

It’s not a new product or a new app. It’s is a way of thinking about enterprise social networking as a platform for keeping track of your own collections of knowledge, but more importantly, making those collections discoverable, searchable and collaborative.

Here is an example from a past project. Jane (we’ll call her) was following the development and definition of the Basel III reserve requirements. She had set up alerts via Google and was subscribing to relevant feeds to always stay informed of the latest developments. Part of her workflow consisted of filtering the information she received. Perhaps between one and five percent of the alerts pointed to new and relevant information. Her filtering thus increased the relevance of the content. When Jane came across something useful she would print out the article and put it in a binder. Jane often referred to the articles in the binder in the course of her work, and a few colleagues who knew about Jane’s collection would sometimes ask for information related to their work.

With the arrival of an enterprise social network, Jane shifted her workflow from printing and hole punching to storing the articles electronically. Liberating the process from physical constraints had the immediate benefit of speeding up the workflow. (continued…)

Internal Social Collaboration… On Demand

Modern business is predicated on collaboration, but most companies struggle when it comes to creating and managing the technologies, processes, and people that enable the effective exchange of information within a company. According to McKinsey, the disconnect is huge, with close to 80% of executives believing collaboration is critical to growth, but only 25% describe their organization as being effective at collaboration. It’s startling that so few executives are satisfied with their collaboration efforts given that what these executives want is remarkably simple – for employees to be able to collaborate on demand. Imagine if collaboration was as simple as making a phone call where anyone is able to pick up the phone, hear a dial tone, and know that there is a ubiquitous network capable of connecting them with people around the world.

How can companies achieve the promise of collaboration on demand? There are countless tips on improving employee collaboration, but here are three that should be considered the fundamental building blocks of internal collaboration.

First, companies should analyze pre-existing forms of collaboration, no matter how flawed, to learn how employees collaborate currently. Simply talking to employees about the technologies, processes, and people they currently depend upon for collaboration will expose a variety of networks, both formal and informal, that employees already use. (continued…)

Beware the Business Silos! Fun Cartoons, Plus Helpful Solutions

The dreaded intransigence of business silos! Okay, you’ve probably heard enough talk of this business quagmire. So instead of giving another boring explanation of how to break down business silos, let’s first take a look at some cartoons poking fun of the issue.

First off, let’s look at Davin Granroth’s cartoon and article: “How to seek and destroy organizational silos.”

David points out the nasty symptoms to look for when trying to spot an “evil silo”: lack of cooperation; breakdown in communication; and internal competition (employees looking “out for their own interests as opposed to the whole business’s interests”).

Then, we have Global Integration’s cartoon, which provides a representation of silos resulting from dispersed teams:

 

And finally, we have Daniel Vasconcello’s drawing paired with Larry K. Baxter’s article explaining departmental silos: how one “department may focus on itself, develop thick walls, look only up and not sideways, and avoid cooperation or even communication with other departments.”
Now that we’ve gone through that picture-book explanation, what are we really getting at? There are many solutions to breaking down silos, but I might as well talk about one I’m most familiar with: enterprise social networking. I may sound like a young idealist, but I truly believe enterprise social networking breaks down silos, increases innovation and makes work far more efficient and collaborative. (continued…)

How Fortune 100 Companies are Flattening Hierarchies Through Enterprise Social

The 2012 Fortune 100 lists Google as the number one company to work for—quite possibly because of the free food it offers employees—but, what else makes Google so appealing? Chief Culture Officer Stacy Savides Sullivan said Google’s core values from the beginning were to have “a flat organization, a lack of hierarchy, a collaborative environment.”

Flatter organizations—those with fewer levels of management—encourage employees to take initiative without needing approval from multiple managers. “Instead of “shifting the responsibility” up the management ladder, flat structures empower employees to take charge, help make decisions and feel responsible for the company’s success,” said Dana Griffin, from Demand Media. In order for this model to succeed, flat structures requires a fully competent staff with likeminded interest in the success of the company.

Employee retention is among some of the reasons why more businesses are trying to flatten their hierarchical structure. At TUCON, CIO Chris Robinson talked about why KPMG, a global audit and tax firm, wants to make their hierarchy flatter similar to Apple or Facebook’s organizational structures. KPMG experiences nearly 20 percent turnover in its global workforce every year. “A lot of people choose to leave any organization because of silos and hierarchy,” Robinson said. (continued…)