Yesterday, we posted about how community designers should strive to optimize an enterprise social network to create “social capital”, which results in a vibrant community of both listening and posting. The goal is not to focus on a ratio of posters to listeners or worry about the number of messages; rather, it is to ensure that a community is valuable to all members regardless of their role. With the notion of optimizing the overall value of a community in mind, there are a variety of best practices that community designers can employ to increase the social capital of a network. These will keep the network relevant and useful to every individual without creating the information overload that distracts and deters active usage and listening.… Read more »
As mentioned in previous weeks, Community Design is the practice of creating an enterprise social network within the context of your company’s existing communication and technology infrastructure and culture. It’s part art, part science, and the goal is to successfully launch a social network that provides tremendous value for employees and the organization as a whole. Today, we continue our series on lurking and listening behavior in the enterprise, focusing on the idea of using “social capital” to convert unengaged users and lurkers into more active members of the social network.
“Social capital” is the bridge that closes the gap between inactivity and activity. It can be roughly defined as the value that peoples’ connections and activities bring to both individuals and the community as a whole.… Read more »
In the workplace, every employee has his or her own reasons for watching or speaking in a meeting or on a call. Power dynamics in the room, the number of attendees, a member’s longevity at a company, and their knowledge on a particular topic all play a role in determining whether or not someone speaks up and contributes or simply listens and takes notes. This is normal workplace behavior, so it should come as no surprise that employee behavior in an enterprise social network is not much different. An enterprise social network should be understood as just one piece of a company’s communication and cultural ecosystem rather than a standalone entity that has completely different rules. At its core, the network is a way for people to communicate and get their work done, and as such, it is helpful for community designers to apply a similar set of expectations and rules to it.… Read more »
Preparation is key to any successful project, program or presentation at work – and rolling out an enterprise social network is no different. Today, we will discuss the topic of preparing for multiple types of users when engaging in the community design process. While most people think about “types” of users in the context of their role (a manager, executive or individual contributor, for example) or their function (Human Resources, Finance, Communication), we see those as attributes that are more relevant to specific use cases that must be developed to drive participation. In addition to that critical step, a community designer must prepare for the participation, posting and lurking behavior of four different types of users, as well as the opportunity to alter their behavior and convert them to a different type of user over time.
The traditional view of social networking lurkers is limited to defining their role in the community as a reader, consumer, and non-poster;… Read more »
Last week, we introduced the concept of Community Design, which is the important yet often-overlooked practice of creating an enterprise social network within the context of your company’s existing communication and technology infrastructure and culture. It is the antithesis to the idea, “if you build it, they will come;” Community Design requires thoughtful planning and ongoing optimization of the network to shape it into a useful, usable tool that respects existing patterns and work habits unique to the company and its employees. It’s not easy, but it is well worth the extra time spent up front.
Today, we will begin to focus on the topic of participation and more specifically, lurking in an enterprise social network.… Read more »