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Collaboration is the Foundation of Successful Business Transformation!

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from April 13, 2010

Have you been watching the growing tidal wave of focus on social media and online communities? Think it’s just for teens, techno geeks, and sales sharks? You should take another look because this is an important revolution in relationship building and collaboration that has huge implications for business success.

Social networking tools are everywhere these days – Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, blogs, wikis….. the list seems endless! The bottom line is these new technology tools make it easier than ever for people to connect with others who: share feelings and ideas on certain topics; have common interests and objectives; want to create things with others; etc. While the use of social networking tools has its dark side, the positive results can include the creation of real social change and game changing collaborative innovation.

While the predominant uses of social networking tools and sites seem to be social networking and social media marketing, I believe that there are huge and untapped business applications, beyond the sales and marketing function, for social networking approaches and tools.

In fact, if your organization is actively looking for ways to keep your employees from using Twitter and Facebook at work, I urge you to seize a great opportunity and harness what they naturally want to do – collaborate and co-create – by actively building a business environment that encourages and supports collaboration and provides ALL employees with the tools to do it in a way that has mutual benefits for both the employee and the business. Online business communities are a great way to do this.

The fact is that communication, dialogue, and collaboration are the foundations of strategy execution and business transformation success. This is because nothing happens in any organization without people and to achieve great results, everyone inside (and outside) your organization must be engaged, involved, committed, and connected. Focused communication, meaningful two-way dialogue, and direct collaboration on: strategy formulation (and redesign); what it takes to successfully implement your strategy; solving business issues and challenges; learning from experiences and sharing best practices; and improvement activities; makes strategy execution and mission achievement PERSONAL for everyone involved. And making strategy execution and business success personal is the key to achieving breakthrough performance and sustained success for your organization.

Until now, a few (successful) organizations have found a way to engage, involve, and connect their employees and it has worked for them. Unfortunately, the majority of companies have struggled to do this WELL. Enter social networking tools. Online business communities give savvy organizations a way to achieve the levels of employee, customer, stakeholder, and business partner engagement, involvement, and connection they desire effectively and efficiently.

While there is a whole art and science to successfully implementing social media tools and online communities in organizations, I want you to consider taking a bold step TODAY by focusing on building greater collaboration in your organization. The benefits of doing so will include more focused strategy execution and improved business results for your company.

To find out more about social media tools and best practices in establishing a vibrant online business community, visit this great resource: “http://www.igloosoftware.com/playbook