The Future of Enterprise:
Living Social

Living social.

As we established in previous weeks, the world of enterprise is currently undergoing a technological revolution that will transform the way business as we know it, is conducted. This is the eighth of an eight-part blog series examining the changes that will drastically alter the corporate landscape in the next five years.

What’s Changing?

Unless you have been living under a rock, you have likely noticed that social media tools are being embedded into everything. From our spreadsheets to our televisions, this new form of social interaction is ever present and shows no signs of slowing down any time soon. The fact of the matter is that the people want this type of tool at their fingertips. They want to work together, discuss, find experts, get immediate feedback and so on. As a result, smart companies are learning to collaborate more efficiently, connect and interact with ever-expanding communities of customers, suppliers and peers in a social context. This social business concept is in the process of unleashing a new model for operating in an ultra-competitive marketplace by helping to improve productivity and grow profits.

Above and beyond anything else, social business tools allow people to communicate more freely with other employees, suppliers and consumers. Companies can draw on previously untapped capabilities to address existing challenges and explore new opportunities. Doing so enables them to deliver extra value to every aspect of their business from generating innovative product ideas to gaining invaluable market insights directly from their clientele. As a byproduct, they can also incrementally increase profits.

A Day At The Office...

Collaboration isn’t the only avenue being changed significantly by social business tools, however. Every department within your organization is changing and adapting to the capabilities provided by this new type of technology.

But while the potential gains of social media tools are innumerable they also have the potential to damage a company’s reputation if not managed correctly. Gone are the days when angry customers called private customer service lines to file complaints. Today’s complaint department is out there for the entire world to see. Dissatisfied customers now publicly message your company via Twitter and facebook pages and they demand immediate attention and action. And you had better believe that news of serious workplace incidents and happenings are circulating inside and outside your office walls via employee accounts long before you can issue a formal written statement.