Archive for June, 2010

Win a free half-day workshop with me!

June 24th, 2010

Even though I’ve moved into a new role at Jive Software, I’m still providing consulting services to a few customers.

If you sign up for the Jive SBS Leadership Roundtable webcast with YUM!, Intel, and Forrester, you could win a half-day workshop with me. I promise it’ll be engaging, useful, and most importantly, actionable.

Here’s the blurb:

One webcast attendee will be selected to win a free half-day strategy workshop with Gia Lyons. Gia recently left Jive Strategy Consulting, where she advised some of Jive’s most successful customers, including CSC and Alcatel-Lucent, to become the Jive Communities Program Manager. But, she continues to provide consulting services to select prospects and customers. She will help apply Jive’s proven methodology and experience from our veteran Strategic Consulting services team — implementing a social strategy is much more than just choosing the right software. Whether it’s developing a business case for your community, mapping out your community’s strategy, or implementing new tactics for growth, Gia will help bring your social business initiative to life.

CSC‘s rate of adoption between their May 18, 2009 full launch date and June 15, 2010 was about 4,000 employees per month, out of approximately 95,000 employees. Claire Flanagan (@cflanagan), Director Enterprise Social Collaboration at CSC, shared in June that C3, CSC’s employee community powered by Jive SBS, was at 50,000 active users. Read how CSC implemented the plan they developed based on their Jive Strategy Consulting session.

Alcatel-Lucent‘s rate of adoption since their mid-April 2010 full launch of Engage, powered by Jive SBS, is at around 5,000 employees per month, according to Greg Lowe (@Greg2dot0), Social Media Strategist at Alcatel-Lucent.

I’ve also worked with several national and global health care organizations, as well as clients in retail, manufacturing, and consumer goods, for both employee and customer-facing communities.

Here are a couple of topics we cover in our sessions:

What’s with all this Chatter business?

June 21st, 2010

I’m confused.

I just returned from an excellent Enterprise 2.0 Conference in Boston, where I got the chance to hear several Jive customers (and non-customers) share their experiences, insight, and points of view on stages, in pubs, and on a boat. There wasn’t so much as a peep about’s impending announcement of Chatter. SF wasn’t even at the conference, as far as I could tell. (Jive, Microsoft, IBM, SocialText and other major SBS players were, however.)

Enterprise 2.0 folks seem to be ignoring’s entry into the social business software space. Is it because many are already down the road with a chosen solution, or have a couple in their sights and are currently deciding which to select? I mean, who’s still waiting around for their vertical vendors to bolt social on?

I talked to a few folks about this, who I cannot quote directly due to legal reasons, and here are three points of view that pretty much sum it up.’s bolted-on social features aren’t designed for enterprise-wide networking, innovation, or collaboration.

This gentleman explained how he’s been in IT for 22 years, most of them spent at his global company of 400,000+ employees. He said that, with all of his vertical app vendors – CRM, HRIS, ERP, etc. – adding social features to their toolset, he’d still be faced with the task of stitching them all together before they could “get enough traction with employees across the globe to reach a tipping point. It wouldn’t be of any value otherwise.” That’s why he’s looking at a few of the major SBS players mentioned above, instead.

And, since employees have been used to going into those vertical apps for specific tasks all these years, it would be a farce to think that folks could suddenly shift mental gears from, “I go into CRM to record sales data for sales management tracking and reports” to, “I go into CRM to find experts, collaborate, and innovate the way I work.” And really, even if a mental shift happened, it would only be for those who already use the damn thing. Where’s R&D? Where’s Engineering? Where’s Legal? HR? Professional Services? They’re not in a CRM app.

York Baur, chief marketing officer with the TAS Group, seems to agree.

“What Salesforce is trying to do is encourage conversation among salespeople, whereas what Jive is trying to do is broader,” Baur explained. Specifically, Jive aims “to allow any employee to get filtered information — to let the cream rise out of all this vast amount of communication that takes place.” is also skewed toward small to mid-sized companies, whereas Jive is oriented to larger ones, Baur noted.

~ Social Net Aggregator Pushes Jive Talking in the Enterprise

Chatter is too late to the game.

I asked another gentleman, who’ll be deciding between Jive and a worthy competitor in a few weeks for eventual deployment to about 130,000 world-wide employees, about his take on Chatter. He simply said,

It’s not my fault they’re late to the party. I’m not deploying 1.0 of anything, and I don’t have time to wait for them to mature.


We’ve already got an enterprise-wide social business platform that does what Chatter looks like it will do.

Another gentleman I spoke with works in a regulated industry, in a company of about 45,000 employees, and has full deployments of Jive and SharePoint, and are in the process of deploying Salesforce now. He said that many have asked him about Chatter, saying,

“Can we do what Chatter does in [company branded Jive software platform]?” He tells them, “Yes.” They shrug and return to their social business as usual.

The analysts have related opinions.

Jeremiah Owyang and R. “Ray” Wang of Altimeter group said way back in November, in response to’s social web product announcements  (which I think applies to Chatter as well):

Technology is only 20% of any enterprise change, the other 80% is culture, process, roles, and strategy change –key requirements that Salesforce is not equipped to provide.

~ Salesforce Pushes Social CRM Technology –But Don’t Expect Companies To Be Successful With Tools Alone

Since I’ve spent the last 18 months neck-deep in Jive customers’ cultures, processes, roles, and strategy change activities, I can tell you that it’s not a trivial 80%. (Related: See A Peek into EMC’s Social Business Journey by Jamie Pappas, Social Media Strategist at EMC, for a taste of what it takes to change an enterprise.)

Finally, I pinged Mike Gotta, a principal analyst at Gartner with more than 20 years’ experience in this space. He said,

[Chatter] will be good for SalesForce faithful. They think SF discovered fire. Am I missing something?

Nope. Not that I can see.