Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ category

Innovation: Make it bigger. Make it badder. Make it awesome!

July 12th, 2011

Originally posted on Jive Talks…

(Attribution to Duff Goldman from Food Network’s Ace of Cakes for using his trademark slogan in our title. Thanks, Duff!)

What does it take to come up with a good idea? Sometimes, all you need is a good night’s sleep and time to think. But for companies who live or die based on their ability to innovate, it takes much more, and on a grander scale.

Using Social Business Software, some of Jive’s customers have figured out how to scale their innovative efforts beyond traditional R&D teams, knowledge management systems, and customer focus groups.

They’ve recognized that:

– Innovation can happen anywhere, by anyone, not just in R&D;

– Innovative conversations get stuck in people’s Sent Mail folder, lost to the ether after hanging up the phone, or never written down after a meeting; and

– People sometimes don’t know what they know until someone asks them the right question (or, to quote one of my KM friends, “It’s about the interaction, stupid.”)


Companies using Social Business Software are able to cast a wider net for innovative ideas, not only among employees, but also with partners, customers, industry thought leaders, and more.

Take, for example, what Joe Bush from Cerner, a healthcare innovator, says:

A majority of our members, clinicians and IT staffers, simply want a  valuable way to connect, learn, and share with others like them.  The ER  physician in Seattle wants to know how he can decrease wait times for his patients through advanced queuing.  An ER physician in Tampa has done just that.  uCern [powered by Jive] helps establish that relationship as well as provide a community where that process can be shared with the physician in Seattle, as well as with thousands of other physicians in uCern.  uCern is not only Jive SBS technology, it is a highly connected web of  interactions across Cerner, our clients, and the complex healthcare environment, with information and relationships at the core.

How is your organization using Social Business Software to amplify innovation?

Why SBS systems and intranets are(n’t) merging (yet)

May 12th, 2010

John Tropea recently commented,

Anyway, I always wonder why platforms like SBS are not the Intranet itself eg. Thoughtfarmer.

I have several clients who, in fact, are using Jive SBS as their intranet. Usually, they see SBS as the chance to collapse multiple intranets obtained through acquisitions into a single piazza, or to breathe new life into their traditional intranet, or to make content publishing much easier.

The issue, though, is when Corporate Communications needs to ensure communication delivery to individuals based on their employee type: managers see ABCD, contractors see A, European employees see BC, etc. (Actually, this is also true for more stuff, beyond the Corporate Voice stuff). They want to lock down a portion of the user’s landing page. This is something traditional, portal-based solutions from Days of Yore offer, but typically requires customization in SBS systems, where users have complete control over their landing page.

Another item we run into is that traditional intranets might include application integration in the form of, “hey, let’s put the top 3-5 actions a user is allowed to perform in our ERP/CRM/HRIS/whatever system (e.g., “Modify Customer Record”) and data relevant to the user based on their permissions in that system into a portlet/gadget/web part/widget, so that users can use them directly from the internet, but they can click through to dive into the full application if they need to.”

SBS systems approach this integration from a different angle, namely, “let’s bring all the activity going on in those applications (e.g., “John Tropea modified the Acme, Inc. customer record”) into the stream of activities scrolling by the user’s eyeballs in SBS. They can click through if they want to.” The integration is starting to go the other way, too. When you pop open your CRM/HRIS/ERP/Whatever app, you could start seeing messages such as, “John Tropea linked to this record in a discussion.”

So, what I think will really make SBS systems the eventual de facto intranet, beyond the social business interaction aspect, is when they can deliver directed content based on member type, make it stupid-simple to collect activity streams from other apps based on the user’s permissions and interests, and make it stupid-simple to surface actions and data from other apps, all in a way that makes sense to the user.

That last phrase is the kicker.

Update May 21

I’ve just learned that some have read this post and misinterpreted it to mean that Jive SBS cannot serve the needs of those who do, in fact, need to ensure corporate communications delivery to specific member types, or need to integrate with different enterprise applications. My opinions address the out-of-box functionality of the general category of applications called “social business software”, but I should have known better. Who uses anything out of the box these days (unless it’s an Apple mobile device)?

Rest assured, we have customers who have done both, and more, because Jive is probably one of the most extensible platforms out there.

Jive’s ease of use, platform flexibility, and customer orientation made its focused solution the ideal choice for our Ourspace initiative,” said Wolfgang Jastrowski, Swiss Re IT Director. “The extensible nature of the Jive SBS solution gives us ample flexibility as we continue to build out our platform and its capabilities. We’re especially excited about Jive’s new initiative to surface content and activities from almost any content management system (CMS) inside Jive SBS, making it possible to realize even greater business value through the integration of social media collaboration with content.

~ Jive Social Business Software Improves Responsiveness and Productivity at Swiss Re

One of my favorite moments at Lotusphere

January 28th, 2008

It was late Wednesday evening at Lotusphere. I was with my annual roomie, Carla Gillespie, and some other friends in a suite, just hangin’ out, drinking some much needed water. I can’t remember what we were talking about, but at one point, the conversation went like this:

Me: “You know, sometimes I’m not, uh, uh… what’s the word, uh..”

Carla: “Articulate?”

Anyone who’s ever heard me speak in person will understand this. My brain moves about a million miles faster than my mouth. Actually, so does my typing. This explains why I hate the phone.

My Lotusphere speaking experience

January 21st, 2008

I presented at Lotusphere with one of the Lotus Connections product managers, Ted Stanton, on Sunday. It was a Quickstart, which is code for a firehose of information, including market drivers, demonstration, and best practices for infrastructure deployment and business adoption.

During the second session, I was talking about the need to enable federated repositories in WebSphere Application Server 6.1 before installing Lotus Connections.

Only, I said “federated suppositories.” I have no idea why. It certainly woke up the audience.

And, of course, the entire session is recorded, so I’m sure this will come back to haunt me at some point. There goes my political career, eh? (<— Look, Canadian influences are taking over!)

Connections is like the global lunch room. Beehive? Global cocktail hour!

December 19th, 2007

I’ve recently been explaining Lotus Connections as a global lunch room. It’s where you can share the stuff you’d normally share over lunch in the company cafeteria, but through blogs, social bookmarks, community forums (R2), personal file sharing (R2 or Quickr 8.x, not sure, so don’t ask me), etc. instead.

Beehive, an internal IBM Research application that feels like Facebook, is more like a global cocktail hour. It’s where you share information and ideas about work initially, but then you slowly digress into talking about movies that scare the crap out of you and your favorite types of beer.

I had a recent conversation with a pal of mine who explained Beehive this way (and I paraphrase):

You know when you see some little kid in a game arcade playing Skee-Ball for the first time? They see all those tickets spit out, and their eyes just go wide. WOW! Now, you know those tickets aren’t worth much – they’ll maybe get you some plastic trinket or two – but that kid will keep throwing those balls until their arm falls off, just to get more tickets. That’s what Beehive is like.

I’ve given up trying to explain the business value of Beehive (to IT people!), and I’m just having fun in there. The by-product is that my colleagues get to learn way more about me than they’ll ever learn in the lunch room.

And maybe knowing more about me is the best way to form an even deeper trusted working relationship with me. Benefit? I’ll help you before I help the other guy or girl.


“Global lunch room” engenders trust between colleagues.

“Global cocktail hour” engenders friendships in the workplace.

Or maybe I’ve just had too much honey to drink.