It’s a fascinating and exciting time for business leaders and organizations as we move into 2014 and explore the many ways that social collaboration can help strengthen relationships among team members and increase productivity while focusing on employee engagement and job satisfaction.
The changes in how people work today mean that leaders must evaluate some of their long held assumptions about the relationship between the employer and the employee.
We are at a time when many employees are working virtually, expect to be connected at all times, and anticipate that their performance will be evaluated on results as opposed to face-time in the office. In addition the use of social channels and technologies (both external and internal) means that its not just customers who are voicing their opinions – its also employees.
And that continues to leave some leaders hesitant to fully embrace the power of social technologies even when faced with overwhelming data and research that shows how valuable this can be to meeting business objectives.
Before launching an organizational initiative and an enterprise social network to drive collaboration and internal communication organizational leaders should ask – and answer – two simple questions:
Do you trust your people?
Do you trust them to do the right thing and share the right information? Do you understand that they need to build relationships across the organization and with external resources? While this may have been viewed as “non productive chit chat” in the old-model it is absolutely necessary in today’s connected world.
Do you trust your employees to act professionally and responsibly as they perform their jobs? And If you don’t why are they working for you in the first place?
Do you trust yourself?
Are you fully committed to being open and transparent when you share news or updates? Do you understand that employees want and need to know information to get the job done? Can you commit to sharing news in a timely manner? Are you willing to be “human” – someone who doesn’t always need to hide behind a carefully crafted corporate message but can, instead, have conversations?
Hard questions. Necessary answers.
Let’s keep it real.
This post originally appeared on Bizzuka’s Big Idea blog. Bizzuka provides custom Web site design, internet marketing, and intranet development services for small and medium sized business throughout the United States. In addition, Bizzuka is developing a syndicated messaging system which allows workforce communications to cut through the noise and deliver information effectively and promptly.