Culture & Competency

"Collaboration" vs "Social Media" = "Internal Collaboration" vs "External Engagement"

Steven shares his analysis of the difference between collaboration and social media:

Here’s the difference. Generally, Social Media is aimed externally, outside the walls of your business, (customers, vendors, competitors) and Collaboration is aimed internally, inside the walls of your business, (employees). Why is one more important than the other?

I would argue that Social Media and Collaboration are equally important. Getting new customers, and keeping current clients will increase profits, just as enhancing productivity and improving internal business processes will increase profits.

So the next time someone comes around to talk about Collaboration it will be in your best interests to give him or her some of your valuable time….

My Comments
1. I see the distinction in the same way. “Social media” is about engaging with people outside the organization – particularly customers.

2. “Social media” provides places where customers go and hang out – the new bazaar – and where firms can choose to engage with them … if they’re listening and paying attention.

3. The challenge comes because you can use technologies like those that power social media – a Twitter-like service such as Yammer or Chatter, or a LinkedIn-like service such as Connections or Jive (over-simplifying here, sorry) – for internal collaboration. Instead of traditional team spaces, work can be coordinated and shared via “social media”-like tools that are used within the enterprise.

4. Are we all confused yet?

3 replies »

  1. Hi Michael, Nice post, have you checked out, it is a interesting new service that is definitely worth a look.