Conference Notes

Notes on INV311 Understanding Your Organization's Social Business Maturity

David Ransom and Jennifer Okimoto from the IBM Social Business Center of Competence are addressing the topic of social business maturity. Some notes:

1. Will be sharing the story behind developing the social business maturity model. Will be talking about the journey.

2. How the model was created – over the past few years – had a team of people out of Global Business Services and IBM Software Group meeting during their own time to develop the ideas:
– held various interviews with IBM subject matter experts.
– experiences with clients, and IBM’s own transformation journey.
– looking at current IBM offerings and capabilities.
– listening to what’s going on in the world.
– took various models from other places, eg., the Community Maturity Model.

3. What is a maturity model?
– Traditional ones have a very concrete step 1, step 2, and step 3.
– For social businesses, David says that some businesses will embrace higher level constructs, without doing all of the foundational ones.
– David invites feedback / critique.
– The big question – “We’ve done X, Y, and Z. What do we do next?”

4. The model – 7 dimensions – but it doesn’t look like a traditional maturity model:
– culture & operations at the core.
– circling around the core, in a wheel:
– … innovate and co-create
– … engage and deliver
– … anticipate and adapt
– … embrace and manage the risk
– … align and support
– … attract and inspire

5. This model aligns with the Social Business AGENDA, as per Sandy Carter’s work.

6. For each dimension, there are defined capabilities and maturity indicators:
– 22 capabilities
– Over 80 maturity indicators

7. For Culture and Operations – promote and model social behaviors as part of business processes and daily operations. Two capabilities – Behaviors, and Adoption.
– Adoption – how do you adopt social into the way you work? Work practices, ways of working.

7a. Jennifer talked about a recent client. They wanted to know how to get started.
– Client was in the food business. Came to IBM about its “knowledge management” problem.
– Through discussions and analysis with staff, found out that moving from paper-based research notebooks to electronic notebooks, the laptop was in a different place to where they worked. So the research experiments were not being written up with rigor.
– Ran some workshops, using and demo’ing social tools.
– The group loved the way the social tools were being used – for capturing ideas in the flow of the workshop. People started talking about how they could help each other. Got to see what it would be like to work differently.

7b. Maturity indicators:
– (1) Traditional highly controlled, Low tolerance of new work practices.
– (2) Middle management skepticism. Ad hoc social techniques in daily work-practice.
– (3) Prockets of social behavior among leaders. Social in some core business processes. Stakeholders see value in participation.
– (4) Executives lead by example and create trust for open sharing and dialogue. All core functions include aspects of social collaboration.
– (5) Social “just is,” and the way we work.

7c. Leaders can make a big difference. Eg., when Gini started as CEO of IBM, she recorded a video blog and posted it to Connections. Very different to sending out the “Dear IBMers” email.

8. Align & Support – three dimensions: (1) Leadership, (2) Strategy, and (3) Organizational Change.

9. Social is difficult. It requires new muscles to be developed. People have to work a bit harder, and try out new things.

10. Embrace and Manage Risk – three dimensions: (1) legal and regulatory compliance, (2) brand engagement, and (3) governance.

Discussion with People in the Room …

11. Where do you put the social task force in the organization?
– (DR) Depends where the spear head, who is initiating it. Eg., sales and marketing, or IT, or another. Depends on the goals / genesis of the social program.
– (JO) Need an intentional approach. Good to have a virtual team – with the various stakeholders / people who would be mad if they missed out. It’s going to change over time, as greater maturity happens.
– (DR) As maturity becomes higher, it will become more of an enterprise-level discussion.

12. Reinforcement that culture is at the heart of this. Needs the business to come together, in order to get the desired level of adoption.
– Young professionals are often making decisions on where they will work, based on how organizations communicate. Are looking for social tools.

Back to David and Jennifer:

13. Applying the model – a questionnaire / deep dive. Put it through the maturity model. Drives analysis, then a set of recommendations.

14. Have been learning a lot from new entrants into the IBM workforce. Did a social business jam a few years ago.
– One of the results was about age – digital natives vs. digital immigrants.
– Initially didn’t pay a lot of attention to the generation gap.
– BUT – a group of new entrants challenged the results. They (a) often don’t know how to act in a professional environment to drive business results, and (b) often don’t trust the employer to let them do the right thing.

Discussions with People in the Room again …

15. Call out to the importance of role models in different job roles – to model the desired behaviors.
– (JO) Some leaders in IBM have developed the muscles in social, that demonstrate a role model for other leaders at IBM.
– (DR) The other side of it – there are tools that help identify the role models, based on what people actually do. See social analytics tools.
– (JO) Social analytics is a big area, and evolving in parallel with the social business work. The analytical opportunities are huge.

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