The London Social Business Summit was blessed by beautiful sunshine, giving the rooftop venue at the Imagination Gallery a lovely atmosphere for a day of fascinating talks.
Dachis Group Founder, Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer, Jeff Dachis, kicked off with a typically humble introduction and then we went straight into two heavy-weight thinkers to frame the day. JP Rangaswami, Salesforce.com Chief Scientist, launched into one of his trademark thought-inspiring talks about natural patterns of life and work, and how we are learning to cope with increasing pace of change in work, life, technology, and society. Following on perfectly, Author of The Power of Pull, John Hagel, put these trends into a macro-economic and business context, and made some great observations about how this helps us think about change.
IBM Executive Collaboration Evangelist, Stuart McRae, gave us a useful and practical insight into IBM’s experience with large-scale real-time collaboration, and our own diagram wizard Dion Hinchcliffe, Dachis Group Senior Vice President, presented a wide-ranging state-of-play for Social Business, highlighting current and future trends.
Michael Gold, Jazz Impact Founder and President, gave us a chance to get up and move our bodies, bringing to life earlier themes of improvisation and discovery through Jazz music, and this worked surprisingly well, enlivening the middle of the day.
Afterwards, Dachis Group | Archrival Managing Director, Charles Hull, gave us an insight into the role of social media in youth marketing, and Ming Kwan, Global Digital Marketing Manager from Nokia, talked about the Share to Connect programme inside the firm, which is part of a series of initiatives designed to connect the company better and derive actionable insights from social media monitoring. She also showcased some of our work at Headshift | Dachis Group on the Socializer project.
XPLANE | Dachis Group Founder, Dave Gray, then took us back up to look at the bigger picture of how Social Business design is trying to create The Connected Company, illustrated with his own excellent sketches. I then closed out the day with a talk about the increasing role that Social Business Intelligence and analytics are playing in building out Dave’s vision of a connected company.
If the level of conversation and engagement over the ensuing cocktails is anything to go by, it seems the day was a real success and, more importantly, provided an opportunity for over 120 of our respected peers and colleagues to share their thinking on the current state of Social Business practice.
The final Summit in our global series, convened in Singapore, was also our first in the Asian region. Notwithstanding the cultural diversity of the region, the high levels of social media usage in personal computing could not be undervalued when preparing the agenda for the Summit, while engaging business with the range of opportunities that could be afforded by integrating these behaviours.
Our selected venue – the award winning Boathouse (part of the Fullerton group) – was the perfect setting to create an environment that moved away from the traditional conference room and created an atmosphere of participation and conversation. The lunch was sensational, a three course sit-down gourmet delight – not something typically experienced in traditional conferences settings.
Opening the day, Dachis Group Founder, Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer, Jeff Dachis shared his passion for the future of Social Business by contextualising the landscape through a retrospective of the digital era and his journey with Razorfish, to current trends where technology, work, and society overlap – a situation business can no longer escape.
Setting the scene, Jeff introduced the Social Business design framework by highlighting where current opportunities lie and preparing the context and discussions for the following presentations.
Our next regional stopover, was from China, with Sam Fleming from CIC (based in Shanghai) sharing insights on a market that demonstrated the power of many. For those of us who situate our social media experiences in the English language experiences of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and the likes, Sam took us on a deep dive into the lives of Chinese ‘netizens’ and the unique nature of the internet in China. The degree of business intelligence being leveraged by brands demonstrated an undeniable market maturity that we are yet to experience in the western social media world. We also came away with some new terminology: grabbing the sofa (being the first to comment on a blog post), human flesh search engines (when people are used to find answers), and CPR (conversion participation rate).
Keeping the brand experience in the region, Sam was followed by Simone Pregellio from JetStar Asia who openly shared the airlines’ experiences and the implications to their business of integrating social media into their customer experience framework. Simone emphasised an essential ingredient of their approach: social media is about conversations, they were not entering those conversations with the intention to dominate (or use push marketing), they were very conscious of their position as participants in those conversations and the need to build and earn trust as a brand.
Taking a focused look at Facebook campaigns through a marketing lens, Kevin Tate from Dachis Group North America, highlighted that Facebook is a symbiotic relationship between media and experiences, where brands are competing with friends for your attention. The emphasis on understanding what Facebook is good for, and what it’s not good for – supported through case studies – positioned the integration of social media, firmly in the strategic marketing mix for any organisation who believes the effectiveness of a campaign is measured only by the number of fans on their page. Kevin also expanded our vocabulary with “mouse parties” where you throw out some pieces of cheese and wait for the mice to arrive.
In a region where use of social media in their personal lives is some of the highest in the world, where brands can boast hundreds of thousands of Facebook fans, the questions from the audience were distinctly focused on how to leverage their brand through a social advantage.
Post lunch, Social Business within the organisation became the focus for the next set of presentations. Ted Stanton, from IBM, described how IBM has successfully developed collaboration to enhance their internal workforce capabilities. In fact, 90% of their internal communications are via social media platforms. He outlined many of the initiatives that IBM has adopted to become a fully integrated Social Business, including the use of communities, blogging, and the value of the personal profile as a powerful connection across their global business.
Dion Hinchcliffe, from Dachis Group North America, extended the scope from Ted’s IBM example to share other high impact case studies – what Dion refers to as: The Big Shift. Typically, this is where Social Business practices within the organisation have radically reduced the cost of doing business, including the use of mobile internet access occurring at rates five times faster than the uptake of desktop internet use. Dion’s cited case studies reported ROI findings such as: more innovative products and services; more effective marketing and customer care; better access to knowledge; and a lower cost of business. Compelling figures that are difficult to ignore.
Nicholas Gruen, Chairman of Kaggle and Chairman of the Australian Government 2.0 Taskforce, took us on a journey through the data revolution and revealed ways business, government, and the public could leverage the enormous quantities of data distributed through publicly available web-based resources. Nicholas illustrated these concepts with some examples enabled by the Kaggle data prediction platform, where challenges are crowd-sourced and competitions provide incentives for solutions.
Closing the day, a panel with Janelle Amet, IBM, and Alex Ford, Institute of Executive Coaching, shared their approaches to developing creative leadership. Acknowledging that traditional models of leadership development do not enable creative leaders in current, complex environments. Both described their approaches of leveraging social network platforms and creating social learning communities that create dialogues to support cross-cultural diversity (their examples were situated in the ASEAN region). The outcomes from both programs included higher levels of engagement, increased completion rates, greater sense of community between peers, and evidence of refreshed approaches to re-organising into new Social Business ways of approaching work.
Reflecting on the conversations and questions throughout the day, instead of differences, the similarity to topics being raised in our Sydney event were closely aligned.
How can we leverage the value provided by Social Business practices to increase productivity, efficiency, and gain our share of the customer engagement?
How do we turn our customers into advocates? What are the risks of participation? How do we resource our efforts?
What’s the significance of these observations?
There are many, however, the dominant image connects to each business unit, selecting their palette of colours, styling their strategic implementation with their won brush strokes, creating a representation that combines collaborative processes, social intelligence, and engagement – a true masterpiece – and an image of organisations of the future.
For the last two years, the Dachis Group has held a curated series of events around the world on the topic of Social Business, known as the Social Business Summit. We believe that helping organizations explore the relevant issues on this increasingly vital topic will help provide the background and insight to make decisions on acting on Social Business simpler and easier. As I explored recently in our Social Business series for CIOs, while social media is very much a full spectrum, company-wide activity, it will be business leaders that will provide the support to make it happen. So everyone can benefit from the information, we are releasing the 2011 Sydney Social Business Summit videos and presentation slides in their entirety. This opens up the leading-edge knowledge and experience assembled that day in a way that is very “Social Business” in nature.
The first Summit was held on March 2nd in beautiful Sydney, Australia at The Mint on Macquarie Street located downtown. The elegant venue was a great environment for a conference aimed at helping business and technical leaders navigate their way through the latest trends in business, society, and culture. The speakers for Sydney were selected for their industry authority as well as regional experience and background. The Summit was opened by Dachis Group Chief Strategy Officer Peter Kim who provided an insightful introduction to Social Business topics both globally as well as for Australia and surrounding environs. Peter underscored the theme of the day by posing the challenge to the audience, “How do you best organize yourself to support Social Business across your organization?”
The next speaker was Martin Stewart-Weeks of Cisco, who gave both an overview and deep dive of how businesses are getting smarter and more connected using social media. One of my favorite lines from Martin’s presentation was “collaboration is an unnatural activity between non-consenting adults.”
Kevin Tate came next and gave a highly engaging presentation on the world of business-focused Facebook applications, particularly something that’s becoming known increasingly as “large-scale social experiences”. Kevin shared what we’ve learned as the world’s largest Facebook Preferred Developer Consultant, including what works and what doesn’t in achieving business objectives in Facebook, noting that it is not yet ideal for creating a traditional sales funnel or conducting push marketing. As far as Facebook’s strengths, Kevin observing that they are in creating unparalleled awareness, amplification, and participation to be where the 700 million member global social networking platform outperforms when it comes to Social Business. Kevin wrapped up with a key insight that I believe all organizations must absorb, though it will be a challenging lesson for many: “Today, you have to earn your way into your customer’s attention streams.”
After Kevin, IBM’s Josh Scribner provided a useful overview of the workforce engagement aspect of Social Business, sometimes called Enterprise 2.0. Using IBM’s internal experience in becoming a Social Business, Josh explored what IBM has learned as they’ve transformed nearly the entire organization into a Social Business including the importance of community management and making sure they were addressing long standing pain points in the organization. Josh presented some useful data on a Social Business impacts breakdown that listed increased skills, access to experts, and better knowledge sharing as benefits reported by stakeholders in the organization.
As lunch wrapped up, a musical improvisation session was provided that helped attendees get more used to extemporaneous collaboration. Then I gave a detailed overview of what we’re seeing with internal and external Social Business today and what it takes to succeed by exploring the latest success stories. After my presentation, visual business thinker Dave Gray explored his latest ideas around The Connected Company, which takes the viewpoint that businesses can’t be treated as machines, as much as some try to, but treated for what they are: organic entities. Dave’s thinking has been enumerated in detail in The Connected Company and the backstory including his research and citations. As always, Dave is thought provoking and profound in his insights. It will be common, in my opinion, for management theory to look more like Dave’s ideas with innovations like work pods and less about hierarchy, org charts, and out-dated, mechanistic business process “optimization”.
I urge you to set aside a bit of time to absorb the great ideas and lessons learned continued in the videos and slides below. I hope to see you at one of our Summit locations next year, to be announced soon.
You can view the full set of videos and presentations from 2011 Sydney Social Business Summit here:
We at Dachis Group are very pleased to host the Social Business Summit, which is rapidly becoming an annual signal of Spring in the world of Social Business. The Social Business Summits unfold across the world, a movable feast that brings the people who are designing the future of business to share the ideas and experiences that are shaping our picture of the 21st century enterprise.
The premiere Summit in Austin, which I was privileged to present at and attend, was no exception. More than 150 participants came to the W Hotel to find a who’s who of Social Business in attendance. An opening welcome from Dachis Group Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Jeff Dachis, set the tone: connection, conversation, an exchange of ideas. And that’s exactly what happened over the next eight hours and into the night, where conversation continued at the Dachis Group Unofficial Party at Arthouse amidst inflatable art, hula hoops, and superheroes.
I’m happy to say that we are now releasing videos and presentations of the many inspiring talks from that day. I hope you enjoy the talks from luminaries like Salesforce CSO JP Rangaswami, Power of Pull author John Hagel III, Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, and many more.
The future of business is far from clear. There are plenty of risks, but opportunities also abound. So pull up a chair and enjoy the energy, enthusiasm, ideas, and experiences from the 2011 Austin Social Business Summit. I guarantee they will inspire you and help you chart a course for yourself and your business. Enjoy!
And for a recap of the #sbs2011 Austin twitter feed, click here.
The final in the Dachis Group Social Business Summit series, and the first to be held in Asia, was convened in Singapore at the award-winning Boathouse Restaurant on April 6. A full house actively participated in sessions presented by: Jeffrey Dachis, Dachis Group CEO and Founder; Kevin Tate, Dachis Group Vice President Business Development; Dion Hinchcliffe, Dachis Group Senior Vice President and regional speakers Sam Flemming, CIC Shanghai Chairman and Founder; Simone Pregellio, Jetstar Asia Manager Corporate Communications; Nicholas Gruen, Lateral Economics CEO; and Ted Stanton, IBM Worldwide Executive Consultant with Anne Bartlett-Bragg, Headshift | Dachis Group Managing Director Asia Pacific emceeing the day’s activities. The presentations concluded with a panel discussion from Anne Bartlett-Bragg; Janelle Amet, IBM Learning and Development Manager; and Alex Ford, Institute of Executive Coaching Project Manager.
The intimate setting and exceptional catering from the Boathouse positioned the day to be a memorable event. Social Business Summit Singapore was a great first event in the region, and an exciting conclusion to the global Summit series.