What’s Going On

No theorizing or exhorting with this post. I just want to highlight a couple excellent resources for people and companies interested in Enterprise 2.0 and the new tools and modes of collaboration, innovation, knowledge sharing, expertise location, and collective intelligence.

The Enterprise 2.0 Boston conference runs from June 14-17 this year (the San Francisco equivalent takes place in November) at the Westin Boston Waterfront. I’ve been involved with this event since its birth, and cannot recommend it highly enough for anyone interested in the topic. It’s where I learn the most every year about how companies are putting emergent social software platforms to use and what they’re learning as they do so. The conference is growing and becoming more vibrant every year, and is valuable for organizations at any stage of interest or deployment.

I’ll be giving a keynote presentation and talking onstage with Gentry Underwood of IDEO about the intersection of Enterprise 2.0 and innovation. Disclosure: the conference is buying a bunch of my books and giving them away to attendees. I’d be flattered to sign a copy for you, a colleague, or a boss who needs to be persuaded about the business value of E2.0.

If you’re a builder of Enterprise 2.0 software, you’ll likely be interested in the conference’s Launch Pad, a competition for E2.0 developers. The Launch Pad proceeds in best 2.0 fashion: entries are collected via tweets that use the #e2conf-lp hashtag ; the deadline for these is April 19. Judges select 8 quarter-finalists, who then upload 3-minute videos to YouTube. The whole world votes on these, and the four semifinalists present live at the conference. More explanation is here, and rules are here; entrants do not need to be exhibitors at the conference.

If you’re working within a medium-sized to large organization to make Enterprise 2.0 work, you really should join the 2.0 Adoption Council, the brainchild of my friend and technology maven Susan Scrupski. Susan set the Council up online and calls herself its ‘chief concierge.’ I asked her to describe it; here’s what she said:

Because Enterprise 2.0 is still in its infancy and early adoption phase (this is hard to recognize in the bubble), customers need to talk to each other in order to accelerate the pace of change.  No one company, consultant, academic, blogger, researcher has all the right answers.  It will be trial and error for a long while.
Customers most respect other customers’ opinions (lots of data to support this).
The Council launched in the summer after the E20 conference in Boston.  Today, we have 169 marquis brands that are in some phase of 2.0 adoption.
The Council by definition is a 2.0 organization.  It is run on two socio-collaborative platforms: Jive and Yammer.  Both are supported on mobile devices, as well. It’s a virtual resource available to any individual in any time zone.  It is a flat organization where contributions by every title, paygrade, background have an equal voice.  Teams are self-organizing in the council, combining IT, HR, Marketing, Innovation/R&D, and Knowledge management experts to hash out strategic issues.
The collective intelligence shared within the Council has saved members hundreds of thousands of dollars and countless man-hours/man-months of wheel inventing.
Quotes from Council members (today on Yammer):
“Although I have a tactical team to help me implement E2.0, I consider the Council as my strategic team.  With all the information we share freely, the support and conversation is better than many on-site teams I have been on.  Few outside this group understand the challenges we face. To be able to share and come up with many perspectives is the working epitomy of E2.0.”
“It is simply not possible to find such a high concentration of like-minded practitioners within most companies.  The very fact that Council members self-select by applying to join says a lot about their level of understanding and willingness to learn from other domain experts.”

The Council is open to internal E2.0 evangelists only —   no vendors —  and is currently free to join. Learn more about it and request membership here. As with the E2.0 Conference, I can’t recommend the 2.0 Adoption Council highly enough; it’s a hugely valuable community of practice (I have no financial interest in it).

In the coming months I’ll be working with Susan and Council members to write a series of case studies that capture the current state of the art with Enterprise 2.0: how companies are using the new tools and approaches, what results they’re achieving, and what they’re learning as they go. Stay tuned for more information about these.

And finally, huge congratulations are due to E2.0 pioneer Dion Hinchcliffe: his Hinchcliffe and Company has been acquired by The Dachis Group to further bolster its Social Business Design practice. Dion was one of the first people I met when I got interested in Enterprise 2.0, and has for years been a tireless writer, teacher, advisor and connector in the space. I’m thrilled for him and for Dachis, and wish them great success…

What other interesting Enterprise 2.0-related recent news is there? And what resources and events do you find most valuable in understanding the new technology-enabled world of work? Leave a comment, please, and let us know.