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The New Social: Social Business

Imagine the lively exchange of ideas and information you experience with your favorite social media tools as a means of gathering and imparting the kind of business intelligence that makes you a rock star at work.  You have your finger on the pulse of what’s happening inside your company and with your customers.  You know how to instantly access the expertise and information you need.  This is social business, the future of companies. In his recent post On Social Media Becoming Social Business, David Armano describes the shift that social business leaders are engineering and that is moving social media into our business lives.  “The age of social media as something spontaneous that reflects how we behave in the real world … is coming to an end,” he says. “We are entering an age of social business: a purposeful, planned, orchestrated, and integrated way of doing business in a social context which may feel personal to the outside world but combine complexities internally within organizations that will need navigating.”

Social business software leader Jive Software is betting that the term social business will ultimately describe every business and that this will represent a huge improvement in how we work. “There’s a reason that shows like “The Office” or cartoons like “Dilbert” exist,” says Matt Tucker Co-Founder and CTO of Jive Software in sparks. “It’s because work sucks.  Most of us understand that and implicitly understand that we need better tools and new ways to work together.”  Social business software, he believes, will make work fun again because it will be as easy and fun to interact with people in your work life as it is in your personal life.

Social media, in other words, has created new ways of interacting that we want to replicate in our work.  It has set expectations about the speed, relevance and benefits of interacting that we are applying to business as well as to our personal exchanges.  These exchanges will have more purpose and be more professional in a business context, but with the benefits and the experience that social media provides.

As Peter Friedman, Chairman and CEO of LiveWorld says, also in sparks, “Whether it’s a consumer or business [context], the core principles of dialogue and relationships are the same.”  While in a personal context, people want connection and information, [in a business context], “they want relationships, content, and expertise that will help make them successful in their businesses.”

All this points to an evolving relationship with social – one that doesn’t stop at the threshold of personal exchanges but continues right through to include business exchanges as well.  And, just as individuals will see their work lives transformed by the use of social tools, companies will begin to transform their relationships with social too.  Now primarily a listening and communications tool set, social media and social business software will serve up business intelligence on a scale and immediacy unlike anything business has yet to see.

Do you agree that social business is your business future?

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