Ethan McCarty

Digital strategy | Social business | People-centric biznology

What if you were launching “Anonymous Business” instead of Social Business?

Anonymous business anyone?

When it comes to making the enterprise workplace more digital and social, I don’t think we’ve made it clear enough what behaviors are expected around the roll-out of just about any kind of interactions in digital media…we’ve relied too heavily on institutional inertia which has a kind of gravity towards the lowest common denominator in many cases.

What if you were launching something called “Anonymous Business” instead of social business?  What would you do…activate evangelists and coaches and create online tutorials about how to be anonymous and and antisocial while at work?
“Top tips for ignoring your colleagues’ contributions”
“Six easy steps to sending emails from system IDs with incomprehensible instructions”
My point with the silly example is that in absence of definitive behavioral signposts, you have essentially done the alternative.

Meanwhile, there are alternatives…though we haven’t really made it happen yet.  I remember someone telling me about a sign that was up (may still be) in every single Intel meeting room, including the board room, that listed steps for productive meetings (a bit of googling and here’s a link)  Talk about pervasive, contextual cultural signals!  Can you do something like that in the context of your company’s digital toolset? Not just offer how-to instructions, but cultural signposts as well?

We’ve applied some light gameification to some of our how-to guides and enablement materials for the adoption of social business tools and platforms.  It’s not much a cultural signpost yet, but I think there’s potential.

Does anyone have examples of behavioral signposts in the context of digital systems?

One response to “What if you were launching “Anonymous Business” instead of Social Business?

  1. James_Mathewson (@James_Mathewson) November 1, 2012 at 2:37 pm

    I would love to see some guidance for the teams discouraging publishing anonymous content on our owned properties. What if most of our content had a byline, with contextual cues about the author? How much easier would it be for our audience to identify with our brand, connect with our experts, and share our content outside of our owned property?

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