Episode V: Return of the ESN

In which our hero must revive old wisdom to battle empires and where the band of front runners will be supported by fuzzy friends to bring down legacy structures.

Enterprise Social Networking (ESN) tools are a rage these days with the global pandemic of Covid-19 sending all staff to work and collaborate from home. Microsoft, and work place after work place, pushes the Teams platform for collaboration, calls and file sharing. As if the cargo cult ceremonies will actually have an impact – this time around. So the empires and old ways of working remains.

The drive towards a learning organization is not new – it has been around at least 10 years. Remember the battle of Ya.. Yammer vs Jive? We should dig our x-wing into the swamps of ancient wisdom (all from 2012):

And if you want something more recent:

A common misconception is that if a company upgrades its technology, digital transformation is done. The reality, however, is that digital transformation isn’t about software or technology — it’s about organizational adaptability. To keep pace with the change driven by digital transformation, organizations must be agile and adaptable, and organizational culture is crucial to the success of any digital initiative.

Why Culture Change Is Essential for Digital Transformation, 2020

… as always culture eats strategy for breakfast, and the cobbler’s children runs barefooted. … yet.. the Ewoks managed.

The Ewoks manage to overwhelm and completely defeat a technologically superior force simply by using conventional military tactics.

Wired: Ewoks Are the Most Tactically Advanced Fighting Force in Star Wars

So who are our fuzzy friends, that can help? First of all there is the millenium trend/evolution of the digital natives, as collaboration tools becomes more and more prevalent, – companies have to catch up to retain the employees that desire to be in a learning & generative organisation. As well as they have to keep up with providing a culture of WFH and trust.

Secondly the Jedi team that we need are the Community Managers and leaders of Community of Practices like Rosie and Rachel:

They can remind us that for the enterprise collaboration to succeed we need to consider the four types of interactions: the fans, the followers, the fringe and those further away. The fans needs to involve the next levels for the empires and legacy structures to fall.

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