The journey of Convergence

The puzzle of convergence

Recently, I wrote about email as one of the elements in transforming an organization into a social, collaborative enterprise. A classic example is the role Atos’ zero-email program plays in such an exercise.

While I cited Atos in my post as part of the concluding point I wanted to make that email is (or can be) an enabler for social business – and which must have the “it depends…” filter added – the conclusion isn’t the key point here.

What I think is more significant, and which requires far greater attention, is the journey itself where many elements are in play that require help to ensure the important ones arrive at the right destination.

My favourite metaphor here is a jigsaw puzzle rather than a map as a puzzle represents more of the reality of the chaos theory-like environment that is often typical of organizations especially large monolithic ones.

It’s actually a great snapshot peek at the human condition.

The journey to that destination – the social business transformation I mentioned earlier – isn’t one where all the travellers are on the same path or road at the same time, all arriving at the destination in unity.

Such a scenario can present some discomfort to leaders in organizations where expectations usually require clear predictability of outcomes that suggest lower risk. That’s perfectly fine especially in an age where predictive analytics are not only key but also easily available. As I now work for IBM, I’m beginning to learn quite a bit about Watson Analytics – a very exciting resource that offers the benefits of predictive analytics without the tech complexity.

While the metaphorical travellers I refer to signify elements such as behaviours, culture, leadership, communication and business processes – all of which are immensely important to the outcomes – analytics is perhaps the lubricant that eliminates (or at least reduces) the friction that holds back or diverts some of the travellers.

And speaking of IBM, I was interviewed last week by Harriet Ruff, one of my London colleagues in the global IBM Social Consulting team, about why I joined IBM. I mentioned ‘convergence’ in the context of what a company like IBM itself will enable me to do for clients to whom ‘convergence’ will mean that social business destination. It’s a big topic and the 7-minute conversation only touches the surface. Take a look and see what you think.

Next month, I plan to be sharing some of my knowledge and new-found experiences of analytics and convergence at “How to catch a cloud and pin it down: developments in PR measurement,” a CIPR event I’m participating in on February 11. Why not sign up?

‘Journey’ and ‘convergence’ – most appropriate in the PR context.