What conflict do you cause when you tell someone to “shut up !”. If you don’t know try telling your spouse, children, friends or coworkers to shut up and you find the answer to this question.
Restricting Communications Means What?
Andrea DiMaio writes A survey of 1,400 CIOs in the US published by Robert Half Technology (see press release) shows some interesting – and indeed worrying – results about the number of enterprises that prevent their employees from accessing social media sites from the workplace.
Here are the results:
CIOs were asked, “Which of the following most closely describes your company’s policy on visiting social networking sites, such as Facebook, MySpace and Twitter, while at work?” Their responses:
Prohibited completely 54%
Permitted for business purposes only 19%
Permitted for limited personal use 16%
Permitted for any type of personal use 10%
But isn’t this a recipe for failure? Haven’t corporations and government agencies understood that social networks are a bottom-up. peer-to-peer, grass-root phenomenon that cannot be planned or engineered by a formal organization? How long will it take before they understand that only blurring personal and work boundaries will unleash the value they are desperately seeking (and yet denying) in social media?
Staying in denial and closing the fences is not an option. Whether to attract the best employees, or to make them more effective and productive, whether to stay closer to their customers and suppliers, whether to sense emerging needs and trends, enterprises in all sectors will have to let their staff join social media. Of course this won’t be a free ticket to waste time on browsing family pictures or arranging dinners with friends. But the boundaries between personal and professional use will blur forever, and the ability to assess, identify and nurture business value from social media will become a critical capability for enterprises (and their managers) in all industry sectors.
You Can’t Restrict Communications
Actually I should say you can but there is a cost associated with restriction. First when you tell anyone they can’t do something that is within the fiber of their human DNA they will find a way around your restriction. Second, saying you can’t use social technology on the job is akin to saying I don’t want you interacting with other employees, customers, prospects and I don’t want you to learn anything new.
After 25 years as a management consultant I am still amazed to find how business think or better said not think.
What say you?