Social Command & Control Will Never Work

by Jay Deragon on 04/11/2012

When you tell people not to do something they ultimate do that which you told them not to. Why?

It’s natural for people to be attracted to new things and want to figure out how they work. It is also natural for people to want and need to communicate.  Tell people not do certain things, like communicate, and they are drawn to do it.  In the industrial era organizations taught people to work on the assembly line and do what they’re told. I don’t know if 44% of organizations know this or not but we are not in the industrial era anymore.

44% of Companies Do Not Allow Employees to Use Social Media At Work

Many companies today are reluctant to let their employees use or access social media at work, according to a study back in September by Bluewolf Consulting. Much of this is due to a lack of social media policies that govern behavior on the social web so it’s not a surprise.

Nonetheless, 48 percent of respondents report that they use online monitoring software to track brand and company related discussions; and 61% list social media strategy as a “high priority”.  Some challenges include ownership of social media as a job function internally as well as proving the value of integrating social technologies.

Here are some key highlights from the study:

  1. 60 % believe that “every business” needs to be social both internal and external
  2. 65% use social to communicate with customers, partners and stakeholders
  3. 52 % are extremely confident in their social media strategies
  4. 48 % of companies surveyed track company or brand related discussions online
  5. 42%  use social media for internal collaboration

Lost In The Wrong Mindset

Studies, such as illustrated above, reveal old thinking in conflict with new realities. Organizations stuck in old mindsets will lose faster than ever before in the new market of transparency and real-time crowd reactions. Whst the old mindset simply does not understand are the following “socialisms”:

  1. You can’t control what you don’t understand.
  2. Expression is the fiber of the human soul. Take it away or try and control and you lose the soul.
  3. Freedom is the new control. Give freedom followed by trust and you get control back in a different way.
  4. Business is only as social as the people in it. Not the other way around.
  5. Social Media strategies are not strategies. Instead social media are the backbone of any strategy but not the strategy.

If you don’t want to be lost then you must find your way out by thinking differently. Thinking the same way will only lead you right back to where you started which is in the wrong place.

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