The social web represents people interacting, seeking and finding solutions to problems, information, and sharing in a new organized structure. The fluidity and dynamics of this structure changes all the old rules and paradigms of problem solving. Yet the end solutions remain the same.
Problems Solved Through Interactions
The social web is promoting human interaction at rates of change and rates of interest never before experienced or seen. The word social has come to mean many things but the basic definition are:
- Characterized by, or inclined to living together in communities
- Of or relating to the structure, organization, or functioning of society.
- Something worked out to explain, resolve, or provide a method for dealing with and settling a problem.
Never before has the opportunity for people, communities and organizations been able to leverage technology to interact with others for the purpose of solving problems. The act of working together with others to find solutions to old paradigms of communications and interaction without boundaries and with limitless reach is changing problem solving. This new paradigm of problem solving and finding innovative solutions through social exchanges are creating new value that attracts people and organizations looking for answers.
The social web redefines organizational and institutional methods used previously to manage people and groups as well as customers and suppliers. When a new method or paradigm is introduced, the old methods and mindsets must be thrown out in order for the new method to be truly optimized. Optimization of knowledge comes from the collaboration of many and wisdom can come from the crowds seeking knowledge. Yesterday’s solutions to customer service, product development, human resource management and a host of other traditional organizational processes are being turned upside down and inside out.
For those who are currently using pre-social media management methodologies, in order to adapt and flourish in the new paradigm they must understand the dynamics, the tools, and the methods of allowing people to resurrect old solutions in a new way. Otherwise, any attempts to leverage the new paradigm by forcing it to fit into old methods will create social rejections and the old problems will remain. Further, the results will be worse than previously experienced because people do not want to be tricked into something that is not real, social, and involves them in finding solutions.
Companies must begin to apply new thinking to their existing and future problems before the problems become social nightmares. Past wisdom suggested that given the power to solve any problem people will seek and find the knowledge to do so.
If you do not enable people to interact without fear, boundaries and controls then you simply cannot expect them to solve old problems.