Elevating Social Media Conversations

by Jay Deragon on 02/14/2013

McKinsey top ten

What article on McKinsey Quarterly was read the most in 2012? It was “Demystifying social media“.  Given McKinsey & Company elitist stature does having their top article about social media be the most visited article in 2012 means anything?

Less than five years ago the word “social media” never appeared in McKinsey Quarterly. Yet in the last few years it seems that the transformational power of social technology has the attention of the world’s most prominent management consulting firm. Subsequently corporate leaders are paying closer attention because they are part of the “McKinsey cult”.

McKinsey tends to hire the smartest people from all the Ivy League schools. Those they hire are “put into the consulting machine”, that requires long hours, non-stop travel and always being the best at what you do. Otherwise your time with McKinsey is short lived. If you last you rise to the top of the company or the top of the companies you serviced.  Who has the highest penetration of C-Suite positions in the Fortune 500? McKinsey & Company.

Elevating Social Media Conversations

In a recent McKinsey Quarterly article they state:  We believe that capitalizing on the transformational power of social media while mitigating its risks calls for a new type of leader. The dynamics of social media amplify the need for qualities that have long been a staple of effective leadership, such as strategic creativity, authentic communication, and the ability to deal with a corporation’s social and political dynamics and to design an agile and responsive organization.

Social media also adds new dimensions to these traits. For example, it requires the ability to create compelling, engaging multimedia content. Leaders need to excel at co-creation and collaboration—the currencies of the social-media world. Executives must understand the nature of different social-media tools and the unruly forces they can unleash.

Equally important, there’s an organizational dimension: leaders must cultivate a new, technologically linked social infrastructure that by design promotes constant interaction across physical and geographical boundaries, as well as self-organized discourse and exchange.

While the majority of conversations about social media have been consumed with “sales, marketing and public relations” the conversations are now elevating to a whole new level of discourse. The new discourse is about how to create more tangible results from all things intangible. Intangible things like value created from the four elements of intangible capital; relationship capital, human capital, structural and strategic capital.

The discourse that is likely to follow represents a new era, call it the Social Era, where market transformation comes from organizations that tap into the transformational power of intangible capital produced from all things social.

Having the #1 read articles in McKinsey Quarterly in 2012 being about social media means everything.

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