Enterprise 2.0: Sony, CIA, Pfizer Strategize On Boosting Enterprise 2.0 Adoption - InformationWeek
IoT
IoT
Cloud // Software as a Service
News
6/11/2008
04:49 PM
50%
50%

Enterprise 2.0: Sony, CIA, Pfizer Strategize On Boosting Enterprise 2.0 Adoption

The panel of enterprise 2.0 enthusiasts tried to explain why the nascent technology of wikis, e-mails, blogs, and forums hasn't taken large organizations by storm.

A group of Web 2.0 enthusiasts hailed the embryonic movement in a spirited panel discussion at the Enterprise 2.0 conference Wednesday, struggling to explain why the nascent technology of wikis, e-mails, blogs, and forums hasn't taken large organizations by storm.

Panel moderator and Harvard Business School professor Andrew McAfee sized up the problem by challenging a group of enterprise 2.0 users to explain "why this stuff hasn't taken over."

The panelists, all fervent supporters of the new technology, agreed that adoption of enterprise 2.0 is still in its early stages, but they had different ideas about why many organizations are resistant to it. At the same time, the several hundred people packing the auditorium were evidence of a growing interest in Web 2.0 technologies in the enterprise.

Noting that enterprise 2.0 tools are gaining some momentum, McAfee asked the panelists -- all of whom have successfully launched tools in their respective organizations -- for ideas on how organizations and their management can be moved "over the hump of learning and using" the technology.


Edward Lerner, director of tools and technology at Sony Computer Entertainment America, had a relatively easy time convincing the programmers and technologists at Sony's gaming operation of the value of enterprise 2.0. The gaming staff already knew how important wikis, blogs, e-mail, and forums can be in developing new products.

"The challenge," said Lerner, "is to get legal, finance, and HR departments. Often you'll see one champion in a department [who] brings it to the others. Find the right person and the right project to champion." He noted that game developers usually work together as a team, while lawyers, for instance, don't.

Other panelists had similar stories of pathfinders and missionaries influencing others to join the march to enterprise 2.0.

Don Burke, an official at the Central Intelligence Agency's Intellipedia project, noted the dilemma faced in most organizations -- usually older management people lag in the adoption of high technology, while younger "Gen Y" staff are not only knowledgeable about a new technology tool, but often are expert in the use of many tools. While placing no blame on any generation, Burke pointed out the challenge of the "accelerating change" presented by enterprise 2.0 and its impact on different generations working in an organization.

Simon Revell, manager of enterprise 2.0 technology at Pfizer, indicated that enterprise 2.0 tools can bring sometimes uncomfortable but important truths to top management. He observed that companies often hire expensive outside management consultants to deliver difficult insights that employees are reluctant to mention.

Management understandably can hesitate in adopting enterprise 2.0 tools, said Revell, adding that many managers will embrace the tools over time. "You have to take people on a journey," he said.

Revell cited the case of a security manager at Pfizer who surprised him by not resisting the new tools, and even working to see them adopted "safely" in the company.

Sean Dennehy, another CIA officer, wrapped up the session with the advice: "Start with yourself. Gradually others will follow after they see the success."

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2017 State of IT Report
In today's technology-driven world, "innovation" has become a basic expectation. IT leaders are tasked with making technical magic, improving customer experience, and boosting the bottom line -- yet often without any increase to the IT budget. How are organizations striking the balance between new initiatives and cost control? Download our report to learn about the biggest challenges and how savvy IT executives are overcoming them.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll