This article Facebook for the Enterprise got me thinking about why Facebook is a long way from working within many traditional corporate environments.
- how many people can’t access their outside email accounts from their work PC?
- how many people have cell phone restrictions at work?
- how many people can’t use their Internet access at work to do school work?
- how many people can’t IM at work?
- how many people can’t access streaming video/audio or similar bandwidth hogs?
- how many people can’t download anything without IT intervention?
- how many people are blocked from accessing web sites they need? (this means the company is running some sort of software where you get a “STOP or I’ll report your ass” message followed by your explanation of why you really need to go there followed by a glance around the cubes that surround you where [gasp] you suddenly discover that you are surrounded by ZOMBIES!).
- how many people have their phone records, Internet usage, email, IM reviewed by a department set up for that specific reason?
- how many people aren’t allowed to install software on their own PC?
- how many people can’t use their own (owned)Â computing equipment at work? (laptop, peripheral, etc.)
- how many people can’t publicly publish anything about their company without approval of a corporate communication or legal department?
In the article, Dennis Howlett said,
I am convinced now more than ever that the MySpace and Facebook generation are going to obliterate a lot of what we understand about business today. Much of what my generation of business people understand about business is based on applying command and control hierarchies that folk like my friend Sig Rinde abhor.
Anyone can understand command and control hierarchies if they have experienced it. I don’t think it’s about age but experience. The fact that you’re older doesn’t mean squat. Change is about people not age- 15, 20, 30, 40, 80 whatever.
I tend to get around budgets by doing stuff cheap and under the radar to start with. Helps to be of the â€œdo it now, apologize laterâ€ school of thought.
Hey – here’s what I can do for cheap. Imagine what I can do with some money.
The tactic has worked beautifully so far. I went from a budget of zero 3 years ago to having a budget of hey – whatever you want to spend. Now if they would only include TIME in that budget.
I don’t know how old Wendy is. It doesn’t matter. She hasn’t said here that she’s gone all defiant, rule-breaking crazy at work. I bet it works for Wendy because she’s good at what she does. I suspect she earned the right to make change happen within her organization and it had nothing to do with the generation she was from.
If change is what we strive for, shouldn’t we just earn the right to make change happen? How do you do that?
Perhaps you know of a small group that works together but communicates primarily via email. You know they don’t particularly like this. This is a good group to offer up (not impose) something better on a small-scale. You may even find that people are willing to work outside the restraints of the firewall at home. What if that something better was a Facebook group? Don’t small successes have a way of duplicating themselves in other departments? All you need is a foot in the door.
How have you created change in your organization?