Why is change so difficult? From an administrative
perspective, it can mean giving up control, and letting go (at least that's the
perception). It may also be a recognition of the gap between the philosophical
idea of allowing people to manage their own sites and content, and the reality
that, in general, these unmanaged environments are messy (especially when you
later upgrade or migrate). Collaboration itself can be a difficult concept for
people to embrace. It takes time to incorporate new tools and processes into
your corporate culture, and many of the exciting new features that convinced
your management team to adopt a technology may be counter-intuitive to the way
your business is run.
It's something you need to stop and think about as you
deploy a solution like SharePoint to help your organization centralize its
collaboration activities. SharePoint is a platform -- it can be shaped and
molded. There is no such thing as a homogeneous SharePoint deployment. But while
there are many benefits that the new features and services can provide to your
organization, such as increased innovation and improved process efficiency,
it is important to understand and prepare for the cultural impacts:
do these new features fit into our business focus?
- How it they affect
- What does this change about
our security policies?
- How much visibility /
transparency will I have, or will my manager have?
- How will these features be
don't know your organization, and what degree of change they are ready to
accept, but I can advise you to work closely with your stakeholders to identify
the overall vision and business priorities for your environment. In a recent
CMSWire tweetjam discussing the factors that go into successful deployments of
SharePoint, the consensus was that culture and user experience trumps
technology every time. That means you need to avoid focusing on the technology
behind the change, and make it a discussion with your leadership, your
stakeholders, and your end users.
As you begin to map out your business objectives and prioritize
the workloads that will be the focus of your deployment, plan to involve your
end users in these discussions. Capture their feedback, let them help shape (or
define the limits of) your new system. Provide visibility and regular
communication around your plans, and you will be successful in your new