There are many reasons why a social collaboration initiative might fail, but by far the most common is that not enough thought has gone into why. Why should we invest in collaboration? Why should I allow - never mind encourage - my team to turn their attention away from doing what I need them to do to learn this new tool? Why should I change the way I do things?
While any business case will expect some sort of business need to be identified, too often in collaboration initiatives the reason is very vague - "we want people to work better together" or "we want to better connect our people". But that still begs the question - why? What can you achieve if your people work better together? What difference will it make if your people are better connected?
It's extremely important as you are preparing for an investment in social collaboration to make sure that you not only take your thought process to that next level, but that you capture and articulate that, not only in your business case, but also in everything you do. It provides a fundamental underpinning for your entire initiative - it will help you convince senior management to invest, it will help you convince people across the organisation that it is worth their while to make this change, and most importantly of all, it will help you to understand what success ultimately looks like. How will we drive efficiencies and save real money through using this tool? What new opportunities could we create through better collaboration across the company? Once you start thinking in this way, it's much easier to identify the key metrics that you need to track to assess your progress. And once you can track your progress, it's much easier to get greater buy-in and commitment from managers.
If you are struggling with where to start, take a look at your organisation's high level business goals. Whether they focus on creating a more streamlined, efficient business, or maintaining a position as an innovator in your respective industry, more likely than not, there's a role that better collaboration can play in helping you achieve those goals. But "better collaboration" alone will not cut it. Focus on why.
You can read more about Building a business case for social collaboration in my recent report, which is free to download until 19th September 2014.#socialcollaboration #social #Collaboration #businesscase #strategy