Changes & Challenges

Challenges – the unique opportunity to see if we’re good enough.  It lives within us all, and the organizations we work with as well.  Do we really have what it takes?  Can we really meet the expectations that are set without our control?  Can we let go of control and still be able to survive?

So it is with social media in business.  Taking the concepts of transparency and community behind the firewall brings numerous challenges and requires many changes in a company’s culture.  If that culture is too ridgid, the change is met with skepticism and sometimes fear.  The fear comes from losing control, or from having to learn yet another set of skills that leave you further behind that your contemporaries.

Whatever the case, the challenges of organizations taking up social media can easily derail many attempts that were designed to enhance the company’s ability to move forward.  Its the opportunity for individuals within the organization to help lead, help educate, and help demonstrate how things can be done.  The question becomes how to educate and train people on these new methods, along with selecting the proper solution for the business need at hand.

Oftentimes, the social media “expert” you hire has a direct impact on the success – many times because of the focus on the tool rather than solving the need.  You see, social media is no different than anything else.  It’s a set of ideas or concepts.  It consists of a number of possible technologies.  To be successful, you need to understand the requirements (needs) of the business before selecting the right tool.

You wouldn’t use a Standard blade screwdriver to tighten a Phillips screw, so why would you select the wrong tool in social media?

I think the confusion come from the number of tools, and the fact that nearly all of them overlap in one or more area.  This is where the knowledge of the social media professional needs to be leveraged.  The person who helps coach you through the identification of needs and selection of tools will need to have worked with them in multiple ways so they understand what would work best in your application.

Identify the challenges of your company and the changes needed to move forward and you’re on your way to providing what your company needs to remain competitive as the world changes around us.

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