“It’s Not Just About Social Media”–An Introduction to Social Communication

“It’s Not Just About Social Media–An Introduction to Social Communication” is a new presentation that outlines the core of my approach to communication strategy–to focus on the informal social groups and networks (tribes) in organizations and communities, alongside a focus on traditional channels, hierarchies and organization charts.

While social media can make these informal networks and tribes more visible and easier to influence and harness, I see it as a mistake to collapse the underlying theory and mechanics of a social communication strategy with the arrival or use of technology which may or not be acceptable within a given organization.

Indeed, the only software required to run an effective social communication program is an Excel spreadsheet–to identify key members in the community and the formal and informal groups to which they belong.

The only hardware required is a telephone–to allow for ongoing and regular communication with the key informal leaders within your area of responsibility.

Social Communications is grounded in timeless practice: it has a lineage dating back at least to 1840, when Abraham Lincoln articulated his “Lincoln Rules” for running successful political campaigns.

Social Communication approaches work well in internal communication situations–and particularly well in change programs which involve smaller core groups along with an extended network into the organization.

They also can be easily applied in external communication situations where the community of interest is well defined, for instance in a niche market or around regulatory or legislative issues.

The presentation can be found here: http://slidesha.re/cmSQEn.  If you would like to discuss with me, please email me at mklein818@yahoo.com


Introducing Internal Communication 3.0: Workforce Citizenship

The convergence of internal, external and social communication has been discussed a lot lately, but in this piece, “Internal Communication 3.0: Workforce Citizenship”, I’ve laid out a picture of what such a convergence could look like, described the turbulent social-media driven changes driving things in this direction, and identified some of the implications for internal communication and corporate communication as a whole.

At the core of this vision is an idea I’m calling “workforce citizenship”–a kind of engagement that reflects a renewed sense of two-way responsibility between staff and the organizations to which they belong, and by incorporating advocacy as well as productivity as part of that responsibility, consciously builds the workforce into an organization’s communication architecture.

The article was published originally on Ragan.Com, an industry-leading daily news-source dedicated to internal and external communication, and can now be found at Communitelligence at http://bit.ly/dyJ07v.

Towards a Social Communication Model

The idea of a communication model that unifies internal communication, external communication and knowledge management forms the premise of my new post on Communitelligence: “Towards A Social Communication Model”.

While the emergence of social media is important to this premise, the core of the model is that it recognizes the legitimacy and importance of peer opinion and influence as a driver of behavior and performance within organizations.

The article can be found at www.communitelligence.com.

Will Social Media Drive Integrated Internal-External Comms?

In the first-ever “Thought Leaders” post on the site of CIPR Inside–the internal communications community within the UK’s Chartered Institute of Public Relations–I discuss some of the key attributes of social media likely to drive greater integration of internal and external communication in the coming year.

Key drivers I’ve identified include:

* timing–satisfying the desire for instant and efficient communications, and allowing key messages to be distributed with appropriate dispatch

* mapping–helping to identify meaningful internal communities and communities within the market, and within them, the people who influence others

* relevance–allowing employees greater flexibility in subscribing to communications that they wish to receive

* targeting–building on community mapping to provide alternative local sources of news and credibility to relieve pressure on line managers, who while a favored communication channel, are often overburdened and unreliable

The full post can be found at CIPR Inside: http://bit.ly/90Xv8u

Does Intranet Spend Increase=Corporate Embrace of Social Media? Comments on Melcrum Survey

Questioning whether an increase in corporate intranet spend represents an embrace of “social media”–or is even a welcome development–forms the basis of my new post at Communitelligence.

The post responds to a release by Melcrum, the internal comms publishing juggernaut, of a recent members survey covering a variety of social media, intranet, and internal communication issues.

The posting can be found on Communitelligence at http://bit.ly/4JWiRf

CommScrum Rugby-Tackles “Internal Communication”

Challenging the very viability of what’s currently known as “internal communication” was the focus of my recent posting to  CommScrum—a cooperative blog dedicated to “Full Contact Internal Comms.”

The Commscrummers: UK-based Dan Gray and Kevin Keohane, Netherlands-based Lindsay Uittenbogaard, and me, took a whack at the inward-facing focus of internal comms to date. We questioned its viability in the face of the ongoing convergence of communication disciplines and, equally, the emerging importance of employees as an externally-facing communication channel.

Commscrum publishes at least twice monthly—and can be found (with the usual robust set of comments, replies and retorts) at:  http://CommScrum.wordpress.com

H&M Clothes-Shredding Scandal Kicks off New Role on Communitelligence Communications Leadership Team

Calling the recent scandal involving Swedish clothier H&M’s (now-abandoned) practice of shredding wearable clothing a “colllision at the intersection of internal, external and social communication,” I’ve posted my first pieces as the newest member of the Communications Leadership team at Communitelligence–the US-based electronic publishing collective.

The first, found at http://bit.ly/8bkVub, introduces the H&M controversy and its implications. The follow-up addresses H&M’s response to the situation–and the remaining lessons still to be learned by communication practitioners: http://bit.ly/83Kpmz

Joining the Communications Leadership team lines me up with a number of globally known communication leaders, including Carol Goman, Thomas Lee, Liz Guthridge, Sharon Wamble-Lee and Communitelligence founder John Gerstner.

Communitelligence has a global network of members across a wide variety of communication specialties, including internal communication, employee engagement, crisis planning, intranet management, public relations, marketing and branding, and corporate citizenship/CSR.  It can be found at http://www.communitelligence.com.