Online Information 2010: corporate use of social media

Hazel Hall, Phil Bradley, Ulla de Stricker and Bonnie Cheuk explore new approaches to knowledge sharing for organisations

In a session moderated by Hazel Hall, barriers to the adoption of social media were discussed and solutions identified.  Phil Bradley recounted the many barriers he has come across when talking to organisations and the individuals within them about the benefits of web 2.0 tools.   So many of these barriers are based on a lack of understanding and deep rooted fear of ‘losing control'.   Phil's philosophy is quite simple.  The risk is not so much in the use and rollout of these tools as it is in NOT using them.  The danger to these organisations is that conversations are going on elsewhere and that they are not aware of them.   His story about how English Heritage telephoned him within two hours of him publishing a tweet about problems with his membership demonstrates an excellent use of social media.

Ulla de Stricker, a KM consultant, spoke about the nature of corporate memory and knowledge ‘ownership' in organisations.  She spoke about the importance of understanding what type of knowledge culture exists in your organisation.  It is this understanding that enables you to choose the right tool for your colleagues.  By mapping and understanding information practices within your organisation, you can focus on good practice and information ‘role models'.

Bonnie Cheuk spoke about how a recent move into a new role in a new organisation (Citi) made her rethink everything she has thought to be ‘true' about knowledge sharing and social media.  She reminded us all that every organisation has its own culture and its own barriers to new ways of working (for her too, interestingly, she found that the word ‘social' would not work).  Her focus now is on encouraging meaningful listening.