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Benefiting from Business Communications

Business communication improvement is typically taken as the improvement in the communication content. We talk about the improvement in the communication systems which can give a sustainable long term advantage to an organization - what works and what doesn't!

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Benefiting from Business Communications

  1. 1. www.kommbox.com Excel Through Business Communication How To Benefit From Using Business Communication?
  2. 2. www.kommbox.com ● Motivation ● Business Communication Roundup ● How To Choose a Tool ● How To Implement ● Anti-patterns Agenda
  3. 3. www.kommbox.com Motivation
  4. 4. www.kommbox.com Communication is Omnipresent ● Consequently, an improvement in communication may affect many areas of your organization positively.
  5. 5. www.kommbox.com Perspective
  6. 6. www.kommbox.com Communication Evolution
  7. 7. www.kommbox.com Email Is Badly Broken Many organizations have people who receive 100+ emails everyday. How much productivity can we expect from them? - Context switching time - Fatigue - Sheer amount of time wasted
  8. 8. www.kommbox.com Communication is Vital Everywhere
  9. 9. www.kommbox.com Expert Advice Experts differ widely … … and often go wrong
  10. 10. www.kommbox.com Jacob Morgan and Wendy Troupe explain: “If you asked ten executives to define Enterprise 2.0 or Social Media or Social Business, you’d probably get ten different answers.” “Right now, we’re in the early stages of this category and people are just not sure about the potential. “ “Social Media and Enterprise 2.0 are still very new and part of an ill-defined space — a space whose internal boundaries remain fuzzy.“
  11. 11. www.kommbox.com Grand Success ● For long proponents put forth great arguments in favor of using ESNs. However the benefits were perceived mostly as intangible.
  12. 12. www.kommbox.com Few Statistics ● However, Andrew Borg published research findings of 629 companies (Nov 2013) which show impressive numbers
  13. 13. www.kommbox.com Grand Failures ● CIOs voted Enterprise Social Tools as the most overhyped technology of the year 2013
  14. 14. www.kommbox.com Grand Failures(Continued)
  15. 15. www.kommbox.com Why Diversity
  16. 16. www.kommbox.com Motivation Of This Talk ● Email is broken. The challenges are real ● Great benefit awaits you - if you manage to dodge failures ● It’s not difficult to achieve it - No rocket science We need a different mindset to deal with it ● Lets cut through the hype and use common-sense - That's what successful companies do
  17. 17. www.kommbox.com Business Communication Round-Up
  18. 18. www.kommbox.com Business Communication Round-Up External World HO Branch 2Branch 1 ● With external world ● Within branches ● Internal to a branch
  19. 19. www.kommbox.com Tools to Fix Email Tools ● Gmail ● Shortmail ● Limiting number of recipients ● Group email ids ● MS Exchange, Mithi, Zimbra What are they?? ● They attempt to fix email system where it appears to be broken ● Sometimes, it's about imposing some rules ● Sometimes, it's about adding intelligence
  20. 20. www.kommbox.com Document Sharing systems Tools ● Dropbox ● Google drive What are they?? ● Ability to share documents with others ● Not all documents have the same access rights ● Documents may be versioned
  21. 21. www.kommbox.com Task Management System Tools ● Asana ● Trello What are they?? ● Focuses on improving the accountability by providing better task management and infrastructure and views ● Central unit is a task, tracked by status, due date
  22. 22. www.kommbox.com Project Management thru Collaboration Tools ● Basecamp ● ActiveCollab What are they?? ● Project Management Systems which helps you to track project progress through collaboration ● Central unit is a project - within which tasks, discussions and schedules are tracked.
  23. 23. www.kommbox.com Knowledge Management Systems What are they?? ● Creates a long term knowledge asset for the organization ● Let employees create knowledge content and classify it based on taxonomies. Emphasize on knowledge curation ● A continuous challenge is converting tacit knowledge into explicit knowledge and encouraging people to share it ● Tools - Varied
  24. 24. www.kommbox.com Customer Relationship Management Tools ● Salesforce ● Bitrix ● Zoho CRM What are they?? ● Catering to communication needs of marketing / sales ● Maintain a database of leads / opportunities at various stages, and communicate with them
  25. 25. www.kommbox.com Customer Support Tools ● osTicket ● Zendesk What are they?? ● Ticketing systems, which allow customers to raise tickets and internal team to access, work on and close those tickets ● Each ticket has a unique id, and status updates are made visible to the customers through emails or portal
  26. 26. www.kommbox.com Enterprise Collaboration Tools ● Confluence ● Mediawiki ● Google docs What are they?? ● Let’s team of employees collaboratively create documentation that is of use to the organization ● Employees are given RD/RW accesses to different parts of the collaborative documentation
  27. 27. www.kommbox.com Enterprise Social Network Tools ● Yammer ● Jive What are they?? ● Attempt to replicate the success of social media within an enterprise ● “Facebook for enterprise” approach
  28. 28. www.kommbox.com Intranets What are they?? ● Internal portal for employees enabling HR and communication ● Typical communications channels are email, chat, PM ● Integration with other enterprise tools
  29. 29. www.kommbox.com Comprehensive Tools What they are? ● A single tool usable across different purposes ● Possible either through extensive configurability or inbuilt flexibility ● The only contenders to take away the catch-all aspect of email Tools ● Sharepoint ● Kommbox
  30. 30. www.kommbox.com Choosing a Tool
  31. 31. www.kommbox.com Understanding Your Needs ● Communication is an important element of organisational culture ● Communication styles, philosophies and expectations vary highly ○ From geography to geography ○ From sector to sector ○ From organization to organization Do you understand what will work / what will not work in your organization?
  32. 32. www.kommbox.com Small is Beautiful ● Choose a tool that is ○ Not hard to configure ○ Can assist in your immediate usage scenario ○ Can grow with you Do not fall into the feature trap. Understand the philosophy of the tool.
  33. 33. www.kommbox.com How Many Tools? Using a single comprehensive tool has benefits vs using multiple special purpose tools ● Cost concerns ● Integration concerns ● Data fragmentation concerns ● User confusion concerns Counter View
  34. 34. www.kommbox.com Implementation
  35. 35. www.kommbox.com Create Consensus ● Organization-wide consensus of how the tool will be used ● Create champions in different departments
  36. 36. www.kommbox.com Top Management Support ● Active Support from Top Management is crucial ● You cannot leave it entirely to the employees. There needs to be a clear mandate about using the tool.
  37. 37. www.kommbox.com Adopt Quickly A low-scale implementation has larger chances of failure. Adopt quickly in the organization Experiment on pilot scale (optional)
  38. 38. www.kommbox.com Monitor and Change Easy to make changes early enough. Change the direction as warranted Champions to monitor the use and benefits
  39. 39. www.kommbox.com Antipatterns
  40. 40. www.kommbox.com The “Feature-heaviness” Antipattern • The CEO wants the organization to be cutting edge (sometimes due to the hype surrounding ESN) and a small group gets the responsibility to choose the enterprise collaboration tool. The group creates a long list of features (wiki for something, discussion forum for something else, task management for yet another thing, etc.), and recommends a tool which is the most feature rich. The company ends up spending high amount of money in the product and expensive consultancy that is needed to configure the product. • Further, the organization finds it tough to get its employees use the tool because of its complexity (see the Confusion anti- pattern), and the implementation fails. Bertrard Duperrin warns organization against taking such feature-centric approach
  41. 41. www.kommbox.com The “Confusion” Antipattern The product features create a confusion in the minds of end users. For example, when a user wants to add a piece of knowledge, she gets confused whether she should create a discussion in the discussion forum or create a wiki page. In the absence of clear guidelines, the users would use their own discretion which will eventually lead to the “conflict” antipattern. The confusion would create a heterogeneous use of the tool and ultimately the exercise becomes fruitless.
  42. 42. www.kommbox.com The “Conflict” Antipattern CEO asks the employees to use a tool and the employees start using it. Many people from different departments try to figure out the tool and make the best use of it for themselves and their departments. When these efforts are not coordinated, expectation mismatch between the departments emerges after a while. If not corrected in time, this results in fragmentation in the way it is used and ultimately the whole purpose of using a common platform is lost.
  43. 43. www.kommbox.com The “Disinterest” Antipattern ● The CEO asks a team to evaluate a product. Unless there is a committed product champion whose KRA aligns with the product use, the product remains unused. The people say they want to evaluate it, but they never find time to do so. Without a commitment from anyone and zero push from top management, the steam runs out. ● Many times it happens because nobody wants to take the initiative. Everyone wants someone else to start, or maybe that the tool would bring about some magical improvements on its own. It doesn’t, and the implementation dies out.
  44. 44. www.kommbox.com The “Overuse” Antipattern With a zeal, a collaboration tool gets adopted. Everyone puts in a lot of updates and there is a lot of interaction. People are happy about the successful implementation and some examples of collaboration happening over the platform are seen as success signs. The conversations on the platform start slipping into a more casual mode, and signal-to-noise ratio starts going down. A realization slowly dawns that people are spending way too much time with the collaboration tool and they get less time for work. By this time, the tool is so much embedded into organization’s work patterns that it could be too late to return.
  45. 45. www.kommbox.com The “Misfit” Antipattern Some times, the failure is attributed to a misfit between the organizational culture and the tool. Many experts profess that the “social” effect needs a near flat structure in an organization, and no topic should be a taboo. Many organizations find it difficult or impractical to make these changes. Many times, the social principles seem to contrast with something that is deeply ingrained into the organizational culture. When misfit occurs, the quality of discussions / updates that happen over the ESN is perceived as low, and they seem to help no one. For some time, companies push the implementation with the hope that something may come out. But eventually, in absence of any good benefits, the implementation dies. The two sides (one promoting change in company culture and the other opposing it) keep debating endlessly.
  46. 46. www.kommbox.com Happy Communicating!
  47. 47. www.kommbox.com Contact Us sales@kommbox.com www.kommbox.com

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