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I am interested in exploring how workplaces are actually changing (not the hype). This blog is my place for thinking out loud about what I see happening - or not happening.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Standing On The Corner, Watching All The Trends Go By

Episode One - Man the Barricades!

Gartner's Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies 2007 report highlights Mobile, User Interface and Web 2.0 innovations as hot-to-trot issues for enterprises. Gartner believes these technologies are worth adopting early because of their potentially high impact.

User-generated content is seen as a defining feature of Web 2.0 / Enterprise 2.0, which I think implies social networking. And here we have a problem. Despite the potentially high impact of adopting Gartner's recommended technologies early, there is evidence that social networking sites are seen as the new threat to productivity.

In this article, networking sites are good for business, and social networking sites are bad for business. In this one, (thanks, John) Facebook in particular is very bad. Access to social networking sites must be banned. Boo-hiss.

Andrew McAfee cites a number of reasons to be pessimistic about the adoption of Enterprise 2.0 technologies, one of which is culture. This is 'defined and shaped over time by business leaders'.  He says,

"I predict that the diffusion of these tools is going to sharpen differences among companies as some work to foster the new styles, modes, and practices of collaboration and others work (subtly or overtly) to squelch them".

Well said, Professor McAfee. Self-evident but needs to be repeated often.

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