10 Easy Steps to Social Business – Step 7: Communicate the Plan

November 25, 2012

by — Posted in 10 Easy Steps to Becoming a Social Business, Menu 2

In step 7 of the 10 Easy Steps to Social Business we focus on how to get other people to take up your plan. So far you have been in control of the action but now that you have a thriving social intranet in place you need to package up the goodness so that others can get started. So, how do you do it?

There are no hard and fast rules for packaging your Social Intranet Starter Kit, but here are some thoughts for what you might want to include:

  1. Statement of the vision of the social intranet.
  2. Evidence of the buy-in of the organisation’s executives.
  3. A brief history of how you have arrived at this point.
  4. Documentation around what has worked well so far.
  5. An action plan for the new team.

It’s that last point, the Action Plan, where I think we need to spend most of our time on this occasion.

The Social Intranet Action Plan

The easiest way I have found to do this is via a slide deck but if you’ve got more resources to hand and are more photogenic than I am you might consider using a video. Doing so will have a much greater impact for your end users.

Remember at the start of the 10 Easy Steps we focused on Socialising your Business Processes. This is where I would start again in your Action Plan. Ask your team to consider the business processes they are involved in and to rank them as candidates for socialising.

Give some template projects which they might wish to consider, for example:

  1. The monthly communications plan the department issues;
  2. The onboarding process for new members of staff;
  3. Managing meetings or other processes more effectively.

In the table below I have set out a template you might care to use or modify which would help you define the steps you’d recommend your new users to follow in your system. Remember: you’re not giving them the tool to define what their, say, onboarding process should be. You’re giving them the methodology to invent their own approach.

Give them a draft project plan, culled from your own plan, which sets out the logical steps you would take to develop the solution for the users.

Try to use pictures and diagrams to illustrate your points. If you can create your own posters, handouts, menu cards or whatever is suitable for your organization. Have a look around the internet for some ideas. Feel free to use the infographics I have used as inspiration for yours.

You need to offer support for your teams to get up and running. Naturally I’d suggest you have a community set up which anyone can join where they can get direct advice from you on difficulties they’re facing or for advice. Over time this will become an extremely valuable resource for getting started.

Get feedback on your Pack. Adapt it and refine it. Publicize those that are using it and the results they are getting. You can be sure that there will be a line of areas of your business wanting to take part when they hear of their colleagues’ success.Manage your Community of Community Managers

Through producing this kind of material you are equipping your own internal evangelists with the kind of material they need to take your campaign to the masses. You need to be the good General by encouraging, motivating and guiding the efforts. If you get feedback that something is not working – change it. If you are getting feedback that something worked well – make sure everyone knows it.

Fundamentally the steps you took in the Steps 1-6 of this process were all leading up to this point. The lessons you learned about how your organization responds to social collaboration and the strategies you took to meet those requirements are now ready to be put in the hands of others.

Good luck

The 10 Steps to Social Business is a concept developed by IBM. This article was written by me, Alan Hamilton, with the permission of IBM.

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