Social media in the workplace – connecting people in the new technological age.
I recently transitioned my team of 4 onto Slack. It was not an easy decision and I weighed the pros and cons of introducing this system to my colleagues. There were a few reasons why I decided to move towards Enterprise Social Media – a lot of it was because of the frustration I felt.
- Closed system of communication
- Email Voice vs. Messaging Voice
- Potential for misinterpretations/misrepresentations
When I was on a team of 2, email was our primary mode of communication. At the time, it was fine but as our team grew, it was difficult to manage the influx of emails. Information was either not being shared, managed, or remembered. It was time to find and use a work collaboration tool. But what to choose from was DAUNTING!
- Google Drive
- Work Front
Having spoken to friends and colleagues about what the best tool to use, I decided to test Slack for our team. But, I was cautioned that for collaboration tools to work, there must be a clear purpose for it. “What do you want the tool to do?” With a clear vision, work collaboration tools can be very helpful. Otherwise, it could be cumbersome for a team that is using the tool for more than what it is intended for.
The words of caution is very important to heed. Work collaboration tools can be helpful if there is a clear purpose for it and everyone is on-board in using it for that purpose. The disadvantage seems to be that people are familiar with tools they use daily – hence emails. And so a new work collaboration tool can be introduced, but if it is not practiced and utilized daily then it could be forgotten. Finding a tool and giving it a purpose seems to be the starting point of how to choose the appropriate one to use for your team.
With more people working from home and teams being diverse, enterprise social media will probably continue to grow.