Collaboration

 

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Firstly, I found that much of the social software we have been learning about over the past weeks are actually great tools for internal collaboration in an organization. This was surprising to me, simply because it came as a “why didn’t I think of that” type of epiphany. Truly, utilizing these tools to assist internal networking and collaboration is a great concept.

One type of social software that I found useful for internal collaboration is the wiki. Wiki’s can be the perfect forum for adding ideas from all people in the workplace. However, this tool doesn’t work in all types of organizations. To be successful, I believe that a wiki would do well in a horizontally structured workplace, where most of the contributors are holding at the same level of expertise. Additionally, these colleagues must have some type of investment in the wiki’s information, or contributing would not be on their lists of things to do. If the contributors are worried about their information being deleted or replaced, I believe that Wikipedia’s discussion tab assists in creating a fair and balanced wiki of information. Lastly, a moderator is certainly necessary – and I believe that if the wiki is that important to a workplace, the organization would pay someone to be in charge of that area. Perhaps even an employee delegated to managing all internal collaborative mediums would be a good idea.

I think my favorite new internal collaborative tool is yammer, which seems to be a type of micro blogging software. Short and succinct posts are perfect for making quick announcements. For instance, say the IT guy is going to be out of the office for a couple of days. Sending a message via yammer for his colleagues would ensure that if a technical issue arises in the office, they know that they would need to wait until he returns in order to fix it. The social networking tool that I thought to be most useful is file sharing. This is extremely valuable in terms of speed and accessibility for an organization wishing to share an integral file, as opposed to say sending an email with the file attached. Additionally, if a potential client should need some information that is on one of the shared company files, since it’s on the internet they can easily access it. This may actually facilitate the progress of making this potential client into an actual client.

In short, social software is a perfect medium to assist in internal collaboration within an organization.

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