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Looking for Enterprise 2.0 snake oil


For the next couple of weeks, I’m going to be writing about a snake oil, of the Enterprise 2.0 variety. For this I need all the help I can get: suggestions, tips, insights, case studies.

Here’s the idea: Enterprise 2.0 is a rage. C-suite execs are hearing non-stop that their competitiveness, agility, innovation, and ability to attract top brainpower hinge on their effective adoption of new social tools and practices. We all know the words. (We’ve written many of them ourselves.) Transparency. Break down the silos. Conversations. Market research on Twitter. Wikified research.

This boom is attracting hordes of consultants and software entrepreneurs. Many of them, I’m hearing, are repackaging slogans and buzzwords, and even PowerPoint slides, and selling this intelligence to companies. No doubt some of it works. But it’s a new domain, very short on best practices and metrics. Who’s an expert? Opportunities abound for poseurs and flim flam.

So, what’s going on? Are consultants selling Enterprise 2.0 snake oil? How to separate the legit players from the poseurs? Any case studies of companies taken for a ride? Any common advice that just doesn’t make sense for certain types of companies? Are their bogus metrics? (Twitter followers, perhaps?) Smart ones?

One more question: In Enterprise 2.0, where the community delivers intelligence, answers questions, and solves problems, shouldn’t much of this type of consulting be… free? Isn’t it weirdly old-school to pay thousands of dollars a day for this type of advice?

I could use all the suggestions you have. I’ll be carrying out the research on this blog, and publishing some of what I learn along the way. Thanks.


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