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Ray Wang Surveys the Evolution of Social Business

R "Ray" Wang, principal analyst and CEO at Constellation Research has been a highly respected analyst of social business in the enterprise and the role of disruptive technologies in business for years. In this interview, Wang surveys the evolution of social business and provides insights on key matters such as the traits of companies with more developed social capabilities; which social uses are growing the fastest; the critical role top leadership including the CMO, CIO, CFO, Chief Product Officers and the Chief Digital Officer; what works best when introducing gamification as incentives, and how social business is changing the future of work.

Wang explains in details the various steps and signposts that a company can look for on its way to becoming a more fully enabled social business, beginning with the first step of experimentation; moving to the next step of applying a social project to different parts of the organization; then looking at funding at the next step; and then figuring out how to organize, analyze and put all of the new information that's being generated into action and in the right context.

When it comes to introducing gamification for employee participation incentives, Wang says that there are levels here too that a company should keep in mind: the first is providing an employee with recognition; the next is special access privileges; and the last is providing the individual with greater impact and influence — the chance to work on a new product or project.

He also identifies a barrier that companies and individuals are facing now in working with social, which is what he calls "social fatigue" — that is, being on too many social networks. The way to get around this, he says, is to get context back into social networks: which ones are being used for what specific reasons.

Finally, Wang discusses the big picture too in how social business is changing how the technology is changing the way we work. It does so by providing employees with a greater voice and impact in their business which companies can use this to spot talent. He also discusses whether or not social business will be a force for humanizing the workforce.

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