Middle management blocking blogs, wikis, syndication

Clint Boulton reports on an Enterprise 2.0 panel that tackled one of the most frustrating barriers to collaboration adoption — middle managers (here). 

Middle management is one of the key obstacles to the adoption of user-generated content tools such as blogs, wikis and RSS feeds in businesses…[per Sean Dennehy from the CIA:] “They’re not onboard yet. They’re not comfortable with the tools. They’re not sure how the tools fit into the existing processes…”

This last point highlights two of the most persistent gaps I’ve seen in executing “2.0” — where do the tools fit in the process and who will bother to figure this out?

Businesses count on middle management to grease the wheels of business processes. If middle management isn’t going to get onboard with using blogs and wikis to disseminate information, how will the rest of the business proceed?  They won’t, or if they do, it will be ad-hoc and perhaps less effective workgroup collaboration.

Exactly…for too long 2.0 evangelists have assumed they can simply bypass the old guard.  They can, but that means the impact of collaboration is diffused or isolated.

Furthermore,  some of these issues are endemic to many industries.  Sadly, I’ve run into this as well even in a technology company; it is amazing how constitutionally resistant many consultants from a technical background are to collaboration.  Becoming middle managers seems to reinforce their bias against cooperation.

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One Response

  1. […] Posted on June 20, 2008 by Paul Ritchie Following up on an earlier post on Web 2.0 blockers (here), I’ll forward some block “busting” suggestions from that Clint Boulton report on […]

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