If you asked me for one key takeaway from the Enterprise 2.0 Summit that happened this week in Paris, this would probably be it:
“Our understanding of the sophistication of Enterprise 2.0 has grown. There is no one way of doing Enterprise 2.0”
I know what you’re thinking: this quote has in itself more questions and possibilities than answers and certainties. But that’s exactly it! That’s where we – those trying to transform the way our businesses work and connect on the inside and outside – stand: with more experimentation ahead, no best practices (*winks at Luis Suarez*) to tell us the way (only good practices that we could try to replicate in our own organizations and see how things go), and a whole lot to learn and make sense of by discussing together our doubts, concerns, questions and worries. And this is where I was expecting more from the Summit.
I know that expectations are a pain but I had them. When you see renowned experts raising awareness around the need to integrate social software into the flow of work, around the importance of social software to address pain points and impact business performance and around the connection between systems of records and systems of engagement, and when you see teasers such as this one about the connection of content management & social, a very important topic especially in document-centric organizations, you somehow expect to see these topics handled and discussed not in smaller parallel sessions but in the main stage of the Summit.
I put the emphasis on discussing because let’s be honest: if an event such as the Enterprise 2.0 Summit is not the place to have the difficult matters discussed, trying to collectively make sense of them , then where should we do it? I would have liked to see us handle together these issues as we handled the Dundu puppet in the photo.
Please do not think that I undervalue the success stories shared at the Summit, on the contrary! I like to see that more and more organizations (Danone, Alcatel-Lucent, JC Decaux, Saint-Gobain) are embracing a new way of collaborating and connecting their employees. It’s just that in the end I have to seek my own success stories but I could benefit much more from knowing the “dark side” of those that have been embarking on this adventure for some time now. Maybe that’s why the presentation of Alcatel-Lucent by Jerome Colombe resonated so much with me.
Apart from some expectations unmet, Enterprise 2.0 was, as expected, a great opportunity to catch up with good folks such as Samuel Driessen, Cordelia Krooß, Daniel Pankatz, Lee Provoost, Luis Suarez, David Demetrius, Emanuele Quintarelli, Richard Collin and Jenny Ambrozek, and to meet some new cool people such as Rawn Shah, Mark Masterson, Jean-Yes Huwart and many many more. And I had the special privilege of sharing this experience with friend and partner in side projects Ana Neves!
The Enterprise 2.0 crowd is definitely a great one and I just hope we keep meeting and moving the discussion on the future of work & businesses forward!
If you want to check some summaries of the different sessions of the Summit you should read this and this blog. For me it is time to do that myself, go back to my own notes, and have time to reflect on the learnings of the conference.