Yesterday was the second annual Dachis Group Social Business Summit held in Austin, Texas.  The focus of the event was on the opportunities and challenges around social business and what’s actually working today.

The conference was a full of case studies and advice from some of the leading thought leaders and practitioners in the social business field. Topics covered the impact of social on business, design, technology, and marketing.

Since social is all about sharing, here are some of my favorite points from the conference:

Nature Doesn’t do SLA’s: JP Rangaswami, Salesforce.com, @jobsworth

  • Social Business is not new, but now necessary because we have somehow engineered the social out of business
  • Reduce friction in business by allowing mistakes
  • Your own time is your most scarce resource

The Connected Company: David Gray, xPlane, @DaveGray

  • When we design a company and organize it like a machine, the problem is that we assume a stable environment which is not the case
  • Long lived companies are decentralized, have a strong identity, and actively listen (e.g. animals that flock together  learn a lot faster than territory animals)
  • If you want to be proactive to new business opportunities, you need the funds to act

Extreme Sharing:  Phillip Kaplan, Blippy ,@pud

  • People will share if you give them a reason to share

Only An Empowered Employee Can Serve An Empowered Customer:  Josh Bernoff, Forrester , @jbernoff

  • Online social participation continues to grow:
    • In 2007 18% were creators, 48% spectators, 44% untouched by social
    • In 2010, 23% creators, 68% spectators, 19% inactive
  • IT is the “department of no” because they manage risk, not innovation
  • Threat based change is more effective than opportunity based change

Cascading Change: John Hagel, Deloitte, @jhagel

  • The Big Shift: We’re moving from an era of diminishing returns to an era of increasing returns
  • Start on the edge – the core of the businesses has antibodies that are effective at throwing off and resisting change
  • Going slow at the outset may allow you to go faster at the end of the day
  • Everyone is a knowledge worker

The Future of Marketing: Shiv Singh, PepsiCo, @shivsingh

  • You need to know what your consumers are doing in real-time
  • You need to be able to respond in real-time
  • You need to be able to create content in real-time (real-time content studio)
  • Then add real-time co-creation & real-time distribution
  • Insights to execution in mins/seconds – requires a whole new way of thinking

Leadership and Common Purpose in a Socially Calibrated Business: Lee Bryant, Headshift, @leebryant

  • The change we need for social business needs to be deeper, more structural – not lipstick on a pig
  • Don’t limit employee conversations. Real leaders thrive in open culture and feedback
  • Common purpose is often enough to win

Delivering Happiness:  Tony Hsieh, @zappos

  • If you don’t pay attention to your company culture, it may become something you dread
  • The power of WOW!

  • If you get the customer contact right when you have them on the phone, they will tell others
  • People that consider themselves lucky will look for the opportunity
  • Find something you would be happy about doing for the next 10 years – independent of money
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