This is my very first blog post. I have spent the past five weeks trying to think of something profound to say but have come to realize that all the conversations that interest me have actually been going on for some time. That’s the price you pay for getting into the game so late.
After more than thirty years in IT, I am exploring something new, exciting and, on a personal level, very meaningful. When I think of how I got here; all the jobs, all the companies, all the countries, it wouldn’t seem to be much of a stretch to sit down and write a blog post. Yet this is unlike anything I have ever done before. I come from a generation where I have always felt as though I needed permission to speak. From growing up during South Africa’s darkest days in a generation where children were meant to be seen not heard and only speak when spoken to. From a colonial school system where the concepts of hierarchical authority were reinforced every single day, to every company I’ve ever worked at until now, I have always felt the need to seek some level of permission before I could speak. Amazingly, today I can save this post and have it published immediately (well almost immediately) without any corporate filters whatsoever. I had no idea it would feel quite so liberating.
I suspect though, that I may not be alone. There are probably a lot of people in middle and upper management who can relate because they grew up with the same values. Spare a thought for them because I’m not sure that the concepts of social networking come naturally to this generation. I can feel the frustration in the writing of people on the leading edge like David Churbuck who desperately want us to pick up the pace, but, unfortunately, I think that we may be closer to Jeremiah Owyang’s view of social media in the corporation because these attitudes are so deeply ingrained. So even though everyone involved in the social media space recognizes that the movement is irreversible, it will take time, patience and a lot of understanding before Enterprise 2.0 becomes the norm. I am thrilled at the opportunity to come along for the ride at my new job here at Social Media Group and I look forward to finally being part of the “conversation”.