Three types of social media inside your organization

When you look at a definition of social media I came across in a research paper that was made for Kennisnet by Mark Schoondorp of Winkwaves. The definition Mark used is “Social Media facilitates organized forms to act together”. I interpret acting together as to add value together in a work setting.  When you think of social media as channels or platforms that can be used to facilitate adding value together, you might come up with the following three types of channels: digital channels, physical channels and organizational channels.

Digital channels are the usual suspect. Tools like twitter, blogs and wikis can be used to add value together at work. These tools get a lot of attention at the moment. But physical channels or platforms can be a great accelerator for adding value. A office design that is inspiring will add value. A layout can enable the right social connections. Even the organization itself can be a channel. Can organizing get-togethers to tell stories or a off-site teambuilding session be social media?

I my opinion these three types of social media need to be aligned for the best results. If you interact with someone on twitter you only enter a new level of trust if you have met offline. Storytelling events in the company restaurant will have a bigger impact if they are continued online. Standalone will work and facilitate your efforts but a new level of performance will more likely be reached when all social media types are aligned.

Schools and the Physical Workplace

Before my holidays I had a session on the new world of learning. During my preparation I spent a lot of time surfing the web, checking out examples on new and innovative school buildings. There is a lot of great stuff out there! Great examples of complete new buildings like a college in Kopenhagen and some great classroomsetups from the US.

In The Netherlands the New World of Work has hit mainstream and a lot of companies are thinking about new ways of working that integrates IT, Buildings and the way work is organized. More and more organizations are grasping the fact that a new way of working has to facilitated in a number of ways and that a integrated approach will ensure a better result in the end. Education has also been looking for new ways of learning stimulated by new legislation. For schools and universities in the Netherlands an institute that is called ‘Kennisnet’ is making a great effort to stimulate the use of innovative technologies.

What struck me is that a great institution like ‘Kennisnet‘ could be of great help to other sectors like healthcare but also general business. But also education could be helped a great deal by a institution that is stimulating the use of innovative building and teaching facilities. There is a lot happening in The Netherlands as well on innovative new building concepts for schools. Examples are the Niekee School in Roemond and ROC Leiden. A institute specialized on innovative school buildings would be able to gather and spread important lessons learned and be a collector of knowledge on this subject!