Saturday, 22 September 2007

The difference between Web2.0 & Enterprise2.0

While both Web2.0 and Enterprise2.0 use the same tool sets the environments in which they are implemented are very different. As a consequence you need to recognise that Web2.0 and Enterprise2.0 are very different beasts. The main differences can be summarised as:

Web2.0 vs Enterprise2.0
  • User: Millions vs Hundreds - In Web2.0 you only need a small percentage of the total user population to adopt a tool to see the network effect. In Enterprise2.0 you may need the majority of users to become involved to see the network effect.
  • Mind set: Fun vs Work - In your home life you do things for fun but at work do things because we are paid.
  • Organisational structure: Flat vs Hierarchical - Flat organisational structures encourage collaboration while hierarchical ones hinder. See Rob Patterson's 'Social Media and the Organisation' post on the FASTForward Blog for a great discussion on this topic.
  • Attitude: Sharing vs Hoarding - In your home life you share information freely without expectation of recompense while at work all too often people ask 'what is in it for me?'.
  • Skill set: Digitally savvy vs Digitally averse - In Web2.0 the users are all those who are web savvy by their nature in Enterprise2.0 your user base covers the complete spectrum from web guru to technophobe.
  • Visibility: Anonymity vs Recognition - In Web2.0 you are one of the herd, the majority of users can assume that there is anonymity in a crowd. At work people seek recognition for their contribution as career progression can depend on it.
  • Society: Public vs Private - In Web2.0 you are able to control the information you share and are free to create alternative persona's, masks, behind which you can hide. In Enterprise2.0 there is no anonymity, everything you say and do online can be traced back to you.
  • Cultural: Innovative vs Mundane - At home we are free to experiment and try new things. At work we have to use the tools we are given and are often told what to do, both of which stifle innovation.
What does this mean? Well simple put the models that work to drive adoption of Web2.0 may not work for Enterprise2.0. I have seen this recently with our own projects. We have been pushing a bottom-up adoption/implementation model but are now looking to get senior sponsorship to drive adoption to the next level. Sid highlights this nicely in his recent post and Bill Ives reflects that the importance of sponsorship is a classic change management tool over on the FASTForward blog.


Further on up the road said...

I like the list. To me the major one on this that causes the issue is Sharing vs Hoarding. In a information / knowledge led organisation too often knowledge is power. Also people hold onto information for a long time before making it available as they "need to be sure, no really really sure it's correct". In private life we don't we hear something and seek others to validated that news. "Hey I just heard.... is that true?" To do that in corporate world shows you aren't sure of your information. Maybe that's why questioning companies like BBC are leaders in Enterprise 2.0?

Ben Gardner said...

I would agree with you this behavior is at the root of the work life vs private life differences. It would seem that to overcome this issue there needs a significant change in the core culture of many organisations. Not just a 'no blame culture' but also a very mature and informed attitude. We need to be in an environment where we can understand the reliability of a piece of information when making a decision. Unfortunately I suspect that only comes with an open and sharing culture. Slightly catch 22, but still something to aspire to.

Euan Semple said...

Surely what you have described is a comparison between Web 2.0 and Enterprise 1.0?

Stephen said...

I think Euan is right, in principle, but you (Ben) are still probably reflecting a reality that exists in most companies today. In other words, for most, Enterprise 2.0 is still a rather utopian vision. Much work still to do...

Anonymous said...

What is enterprise 2.0? Small definition. And What is web 2.0? Thanks