Monthly Archives: July 2010

Social Media and Learning and Development

Geeta Bose of Kern – a learning solutions firm interviewed me recently for the “learning den” for Learning and Development professionals and focused on asking me Is social media hype or reality? and the way it can add to the learning process.

An avid blogger, a twitter-addict, with 1000 friends on Orkut and an enviable fan following on Facebook, Gautam is a social media and network junkie. But when asked how he’d like to categorize himself, Gautam Ghosh says, “my foremost identity is as an HR professional.” Those who know Gautam describe him as the “Face of HR blogging” in India as well as the global community. This young man has successfully connected the dots between HR, learning and social media. He believes that “learning happens by doing and sharing!”

Gautam has rich experience in the corporate world through his journey as an HR professional in organizations like DELL, Deloitte, HP, Satyam, as an independent OD and Training consultant as well as a consultant with 2020 Social. “I see everything kind of fitting into a larger umbrella of saying how do we make a more human organization,” he explains. By ‘human’ he refers to an organization that is open and transparent. Gautam believes that all his L&D work, HR professional work, HR journalist work, and his social media work belongs to the larger umbrella of building an organization that is more open, transparent and human. “While it wasn’t really obvious when I started off the journey but now when I look back, that’s one thread that has continued throughout the journey,” he adds thoughtfully.

The best part is that the folks at went over what I said and made some models which explain beautifully better than my words 🙂

You can read the full interview here.


Personal Social CRM Systems

Image representing Gist as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase
I’ve been using to manage my social media contacts – and it’s an amazing resource.

What is basically does is link all your social network contacts and email contacts together – so before you send a mail to the person you can see what’s on his/her mind on Twitter/Facebook/Linkedin or blog. See What is Gist

Another resource is – a Chrome and Firefox extension unfortunately only for Gmail and Google Apps mails which let you see when you are mailing someone his social network details and status updates. See the review on Web Worker Daily.

Of course, if you are a MS Outlook user – you only need to install the Xobni plug-in – and when you see a mail you can see the recipients and the mails you have exchanged and his/her social network information – and Hoovers information is he/she is on a company email account. Read more here

What are your personal social CRM systems that you use?

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Social Media and Business – Q and A

Twitter logo initial
Image via Wikipedia
I was approached by a journalist to answer some questions on a story
her publication is doing on Social Media – here are the questions and
my answers
Q.      As social media consultant where do you see the loopholes of a
company’s social media marketing?

a.       The biggest loophole is that managers think that social media
is like other media. It’s not. It is a place where users feel the need
to express and comment and create. If brands only focus on
“broadcasting” instead of giving people a platform to create and
connect they won’t enthuse the user.

Q      What is the social media strategy that a company needs to adopt?

a.       Focus on building a community of enthusiasts and evangelists
about their passions, lifestyle or causes. Don’t make Facebook and
Twitter as the fulcrum. Use them to find people who are your
evangelists and encourage them to engage with other users on your

b.      Organizations will need to realize that they need to do two
things that they don’t have currently the skills for – to become
content and community stewards

Q.     How does one measure the social media activities and the result?

a.       There are three metrics that one can track

i. Engagement metrics on the platform

ii. Web metrics

iii. Business metrics – focused on how many people tried or bought the product.

Q. H ow do you think social media is helping the small businesses,
like those who are advertising and marketing their services only
through social media?

A. There are some kind of small businesses like Cafes, restaurants,
bookshops, art galleries which are ideal for social media as their
products and services can have dedicated fans – who engage with it on
social media outlets. Such businesses can incentivise fans to talk
about them on the social web and reward them for such evangelism.

However, for small businesses that are into B2B marketplaces, like
recruiting agencies (e.g. ) it is a
vehicle to build awareness and connect with customers – and also for
Search Engine Optimisation.

Q. do you think having a strong fan following and creating a number of
fan pages are giving these business a boost and scope to flourish?

A. In the US it has been researched that the value of a fan is much
higher than an ordinary customer – so yes if a business displays
engagement with its fans and helps its fans to connect with each other
– it stands to benefit from the goodwill

Q. what is your projection for small businesses who runs only through
social media, says.. 2-3 years down the line.

A. I see social media – specially location based services like
Foursquare and Gowalla – becoming critical to these businesses as it
shows who’s visiting them and are willing to talk about them – such
regulars (“mayors” on foursquare for example) will be key to drive
brand messages by empowering them to talk about the business.

In the future I see value being co-created in the space between the
fan and the businesses, with innovation and ideas for new services and
products being given by these fans.

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Monster Vs Indeed – Visitor Traffic

It has slowly over-taken Monster in Traffic.
This has happened recently – in last 2-3 months as the traffic shows it.
Expanding Reach of Indeed

It doesn't cost anything to add Jobs to Indeed and Indeed is expanding it's reach.

More Jobs Viewed on Indeed
More Page Views = More Jobs views for Job Sites like Monster and Indeed.
So, Indeed has larger number of page-views and has been on the rise since last 2 years consistently.


Where Monster Leads?

 Time Spent on Site Per User!

Here is a link to full blogpost on this topic. Feel free to add your comments.

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The impact of flexible “cloud” workplaces

Co-working provides a single solution to multiple organizational problems: the space demands of flexible, multi-geographical workforces; the costs of permanent offices; the potential inconvenience of working at home (especially for employees with children); the inexperience that many employees have with alliances and joint ventures (which are natural outgrowths of shared space); the carbon footprint inherent in a commuting population; and the sheer waste of time, resources, human capability, and energy spent moving people back and forth across a metropolitan area, only to have them on the phone or reading e-mail most of the day.

For example, at the Hat Factory, a co-working space in San Francisco, two of the tenants are programmers working for Intalio, a business process management software company based 50 miles (80 kilometers) away in Palo Alto. These programmers commute to the Palo Alto office only a couple of days per week. They say their supervisor approves of the arrangement because they accomplish more work on their Hat Factory days than on days when they spend two and a half hours in the car.

Co-working spaces attract young, resourceful employees. The spaces fill up rapidly with people in their 20s and 30s, often those employed in technological fields (Web development, graphic design, social media, videography, blogging) or as writers, attorneys, or management consultants. Rather than cubicles or closed-off rooms, the work spaces tend to favor open desk arrangements that encourage cross-communication and collaboration. In some spaces, workers nest in preferred corners; in others, they switch locations, views, and office mates regularly.

A couple of co-working spaces were set up as experiments in reshaping corporate climates. For example, the Steelcase furniture company opened Workspring in Chicago, which it describes as “a network of extraordinary spaces, designed to inspire and support creative collaboration, productive retreat, and transformative exchange.” The company applies the insights gleaned from space renters to its own next-generation furniture designs. “The trend [in facilities] is for corporations to reduce their fixed real estate costs,” says Steelcase Senior Vice President Mark Greiner, the general manager of Workspring, explaining the reasoning behind this venture. “I was seeing a shift toward elements that weren’t necessarily playing toward our strengths.”