It has been a while since last time that I have linked to a weblog post by Robert Scoble and I must say that in this particular case I would have to agree with Euan big time, Scoble is much more of an interesting read nowadays than in the past. I mean, I have been reading off his weblog for a number of months now and up until now I have noticed that I am spending much more time reading through his latest weblog posts than in the past. Take the example of a weblog post he shared a couple of days ago: The next Web is the human Web where he is sharing some interesting views about what different companies are doing while embracing that social software hype that most of us have been talking about for some time now. Yes, indeed, quite an interesting read, to say the least.
One of my IBM fellow colleagues, Adam Gartenberg, who coincidentally just got started weblogging not long ago, picked up on Scoble’s trend of thought regarding how the Web is becoming much more democratised and people-aware than ever before and agreed with Robert (And Hugh) that it is now the time for companies to open up and unleash the power that has been in the hiding for long enough: their people. About time, right? Folks who have been reading of my weblog would recognise how this is something that I have been saying myself for some time now: how thanks to the emergence of social software and the so-called Web 2.0 companies are starting to open up a bit more and are allowing their knowledge workers to actually start making a difference by engaging on multiple conversations not only amongst themselves but where it actually matters: with their customers / clients. That is where the real power of social software emerges to the fullest.
People always want to talk to other people, want to put faces and voices behind words, behind obscured web sites representing whatever the company or whatever the product. If we would want to say something about a particular product, whether we are happy with it or not, we, as social beings, always prefer to talk to other people about it than just talk to a machine-like kind of interface where we never know if we would get an answer in the first place. That is all what humanising the Web is all about. That is what Scoble and Hugh are talking about in their articles. So I guess that next time you bump into whatever the company web site take it for a test, try to find that humanising factor that would allow you make a connection with them and if you cannot find it challenge them. Challenge them to let you know when they are planning to move into the next level of interactions and conversations, when they are going to start making use of different social networking tools available in order to reach out there and get their knowledge workers busy collaborating and sharing knowledge with their clients. See if they are up to the challenge. See if you are.