This is the social world

My love for all things social media is well documented in this blog.

Social has changed, is changing, will change some more, the way that we work. How we communicate and collaborate, at a fundamental level. No longer are we limited to or by our own team, organisation, locality, time zone. Because social blows the bloody doors off.

Here is just one small example of how social makes new possibilities. Last year I participated in the CIPD Hackathon. The output was a hack called ‘Chuck out Your Chintz’, focusing on those unnecessary but value poor activities that you often find carried out in HR departments.

A few weeks ago the hack was mentioned by Richard Westney in the weekly #nzlead HR twitter chat. Someone suggested that the chucking out of people related chintz was a good topic for a future discussion. And on Thursday this week Richard and I will co-host this chat together. You can find the link here.

But here’s the thing. I have never met Richard. Not in what we still call real life that is. Never even spoken to him outside of a social network. He lives on other side of the globe. Operates in a different time zone. As I write this on a lazy Sunday afternoon, he is probably fast asleep. If we had wanted to collaborate face to face on this little project, one of would have had to travel for over a whole day to do it. Not to mention spend a whole heap of cash.

But who needs to do that when you have social technology? During the chat on Thursday I will be sat at my desk, probably eating my breakfast, with my first coffee of the day. Those people that chip in from the UK might be doing that too. Or maybe they are on their morning commute into the office checking their timeline on the train, or getting in a tweet while getting the kids off to school. As for some of the other folks taking part in New Zealand? Their working day is done. They might just have had their evening meal. Maybe they are tweeting with one hand and a cheeky vino in the other.

HR folks, separated by thousands of miles but not by shared experiences, ideas, energy. Geography and timezone rendered irrelevant just for one hour. Collaboration on a project by people who met on twitter, but have never met face to face. Would never have engaged but for the tech in our pockets.

This is the social world.

8 thoughts on “This is the social world

  1. Knew I should have finished my weekend blog earlier Gem, it’s on exactly the same theme, seems we’ve both got the warm & fuzzies for ‘social’! I’ll add a link to this in mine just adds to my belief about the power of social to create great things, some big, some small but all meaningful.

  2. Pingback: Why I 💜 social… | Pushing at the edges...

  3. Spot on Gemma. Even better was a recent trip to the UK for me when I met 20-30 people one night who either I knew, or who knew me only from Twitter. It also got me a lunch meeting with Peter Cheese. How else could you get professional development opportunities like that from the other side of the world? I hope we do meet one day, but will it matter if we don’t? Not one bit. Sharing and online collaboration is the future.

  4. Reblogged this on Up the Down Escalator and commented:
    A few thoughts from Gemma Reucroft on a little collaborative event we have coming up this week. People often ask me why I “do Twitter” and this is the reason. As HR professionals we need to manage our own personal development and explore boundaries. I really believe that. Sharing and collaboration is part of the future of HR and business. If you don’t understand that you are missing out.

  5. Gem, on the one hand I celebrate equally this fact, but to temper the enthusiasm my bug bear with the HR twitter sphere is that it is too small, cliquey and shows little signs of going mainstream, where it should be to make an impact. Not your fault or Richard’s or all the fine folk in the HR Twitteratti you see endlessly quoted – but we need to build confidence or bridges to those not ion this sacred place reading great content in all corners of the world.

    • Completely agree. I spend a lot of time advocating the social HR space to any HR type that will listen – not suggesting they all need to embrace it to a significant level – lurking is good too. It is one of the best learning tools at our disposal. I think that those of us that are in it should do what we can to help those that are not.

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