When Businesses Don’t Connect the Dots

Hey, interested in a demo on "xyz" product? The email sits in your inbox.

We haven't met, but I work at Big Business, and would like to show you what the tool does, etc. That's right, you haven't met at all. But you do sort of know their kind, don't you? One side of the company is busy ignoring you, while the other reaches out for a free link on your website.

All the while, the organization is preaching the social business gospel to clients. This is not just a conversation about social CRM, which I would expect is impeccable when you sell it as part of your value proposition.

To recap, in case you missed the irony, this is what people who come into contact with this kind of business experience:

  • person in career services lets the automation system read applications – I mean, the company gets so many, right? It's not like someone whose work is to hire the best would even look. And, let's face it, we all know why there is advice that you need to network with the business side first
  • except for when you talked to the business side, through existing relationships, nonetheless, you were told to "apply" online as well. Someone will get back to you
  • you are receiving pitches from said organizations to write about products and services on behalf of its clients and about the organizations itself, yet you never hear back about the application, nor the connection is made that you are that very same person
  • your friends and contacts share that it's a great environment to work in, and an organization that really has its act together. They do find and hire the best people, and that is why you inquired about working there
  • and they are actively working with clients, globally, on this new concept of social business, which will really change everything inside their clients' organizations

This is a real story, by the way. And not the only one I've learned about.

How do you poke the box? How do you know if what people say is true? You don't just take their word for it, do you? Sure, there is a measure of credibility that comes from certain actions: Like doing what you said you were going to do.

I conduct experiments and interviews. A/B split testing on content, submitting legitimate inquiries to customer service lines, and yes, I talk with people who have applied for jobs in those organizations (that is a unique experience in companies, try it).

You know, all those things you do when you want to research, not just assume.

It turns out I was wrong.

Five fatal disconnects of the connected company

  1. it doesn't let you join by network, attraction, and invitation
  2. working there just scratches the surface on learning, growing, and giving growth to others
  3. it certainly doesn't mean it's found the time to research and select the best tools
  4. it doesn't have time to engage, it's more about helping clients do that
  5. it facilitates conversations by posting frequently to internal and external sites, it doesn't have time to design its own business through interactions

Most importantly, a connected company just knows better. Period. You'll just have to take their word for it.


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