2 min read

Dennis McDonald on Corporate Resistance to Web 2.0 and the Gartner "Hype Cycle"

I had lunch with Dennis McDonald yesterday. We were initially introduced through the LinkedinBloggers Group, where he is now one of the moderators.

Dennis is a consultant focusing on “strategy, assessment, planning, and project management support to organizations that manage information technology (I.T.) and the business processes that I.T. supports.” As he described to me yesterday, he uses his blog to highlight his professional interests -he is not a professional blogger. It was encouraging to hear that Dennis is more concerned about providing valuable, on-topic content than he is about the ‘link game’. In other words, he is not going to alter what he writes on just to get more links and traffic.

The focus of our meeting (besides getting to know each other offline), was to discuss one of his latest pieces entitled On Corporate Resistance to Enterprise Web 2.0 Dennis has been looking for feedback from fellow bloggers – receiving thoughts from people like Jeremiah Owyang and Rod Boothby.

From the piece:

Management will need to adapt to the fact that employees are now able to engage with customers more frequently and on a more personal level than ever before. Companies will respond differently depending on their structures, management styles, and regulatory constraints.

Dennis has definitely leveraged the feedback he has solicited. What he currently has posted is already improved from the hard copy I printed out a couple of days ago. My arguments on “corporate resistance to Enterprise Web 2.0″ would be laid out as follows (as discussed with Dennis and stemming from points in his paper):

  • Articulate the difficulties to accept a more interactive, less controlled, and more distributed software environment (culture and policy issues, especially at an executive level, both internally and externally).
  • Describe the concerns about data security and stability issues.
  • Focus on the lack of tangible benefits (versus flashy features) and the need to quantify ROI (I’m pointing him to this entry).

Related to this piece is an entry he put up at The Podcast Roundtable called The Gartner “Hype Cycle” and Enterprise Web 2.0 Adoption:

Basically, “Web 2.0″ means different things to different people.

To the programmer, it’s a set of tools and techniques that have the potential for fundamentally altering how network based applications and data are managed and delivered.

For newer or smaller companies, it’s an opportunity to acquire technical and business process infrastructure at a fraction of the investment made by older and legacy companies.

For the marketing manager it’s an opportunity to “end-run” a traditionally unresponsive I.T. department.

Good stuff, Dennis. It was a fun lunch and I am sure there will be subsequent discussions both on and offline going forward.

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