The Interactive Enterprise: End-to-End Interactions Define Performance
To prosper in the Internet Economy it is critical to manage enterprise knowledge from the outside-in not from the inside-out. The inductive and introspective corporate strategies, tactics and systems of the past don’t hold water in the new economy.
Seasoned knowledge managers know this approach. They strive to validate and enhance zones of collaboration, sharing, learning, context and community for people across-the-board. The debut of the Internet Economy over the last several years has made the knowledge manager’s mission even more pressing.
It is crucial to recognize and embrace the new longitudinal value-chain the Internet Economy creates. All facets of the emerging Internet enterprise must be open. The new organizing foundation is the networked marketplace. A far greater percentage of the firm’s assets must focus outside the firm versus inside. Business collaboration will surpass competition and rivalry as the key tool for sustained business development.
Everyone needs to find his or her place - organizationally and individually ñ globally and locally. Productive person-to-person connect time has become even more important in the new Internet Economy.
Knowledge managers need to expand opportunities for relevant, trans-enterprise interactions with partners, suppliers and most of all, customers. Widen the firms front-end. Publish interface specifications to your core business processes. Rotate your inwardly focused knowledge structures 180 degrees to focus on external electronic business relationships. Build your knowledge platform from an external, Internet perspective. Ease the ability to instantly craft the knowledge nexus.
Test yourself: when was the last time you had a meaningful, substantial person-to-person interaction with your partners, suppliers or customers? If it is more than a matter of hours, then you are not yet in the Internet Economy.
It is not enough to just be able to connect and access. You need to interact synchronously. Some may think internetworking and automation may eliminate the need for person-to-person interaction. This is wrong and dangerous.
In reality, the whole purpose of InterBusiness Networking is to increase opportunities for productive supplier/partner/customer interaction. It’s how to advance competitive knowledge and increase wealth creation.
To become an Interactive Enterprise, make your call center a key intelligence listening post. Continuously learn about customers and non-customers. Direct enterprise information to the customer interaction. Take unconditional personal ownership and responsibility to please the customer, partner or supplier in every single interaction. Strive to deepen all relationships. Every strata of the enterprise must implement the new Internet ethos of interactive reconnaissance, synthesis and performance.
Furthermore, assure each interaction is easier, faster and more convenient than the last. Arm you knowledge workers with the tools and environments to accelerate interactive improvement. Heighten awareness about your business through information and knowledge sharing.
Coach your people that satisfaction must be delivered faster than fast. The Internet has compressed, almost eliminated the time available to please customers. Providing optimal and just sufficient information to people is critical to capturing the fleeting moment-of-opportunity. It’s instant gratification or no gratification.
Don’t browse--target and prosecute. Make the investments. Eliminate the barriers. Focus, link and lead. The Internet has expanded your global, 24/7 reach. Establish interactive, self-managing processes. Operate them preemptively. Execute like a robust, fail-safe network. Assure that your processes excel instantly, perpetually and globally.
Finally, exploit the knowledge platform to enable every person’s interactive behavior to expand-the-brand. In Internet logic, mind share equals market share. Refine people interactions to establish and reinforce your invaluable, immediate Internet proximity. Your people and presence must declare and corroborate your Internet brand constantly.
As the frontier of the Internet Economy expands, two types of enterprises will emerge: the Interactive and the dead