How Can Corporations Harness Social Productivity?
Social media is powerful. We know that and corporations are waking up to take control of their social presence. But is the end goal only engagement through likes, shares and comments? Social media can be productive and help corporations, government and nonprofits realize strategic goals. How can your organization make the transition from using mundane social media participation to powerful collaborative action? Through crowdsourcing.
Crowdsourcing in its simplest form is harnessing the minds and active participation of many. The participation can manifest in many forms as we are seeing today – through funds, sharing resources, ideas, information and scores of innovative applications surfacing every day. Crowdsourcing is not new, but an age-old practice that is now powered through social and mobile networks and the Internet. And for the first time all the social media interactions, that we have grown to become familiar with, is turning into – social productivity where we are creating some thing bigger than just likes and retweets. Can we create cars together? Yes, we can. Every car enthusiast from fabricator, industrial designer to engineer can be a part of collaborative projects from automotive companies through Local Motors. Every designer can upload their work on 99Designs, every toy enthusiast can submit ideas to LEGO, every photographer can be part of ImageBrief, everyone from everywhere can be hired on demand on Freelancer. Simply put, the crowd economy is at the center of great social and economic growth.
The next question I get asked a lot by C-suite executives is how do you harness this social productivity? The new collaborative or crowd economy is a dynamic ecosystem of productive people, who participate through a platform, with a purpose to achieve mutually beneficial goals.
Think of it within the following core pillars, what I call the 5 P’s of the crowd economy.
The crowd economy is empowering, inclusive, disruptive and human centric, where the community is the starting point. The crowd economy or collective action is not about mob behavior but very targeted cooperative solutions that help communities better their lives. By empowering people, organizations are finding new, previously unimagined pathways and solutions to complex problems. Step 1 – Empower your communities.
The crowd economy creates meaningful experiences and embodies a culture of shared value creation and social responsibility that distinguishes itself from the traditional one-dimensional thinking and practices of the old economy. Companies that thrive today are able to find common goals with their stakeholders and work together. Step 2 – Develop a real purpose, instill it into the organization DNA and seek cooperation from your crowds,
Crowds need a medium to interact and produce results. If you think your company does not need a platform, think again. This platform may be digital or not, but in the next 5 years, every company will need a solid platform. This pillar of the crowd economy has manifested in the form of technology, connectivity and mobile networks (though it could assume a non-digital structure in smaller communities.) Soon the Internet of Things will contribute to this medium, amplifying human interactions with powerful data. Step 3 – Start thinking about where your crowd will interact with you and with each other.
Co-creation and participation are emphasized in the crowd economy and communities take an active stake in crafting positive futures. An engaged community is not easy to achieve and has to be worked on. Crowds will surprise you, and there is a need for an agile and open mindset at the C-suite level. Step 4 – Seek active participation, not as an afterthought, but through continuous work and sound strategy.
Crowd economy fosters faster, cheaper, better and resource efficient processes. Helping and participation comes naturally to us and the networked web has fitted this mindset with wings. But are you ready? Step 5 – Set lofty goals for your crowd, let them know and get ready to be amazed.
The crowds are waiting and ready for you to challenge them. In turn they will inspire you. Get ready, the possibilities are endless.
About the Author
Epi Ludvik Nekaj is a serial entrepreneur and the Founder & CEO of Crowdsourcing Week, an organization that is committed to help leaders transition into a more open, connected, and socially productive society through crowdsourcing. In 2008, he created Ludvik Partners – one of New York’s hottest boutique virtual ad agencies built on a 100% crowdsourcing model. Epi Ludvik is one of the pioneers in the crowdsourcing ad space, an industry expert and thought leader in entertainment advertising. In 2015, Epi and his team are bring Crowdsourcing Week events to Singapore and Europe, in addition to summits around the world. Connect with Epi on LinkedIn and follow him on Twitter.
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