Tuesday, September 23, 2008

we know we want to connect, but why?

Transforming an organization to be social requires a comprehensive understanding of why we are social animals in the first place. What motivates social interactions? Social psychologists rarely question WHY we have the fundamental need to connect, but readily acknowledge the desire for interpersonal attachments is indeed a powerful driving force in human behavior, on which many psychological processes are built (e.g. emotions, cognitive processes, etc.). 

Modern enterprises are like this too-- rarely questioning WHY its constituents want to connect, but increasingly providing outlets to do so.  As social beings, our quest for belongingness is irrefutable, even after our base needs for survival and reproduction are fulfilled-- look at our exponentially increasing adoption of social media like Facebook and MySpace.

I wholeheartedly believe a company should facilitate and nourish our need to belong and commend the initiatives already in place (whether they receive awards or not); however, before forming and maintaining strong, stable relationships, think about what your constituents desire: how do they want to connect? why? where? 

In my opinion, this will make it magnitudes easier to measure your ROI. 

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