Building Web 2.0 Enterprise: McKinsey Global Survey Results

This wednesday I got interviewed by a master student who’s writing a thesis on the cultural implications of Enterprise 2.0 (he promised to share his findings with me, so stay tuned …). Whatever, during our talk I argued with this late McKinsey survey (“Building the Web 2.0 Enterprise“) about reasons and traits that make Enterprise 2.0 projects and corporate implementations successful. Reason enough to examine it again, even when the survey doesn’t tell us much about methodology, nor about who got selected into the round of participants. But hey, actual numbers are always interesting, and the underlying models and assumptions are even more so. And as McKinsey is known for being heard in corporate boardrooms, it’s relevant (and you notice the pattern …)

One interesting point is the prevalence of knowledge management as area for enterprise 2.0 usage. I said this before, Enterprise 2.0 can breathe new life into a field that once seemed so out of date.

Another thing that I noticed is that organizations that are satisfied with their Enterprise 2.0 efforts are overall effecting more changes to organizational structures and processes than those that aren’t satisfied. This is something that Bertrand Duperrin notes too:

This is what to conclude from this McKinsey Survey (by the way, it confirms what I’ve been thinking for years) that tries to bring us a view of the state of the art in enterprise 2.0 adoption. At first sight I really didn’t like the title “building the web 2.0″ enterprise because it would suggest tools are central in organization. Fortunately, their survey shows it’s really the opposite.

First conclusion : bringing web 2.0 within the enteprise is not a fad but a heavy wide-range trend : internal, external, various tools, wide perimeters of experiment. Second conclusion : promises are not as easy to be delivered than many thought.

It’s not a suprise for me and it matches what I observed. Two kind of companies are emerging : those who had a tool-centric view and thought the rest will follow, and those who used tools as pieces of an organization change process.


Well, you need to change, and please don’t just see it as an add-on. The willingness to change the organisation, mind-set, processes and culture is the key factor. Scary, soft, social stuff that needs to be understood when trying to improve collaboration. And companies should learn a lot from their own “Intranet 1.0″ (and knowledge management) failures (and successes) before setting out for an Enterprise 2.0 journey …

2 Responses to “Building Web 2.0 Enterprise: McKinsey Global Survey Results”

  1. The willingness to change – that’s really the key factor! David Weinberger made it very clear on his speech about knowledge on the DLD conference (Munich) – they have a nice video on this.

    The old style comes very authoritarian (top down), the new wiki-style is much more open and focused on making things constantly better!

  2. Martin Koser says:

    Matthias, yes – but it’s so hard. David Weinberger argued along the same lines at LeWeb too, but even among the web people presnt there were a lot of skeptics that outright negated the feasibility of this kind of leadership/mode of organization.

    Stand by, I will try to find and link to both of these videos …

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