Getting Beyond Technology: Driving Adoption That Matters for Business Results, Even in Highly Regulated Industries! [#e2conf]

This session is presented by John Stepper (Deutsche Bank) and Bryce Williams (Eli Lilly).  You can find the session slides at  Username: workshop; Password: boston2011.

[These are my notes from the Enterprise 2.0 Conference 2011 in Boston.  Since I’m publishing them as soon as possible after the end of a session, they may contain the occasional typographical or grammatical error.  Please excuse those. To the extent I’ve made any editorial comments, I’ve shown those in brackets.]


  • Some Big Challenges of Working in a Regulated Industries
    • “Regulations present a perfect reason to do nothing.” Some of this is because few truly understand the rules, although all fear them.  Therefore, there is little incentive to change what works.
    • Early in the process, involve the key people who understand the regulations and need to be part of developing your governance structure. Build smart compliance into your system.
    • Even if you are being innovative, try to find precedents in your industry so that people in your company aren’t faced with the daunting task of testing the rules. Membership in organizations like the Social Business Council can help you learn about success stories in your industry.
    • Take smart risks. Some risk is necessary for innovation, but don’t bite off more than you can chew.  Incremental change is better.
  • Communities of Practice. Start here.  They are focused on real business issues and are close to the frontlines. Use the experience of your communities of practice to identify and spread success stories and best practices. Consider bringing community leaders together into an internal council to help with compliance.
  • Eli Lilly’s Social Collaboration. They had some challenges related to regulation and existing technology.
    • Their collaboration tool could house only transitory information.  No documents of record.
    • For privacy reasons, they could not pre-populate the collaboration space with content. Further, they decided not to link to their document management system.
    • They had to use an opt-in method, rather than rolling it out across the enterprise with a full participation default.
    • They had to integrate their SharePoint Portal with their Jive collaboration platform.
    • They used their collaboration tool to facilitate internal communications in connection with various Eli Lilly events (e.g. anniversary celebrations, humanitarian efforts, etc.)
    • They use the tool to crowdsource news, activities and events with community questions/clarifications.
  • Key Benefit of Eli Lilly Social Business Effort. It makes it easy for Eli Lilly people to help their colleagues.
  • What about SharePoint? Consider the waste and expense associated with users across the enterprise trying to turn SharePoint into a collaborative website. If you implement a proper social business tool, you will spend a great deal less on SharePoint waste.  With those cost savings, all the proven benefits of collaboration within the enterprise are just gravy.
  • Focus on Value. One key value of collaborative tools is that they help reduce the number of times the same questtion needs to be answered time and time again.  Before launch, consider asking the service/answer providers within your organization to pre-populate your collaboration tool with FAQs and answers to questions that are critical. This should help reduce their workload going forward.

Comments are closed.

Create a website or blog at

Up ↑