IBM invites thousands to online "social business jam" - debate or lead gen?

IBM gears up for "social business" push...
Written by Tom Foremski, Contributor

IBM uses "Jams" online meetings that can include tens of thousands of employees to brainstorm around specific subjects, and it often talks about how they are very successful.

IBM is planning a "Social Business Jam" from February 8 to 11, inviting thousands of "leaders" from outside of IBM to look at the evolution of business.

Social Business Jam participants will cooperatively explore the value of social technology in business, its challenges, and the management system required to drive a social transformation resulting in a blueprint for organizations to help them become a social business.

It is part of a new sales push at IBM focused on helping organizations become "social businesses."

The Social Business Jam comes on the heels of IBM's new initiatives to help organizations become social businesses with the broadest support for smart phones and cloud delivery models. IBM recently introduced new software, services and programs that will help organizations integrate social networking concepts into business processes to accelerate collaboration, deepen customer relationships, generate new ideas faster, and enable a more effective workforce.

Here is Irving Wladawsky-Berger explaining how the "social business" initiative eveloved:

Irving Wladawsky-Berger: From e-business to Social Business

What is a social business? In the past few years, the term has been used to mean “a non-loss, non-dividend company designed to address a social objective,” - a new kind of capitalism to serve humanities most pressing needs, pioneered by Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammed Yunus and others.

But with the rise of social media, another major use of social business has emerged. IBM’s basic definition is short and simple: A Social Business embraces networks of people to create business value.

It will be interesting to see if anything interesting comes out of IBM's "Social Business Jam" or if it is just a big lead generation opportunity for IBM salespeople to push products and services. After all, it seems that IBM has all the answers already prepared -- it just needs the questions.


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