Expert Profile – View

What is your name?

Oscar Berg

Who are you and what are you doing?

I live in the city of Lund, Sweden, and work at Acando, a Swedish management consultancy with operations in Scandinavia and Northern Europe. I work as consultant with strategy, business development, architecture, conceptual design, and change management, primarily with global businesses.

How did you get to the E2.0 topic?

I think it was quite a natural move for me, something that happened almost without me noticing it. I have worked as business analyst, usability architect and business developer with improving content management processes, collaboration, knowledge management and communication with the help from IT and web technology in particular since the mid 90ies. My passion for creating solutions to make people communicate, share and collaborate across barriers such as time, location and culture has led me to Enterprise 2.0. As I started blogging about things that interest me such as Web 2.0, Enterprise 2.0, KM, ECM, Collaboration and Enterprise Architecture in early 2007 on my blog, I got in contact with a lot of other people within the emerging Enterprise 2.0 community which has been very stimulating. It has made me invest a lot of time and effort in this field, because I feel I am getting a lot back from other people in the Enterprise 2.0 community. I also see an intersection of all my interests in Enterprise 2.0.

What is your understanding of the core concept of the Enterprise 2.0 idea?

The Internet and the web in particular has enabled a shift in how people communicate with each other, enabling rich and frequent two-way communication with a reach, immediacy, usability, and accessibility (due to low production cost) that can't really be compared to any advance in communication technology in human history (yes, that might provoke some, but that is my personal opinion). We are no longer limited to the previously bad scalability of communication, cooperation and collaboration technologies, something which not only makes us question large and hierarchic organizations but also makes it theoretically possible for a single individual to manage and operate a business on a global scale â€" with the help from a network of contributors, including customers. To me, Enterprise 2.0 is fundamentally about trying to understand and using what we know about this shift today and to apply it in an enterprise context to help enterprises fulfill their purposes. It is not just about implementing social media or deploying social technologies in an enterprise. Rather, it requires a thorough understanding the values, principles, culture and human behaviors that make communication, sharing and collaboration happen in such an easy and natural way on the social web. We need to look at what kind of values can be created for enterprises and how they will need to transform themselves to enable this value creation.

What are the main potentials of the Enterprise 2.0 idea?

Given my understanding of the core concept of the Enterprise 2.0 idea, there is a diversity of potentials. Here are some of the potentials that I am currently focusing on to help customers utilize:

Improving findability, discovery, maintenance and reuse of information, thereby reducing human latency and avoiding time spent on searching and managing information, reducing waste and rework, and avoiding reproduction of information that already exists.

Creating ambient awareness that allows people to know what goes in in their work environment and when it is their turn to contribute - despite that the people and resources are physically disconnected by time, location, culture.

Facilitating the capture and sharing of tacit knowledge, as well as allowing ideas to flow and finding their way to people who can make them happen, thereby fueling innovation.

Enabling more efficient and effective communication, sharing and collaboration within teams and within an enterprise as a collective, as well as allowing new co-operations and collaborations to emerge by allowing people who otherwise would not find each other to find each other, connect, and build trust in each other.

Enabling the people within an enterprise to aggregate, maintain and share a collective body of knowledge and intelligence with the enterprise as a collective.

What are the main challenges, threads and issues of the Enterprise 2.0 idea?

The technocratic focus on Enterprise 2.0 that believes that the tools and technologies themselves will help to solve the kind of problems we are addressing that I am seeing all over is worrying me. Installing a social software platform won't make a difference unless the enterprise as collective is not ready for a transformation of its culture, practices, attitudes and behaviors. It won't be possible to create real value from Enterprise 2.0 technologies without such a transformation taking place.

Lack of leadership commitment and alignment with business vision and strategy is a key challenge when trying to create value with Enterprise 2.0. Grass-root adoption is not enough â€" although value can emerge as parts of an enterprise transforms itself, the enterprise as collective won't transform unless the leadership supports this transformation. So any grass-root approach to Enterprise 2.0 must always be complemented and supported by a top-down approach which is supported by top management.

Finally, fear of making mistakes that prevents a more agile and pragmatic way to explore, understand and validate potential business benefits is a major obstacle to creating value with Enterprise 2.0. Failing is inevitable, and daring to fail is crucial to succeed.

Please give us three tags that describe your person and work best?

simplicity, collaboration, web

Please give us three links to articles/contributions that describe your views best?
Please give us three names of colleagues that you would refer to as brother-in-spirit?

I have so many people I admire and respect in the Enterprise 2.0 space, but since I must pick three names: