Even with all the recent economic disruption and financial turmoil, companies must prepare for an oncoming tsunami. Companies need to rethink their relationship with employees. They need to change internally and externally the way they engage and communicate with their employees and prospective candidates.
Management will have to change their idea of organizational structure from hierarchal or matrix to peer-to-peer structures with their group work philosophy and power cliques. A new environment will emerge where individual power within an organization doesn’t just come from position but is strongly influenced by connectivity, peer ranking, expertise, etc. In fact, connectedness will have a greater and greater influence on power both within and outside an organization.
So those of you who scoff at a twenty somethings today with 2000 Facebook friends should be cautious, those same twenty somethings could one day wield tremendous organizational and market power.
So how do companies prepare for this coming tsunami? They need to get involved now. Engage social media, implement social networking tools internally and externally. Allow employees to reach through the corporate firewall and form connections with the next generation of worker, engage them in a conversation, learn and absorb their culture and ideals.
In essence build a boat, get on board and meet the tsunami head on; you may get rocked around at sea but you will survive. Stay motionless on land however and you’re bound to be crushed.