i almost did it September 16, 2013Posted by nicholas gill in productivity, social media.
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I’ve tried to switch off from email and social before. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. After changing a few holidays around due to work commitments this year, I was determined to switch off from work this time round. And that also meant an opportunity for no tweeting, facebooking, checking gmail etc.
It’s a lot harder than it seems. I turned off the work email and realised that my weakest time is putting the kids to bed. When they’re in the little period between shutting their eyes and then properly in the land of nod. Sometimes this takes a few minutes, more usually about 10 – 20. Usually time to attempt the inbox zero challenge and catch up on the social firehose.
Easiest to not look at was Twitter. I went the whole week. No desire to check it. Next was work email. Turning it off stops the easy lapse. I only weakened by need rather than choice as I needed to extend my break due to unforseen circumstances. So had to quickly do this on the Sunday. In and out. 90+ unread a pleasant surprise and quick eyeball meant no horror stories on the return. Switched off. I did plop a few Instagram photos out. Mainly during the kids sleep time when I got frustrated playing Minion Rush (damn, it’s hard. I must be getting old).
I only Facebook’d a few times. To share our boy’s birthday and first day at school pictures.
It’s quite surprising how the urge to take a photo, tweet or update your status is subconsciously gnawing away at you. All the time. I didn’t miss Twitter at all. I think if it had not been a birthday/back to school occasion I would not have felt the need to Facebook either. And after two days I didn’t feel the constant need to check work email either. I only looked at the home email as we’re trying to move house and lots happening there.
As a result, I’m trying not to be always-on. I’m trying to do it in bite-size chunks as I get distracted too easily. I don’t need to turn the phone on in the morning and check. I find it more relaxing. We had our son’s birthday party at the weekend and I kept my phone firmly in my pocket. No tweets, no pictures, no status updates. Just an enjoyable afternoon out.
does social media destroy productivity? November 6, 2012Posted by nicholas gill in social media.
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Every time someone at work gets an IM, a Facebook message or a tweet, it takes them a whopping 23 minutes to get back on task. Here’s a nice infographic to illustrate how social can affect productivity.
Thanks to Kayla for sharing.
the future is uncertain October 12, 2012Posted by nicholas gill in Economy, Knowledge Peers, Morgan cars, social business, social media.
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Last week I attended the Knowledge Peers Exchange 2012. Some of you may remember I presented to a select group of members a while back (just over a year ago having checked – yikes!) on social business so this was my chance to sit back and learn some things. Here’s some stuff and things I found interesting:
Challenges for business heading into 2020
We’re working against a backdrop of constant change, where knowledge/information workers make up over 80% of the salaried workforce.
Where IT/enterprise driven choices have created silos that are damaging business agility.
Where Europe is an ageing population and the emerging BRIC economies are flush with youth.
Where the US and European debt situations will take greater than 10 years to resolve.
Where the continued demand for energy will result in a supply gap.
Where greater consumerisation and socially savvy employees place business at a junction. Do they enable these new employees or do they hinder them with their current working practices?
The business of 2020 will need to:
- Adapt to a changing world.
- Understand the market evolution and composition (particularly emerging economies and SE Asia)
- Exploit and harness the collective knowledge of the information wrorkers
- Understand and balance the confidentiality, integrity and availability of data.
- Deliver value-add.
- Invent and innovate.
Bring Your Own Device (BOYD) is un-managed
57.1% of FTE’s globally use their own devices to access work data. This is not skewed to any geography (although Asia/BRIC is higher) or vertical.
Only 11.9% have a managed BYOD policy or guidelines leading to an opportunity where over 70% of BYOD are unmanaged. While clearly this is a consultancy opportunity, it also shows just how mobile has infiltrated our every day lives so seamlessly that we think nothing of accessing data on on our SmartPhones. Clearly the younger, agile businesses that are not held back by swathes of servers and IT rules will be ahead of the game here. While the panel talked about the security elements, a lot must come down to common sense too. As well as who owns, maintains and replaces the device if it is “personal” but being routinely used – and therefore an essential too – for business use. All this was wrapped under a banner of “Enterprise Mobility Management” which sounds very consultancy and clearly an opportunity to make money. Where’s my CV?
You can never repeat the past but you can be inspired by it
The quote is from the Cartier Chairman but one which Charles Morgan has adopted to explain his car company. Considering I work with one of world’s leading automotive groups in Fiat, I found Charles’ discussion incredibly interesting. How does a small player compete against global giants? The answer is not easily. Not when a typical safety testing programme sets you back £10 million. It would essentially be impossible if it weren’t for alliances. Morgan partner with BMW for engines, for example, and would not consider building their own engines because, as TVR experienced, it’s the way to ruin. But why would BMW be interested in a small, British car brand? Because German’s love British car brands. Remember they bought Rover. Charles said they do it because 1) they love it and 2) they learn something by placing their engines in smaller, lighter and more agile automobiles. Their leading engineer even screamed in delight on a race track that ”I can hear my engine!!!”. Which given the excellent sound proofing and refinement in a BMW is something they’ve clearly missed. Morgan lets the engineers be petrol heads again.
Another key part of the Morgan business model is exporting. They make 1,500 cars a year and over 70% are exported. Nice that a British marque is appreciated abroad but sad too that we buy so much homogenous automotive design now that we don’t appreciate our own iconic marques as much. I loved Charles’ observation that modern cars are pretty much an extension of your living room; a car should excite you and put a smile on your face.
Which is why they’re investing in social media. Not only does it cut across the stuffy old Morgan image that some may have but allows them to express that desire of driving excitement.
This is a nice video of Morgan.
The key theme here was that there’s still a lot of fear about moving to a more social business and adopting the cloud. What if? Why? Some examples included swapping email for social collaboration tools and just getting more noise back. The answer is (scroll back through previous posts on this) about context. Email is bad when used poorly. The same goes with any social platform. But they have the advantage of control, filtering and collaboration.
The link between social, mobile and the cloud is still unclear but companies like Salesforce.com are stealing a march with their offerings here.
The UK economy outlook
Barry Nesbitt, the Chief Economist of Santander UK, gave us an overview of the current and future state of the economy. There is no magic wand. The recession started in 2008 and the conditions are still challenging. It’s the longest recession we’ve faced where by this stage we haven’t got back to the levels of GDP output pre-recession.
2013 is predicted to show some growth but before you get excited, it’s small.
But they key theme was one of uncertainty. As the chart below shows, the economists have a huge range of expectations for the coming years for both GDP and inflation. It could be OK (although the growth is still small) or it could not be. Trouble is, the uncertainty causes subdued expectations. And with inflation still higher than our earnings, none of us are spending any money because we’re uncertain. There is a subdued outlook in the services industry and construction and manufacturing which traditionally drives GDP output.
So, heads down.
every 60 seconds… August 6, 2012Posted by nicholas gill in digital, social media.
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… this happens
at work – behind the scenes June 15, 2012Posted by nicholas gill in brand experience, Doner, pinterest, social media, social networks.
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Pinterest. The next big shiny object and must have in every presentation you give. And like I always say, you’ve got to try these things. So, I have. And have been for some time. But my own collection was a bit, er, well, a bit too me. So I decided to do a bit of behind the scenes at work. Not least because I seem to have collected a few images but people seem to like to know what goes on behind closed doors. So here’s a flavour of life behind the scenes at Doner.
social clean up January 16, 2012Posted by nicholas gill in personal brand, social media, social networks, unfriend.
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January is typically a time for New Year’s resolutions. But I typically don’t stick to them so I haven’t made any this year. Instead, quite by accident, I found myself gaining much self-satisfaction from cleaning up the social media tangle I find myself in.
It all started quite innocuously by being bored of the same update from several people on Twitter. I mean, really, we ALL read Mashable and the like. Why re-tweet it? So I stopped following them. Then I figured I should review who I was following:
- People who haven’t said anything in months? Unfollow.
- People who I followed more out of faux fraternity of being employed together rather than wanting to find out what they were really doing? Unfollow.
- People who post things that are just not interesting to me anymore. or ever. Unfollow.
- And worst of all, people without a real picture! Unfollow.
And Twitter is now an easier place. I still follow people I like, can find inspiration and new things from and find amusing. It also takes less time to catch up. And there’s blissfully few repeats.
And then came Facebook. Similar rules applied. Although oddly I found this a little harder. Maybe in the Facebook frictionless sharing world I would be outed as a serial unfriender? But after a few test unfriends, this didn’t happen. So I carried on. The net result again is a smaller, more defined, more real social network. There’s still work to be done. Especially when I peek at Linked In and see updates from people I haven’t got a clue who they are and think, “hmm, must be a recruiter.”
I’m not the only one who is doing this. It all started out as a bit of a rush. Collecting people, with the “friend”, “followers” or “connections” number being directly attributable to your social worth. Of course this is, and always was, bollocks. It’s quality, not quantity that counts. And while I’m very much in the “don’t know well” category from the infographic above, there are many who are cleaning up their networks for a variety of reasons. The net result though, is I’m enjoying my social circles again. It’s also why I’m highly reluctant to start another collection on Google Plus.
So if I no longer follow you or appear as your friend, it’s not personal, it’s just business.
social media boredom November 21, 2011Posted by nicholas gill in brand experience, social media.
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Brands today need to deviate from the conventional Social Media marketing path if they want to keep the consumers interested. Article by me in Technology Digital.
we fear change November 16, 2011Posted by nicholas gill in advertising, brand experience, digital, integration, marketing, social brand, social business, social media, technology, Technology Digital.
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Change is the only constant factor in life and in the world of Technology; the businesses which realize this sooner, can only gain from it. Article by me in Technology Digital.
digital waste November 11, 2011Posted by nicholas gill in brand experience, social brand, social media.
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61% of UK consumers don’t want to engage with brands in social media. “Start the car!” as Bumble might say.
It’s inevitable really if brands just leap in to the social space and add nothing but beigeness. Most people don’t want a conversation with your brand. Less still a constant broadcast of why your brand is so great. Most were probably initially attracted by an offer or competition. But got bored by the poor content spewed out daily with little thought and little interaction when their audience have a question or a problem; missing the holy grail of social which is real-time engagement and adding value. I prattle on about this in this video (from c 2min 50) from the talk I gave at a recent Knowledge Peers event. It’s common sense really. How can your brand intervene helpfully in the daily lives of your audience? Switch your thinking from inside-out to outside-in. Think about that before you jump onto the next big shiny object.
no such thing as a free lunch November 2, 2011Posted by nicholas gill in advertising, social media, social networks.
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A fascinating article on privacy, advertising and the use of your data on social networks and the new alternatives such as Diaspora and Unthink to the accepted norm. Where Hugh once said if you talked to people the way advertising does, they’d punch you in the face, he was talking about traditional ATL advertising and the shouty nature of the traditional 30′ spot. This quote from the article suggests that advertising in social media could possibly be worse; rather than just blurting at you in ad breaks, it snoops on you and brazenly flashes this in your face. Good food for thought to start your day with.
Imagine you’re eating out with your lady or a loved one; the restaurant is completely free from 12pm until 2pm. Free. Trouble is, your entire conversation is being recorded and watched closely. Every time you both mention something that suggests an interest in a product or purchase or place – an ad rep/TV/radio ad/leaflet appears in front of you and pitches away. Mention you’re interested in a mini break; cue the man from the travel agency peddling his wares. Your meal is free though, don’t forget. You can always ignore the ad man. How many of us would appreciate that constant eavesdropping? Few. Remarkable then that the digital world doesn’t quite suffer the same reaction. It all feels so remote and far way.