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Noodle XII: Why Machines Won't Displace Human Workers in the Knowledge Economy

Noodle 12: Why Machines Won't Displace Human Workers in the Knowledge EconomyWhy Machines Won’t Displace Human Workers in the Knowledge Economy is a short thought experiment, in the spirit of all Noodles, which was in response to a post in Wired. In Here’s How to Keep the Robots From Stealing Our Jobs, John Hagel posited that a major rationale for the Knowledge Economy firm would be its role as a “knowledge platform” that enabled people to accelerate their learning and productivity. I highly recommend the post, which sparked many intelligent comments.

It’s obvious that many people are having difficulties imagining the world toward which we are hurtling, a world in which machines are getting “smarter” and able to “compete” for work roles that humans now do. In writing The Social Channel App, I thought long and hard about the Knowledge Economy and people’s roles in it, and its main thesis is that everything, from states and enterprises to people and products, will be differentiated in the Social Channel and that “humanness” will assume a much more visible importance in the economy.

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Brand Survival Depends on Improving Customers' Lives

It is exciting to see widening recognition that brand survival depends on improving the lives of customers, not merely “pushing product” as they are accustomed to doing. In the latest example, Business Should Focus on Sociality, Not Social “Media”, Umair Haque offered a case for the end of social media and the disruption of many Industrial Economy structures, namely the social contract.

As regular readers well know, I agree with Haque’s key thesis, that brands need to jettison their legacy focus on products/services in favor of dedicating themselves to helping users achieve outcomes while using their products. I have often written that humans and their organizations will have to adopt a more collaborative and responsible attitude and approach in general. However, I don’t agree with him that there’s only one way to do “sociality” as he implies by his assertion that brands have an “existential responsibility” to “the art of living.” Here I’ll explain the differences, which will help brand stewards understand the nuances of brands’ disruption.

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The End of Social Media Reflected by Fake Followers

Bill Snyder at Infoworld posted some amazing statistics that support the end of social media as we know it, which I predicted in 2009. Marketing and public relations have been losing influence for years because they are impersonal, and people prefer personalized interactions (deep dive here), so marketers and their vendors are grasping at straws. In this context, “social media” has generally been practiced as a shallow promotional activity, and my premise in predicting its demise is that the true potential of social technologies is creating and maintaining relationships, which are based on personalized attention and caring.

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Recruiting: How Firms & People Can Use Social Networks to Win

In Recruiting Reinvented, the CEO of Reppify, which advises firms on using social networks to find job candidates, shared several nuggets for candidates, with a glaring omission that I’ll reveal below. Keep in mind that the focus of the interview was on how firms could use social to up their game, so the nuggets went unnoticed, except over here! One of Reppify’s core offerings is advising firms to use social networks to discover and engage candidates, but without setting off any legal land mines. I’m assuming that Reppify, in addition to screening candidates for clients, creates templated workstreams for their clients to improve recruiting while reducing risk.

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Fear Is B2B Sales' Unusual Trust and Relationship Accelerator

Fear Is B2B Sales’ Unusual Trust and Relationship Accelerator when salespeople know how to understand it and earn trust through empathy.

Having been in management consulting for over 25 years, I agree with Charles H. Green that fear is the core driver of organizations’ and negotiation partners’ “difficult” behavior—and that it offers B2B providers a reliable opportunity to outmaneuver competitors by building trust where they can’t. As usual, he is right on the money in Find the Fear and Swim Upstream to Trust: “Fear is the main driver of … passive aggressive, secretive, avoiding, combative, resentful, backstabbing, gossiping [behavior]…”

But fear can be a gold mine. In my experience, fearful clients or prospects are afraid of a personal or organizational situation, not you. Therefore, their fear and “difficult” behavior is a barrier to all potential providers, which can be your opportunity: by working with the client/prospect to mitigate the root cause, you can develop a high level of trust quickly. Moreover, fear tends to be contagious, and most people, including competitors, avoid it, which can […]

Reputation and Business

conversationsIn An Offer You Can’t Refuse, Lydia Dishman interviews CEO Justin Moore, who discusses his business leadership “lessons learned” from watching The Godfather. It’s a solid post, but very thoughtful and insightful comments take it into classic territory. That said, the post didn’t hit the bullseye for our context here—B2B relationship building—so here goes with the pieces I think it missed. I invite you to add yours in comments.

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Quick How-to: Generating Leads from Social Media

It’s nice to see dawning recognition that social business needs some structure and planning to produce business value, and this post from SocialMouths offers a quick treatment. It presents 5-part approach to generating leads: start with strategy, conduct due diligence, connect content to prime stakeholders, connect social media to marketing, and involve the sales team. […] […]

The Impact of Trust, Relationship and Human OS on B2B Sales

The Impact of Trust, Relationship and Human OS on B2B SalesIn The Ironic Truth About Sincerity, Seth Godin juxtaposes sincerity and performance, and he comments on how they influence trust. It’s a nice riff that gets one thinking, so here I’ll do a deeper dive into how these two elements of trust work together to facilitate or sabotage B2B relationships and sales.

I’ll also link to an even deeper treatment for those who want to open yet more doors.

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Quick Insights on

conversationsIn Mastering The Uncomfortable Art Of Personal Branding, Amber Mac provides some valuable insight into how individuals can engage people by sharing a mix of personal and professional details on their social media profiles. She sites @garyvee. The post could have been more valuable if it had mentioned several use cases and the importance of knowing your audience.

Moreover, individuals engage more effectively when they are clear about whom they’re trying to engage. For example, imagine yourself across the table with two of three of your stakeholders at lunch, what would you talk about? Those are the kind of details to share. Not random things. Another of the post’s valuable points: weave the things together in terms of a story. That will help people relate to what you share and remember you better. We covered this in more detail here: http://bit.ly/blogtwjob2 – see the section under “use scenarios”

Backlash Against Google+ Useful Criticism but Beware of Assumptions

Backlash Against Google Plus Is Useful Criticism but Beware of Assumptions Backlash Against Google Plus Is Useful Criticism but Beware of Assumptions questions some key principles employed by pundits debunking Google Plus.

Here is an excellent example of backlash against Google/Google+ from InfoWorld. This post shows how to 1) how to disconnect Google+ from Google search results and 2) configure your browser to default to non-Google search engines. Useful, but assumes 2 things that will be untrue for some people: a) Google+ results “pollute” search results in all cases; b) Yahoo/Bing give better search results. Although all of the above could be true in some cases, the devil is in the details. It is surprising that the post didn’t mention a much better alternative: info.com, whose algorithm sorts results from all three search engines.

Executive’s Guide recommends being aware of the ground shifting under search. Don’t get caught up in religious wars, and try different things. As we have argued in these pages here, Google+ results will enhance certain kinds of searches and will return inferior results in others. As infoworld says, users can […]