Saturday, 24 November 2007

What's this Social Business thing about?

I've been blogging about human capital management (HCM) for a few months now, and have explained that I see this, not as the management of people AS human capital, but the management of people FOR human capital. HCM is an approach that invests in the accumulation and development of human capital as an intangible basis for ongoing competitive advantage.

However, I actually believe that there are three main intangibles in an organisation, which are human, organisation and social capital. And out of these, I think it is social capital that provides the greatest opportunity for business competitiveness. This is partly because of the new possibilities provided by social media, and the new expectations of the millennial generation. It's also because it's becoming increasingly apparent that the traditional way of managing organisations isn't working very well.

I'm defining the social business (I'm calling it the new social business to differentiate it from those organisations devoted to dealing with social causes) as an organisation that takes advantages of these opportunities.

This is an area that I don't think many people know much about, and I will admit to feeling fairly unknowledgeable about it myself. So whereas in my other blog, I feel about to comment as an expert about human capital, I have set up this one to support a personal journey of learning. But I hope that readers will want to take this journey with me as well.

And I also hope that my understanding of HCM, and aspects such as best fit,intangibility and complexity, as well as specific tools, such as the HCM value matrix, described within my book, will help me add something new to this field.