Introducing the CIO Collaboration Network

by Dave Michels

Next up: The CIO Collaboration Network. It is a silly long name, but does say it all – CIO focused forum for conversations around collaboration. I will be your host, or in webspeak, the Community Manager.

The Obvious Questions

What’s the difference between this site and the other sites I post? Two main differences – the CIOCollaborationNetwork is indeed a collaborative forum – that is you can create your own userid, and blog away. Of course, content from trolls will be removed. But we want involvement, participation, and conversation – not just comments. Secondly, the intended audience is CIOs and end users – we want to cover real issues that keep CIOs up at night. Less coverage of the vendors and industry news, and more concentration on end-user issues.

What’s the difference between collaboration and UC? That’s a sticky one and there are more answers than there are experts to ask. I think there are two big differences and several minor ones. First, UC tends to be about the technology (presence, video, IM, voice, etc.) and collaboration tends to be about the objective and/or result. The second issue is collaboration has more emphasis on soliciting input (conversation) to solve a problem, and creating an environment that instills innovation. That said, I don’t think there is a lot of difference. UC is certainly used for conversation, problem solving, and innovation.  I often use the terms interchangeably. I think the difference is bigger for people outside the industry, including end users. ‘Collaboration’ is, after all, a word that is in the dictionary – and ‘unified communications’ is not.

What does a Community Manager do? I am not entirely sure, but it seems to involve a lot of blogging and encouraging conversation.  In addition to the new site, there is also a Twitter account (@CIOCollab), Facebook page, and LinkedIn Group.  I will be propagating the message and inciting riot at these locations. I’ll also be doing a regular newsletter.

The site is sponsored by Avaya, does this mean the content is an ad?  No. This was my first question.  Avaya sponsorship makes the site possible, and Avaya will be contributing some content. However, the site is managed by IDG, and all of my communication has been with IDG staff including direction from editors at CIO Magazine. My posts and content are not directed by Avaya, nor am I expected to plug Avaya.

Is this a Full Time Gig? No. It will take up a lot of my time, but I plan to continue posting here and at other sites, publishing TalkingPointz research reports, and attending conferences like there is no tomorrow. In other words, I remain responsible for my own health insurance.

Check it out!