Open Leadership is social media for business

This is a watershed milestone kind of book for social media and businesses & organizations both non-profit and governmental. Millions of us have a good sense of how social media is connecting people individually in the informal social sense.

Not so many have figured out how to connect business goals with social media.

Now there’s a book to guide organizational leaders and managers to develop an effective social media strategy. There are a number of great examples mentioned in this new book by Charlene Li, Open Leadership: How Social Technology Can Transform the Way You Lead, citing case studies from Zappos, Starbucks, Best Buy, and more. (Apparently JetBlue didn’t make the cut.) Watch my video review:

At the time of this writing, the 8 free critical resources mentioned in the book’s appendix are not yet posted online. Or, I haven’t found them on the website yet. I hope and wish they’ll get it online very very soon. Can’t wait!

And stay tuned this summer for the book that’s “social media for non-profits.” Authored by none other than Beth Kanter, The Networked Nonprofit: Connecting with Social Media to Drive Change. From the same publisher as Open Leadership, Jossey-Bass. Genius.

Aside: I first heard about the book during the Catalyst West conference, where Charlene Li was a main speaker. While I was mesmerized and transfixed on every word, dozens in the audience were stirring in their seats — maybe because they were hungry since the talk was right before lunch. I knew right off I had to get a copy, and I was able to get an advance review copy there, with a voucher for the real printed hardback edition. And it was delivered to my home yesterday. Yes!

[update] Read an excerpt of Open Leadership in BusinessWeek::

This discomfort of not being in control is the reason why I wrote Open Leadership. It’s my attempt to help leaders understand how the rules have changed and how they need to adjust. At the core, leaders have to acknowledge that they are not in control and probably never really were. Instead, leadership is about establishing a relationship, and social technologies are redefining how relationships are formed, grown, and supported.

p.p.s. I actually had queued up a blog post in my Drafts folder before the book launched…

Leading more openly and more online

Conversations are no longer limited to time and space, it’s online and potentially all over the world.

Another thing that’s greatly valuable about this new book, Open Leadership, is that it provides practical tools for a business organization to develop its social media strategy — these are the 8 critical open leadership resources that will be at ::

  • The challenges
  • Openness audit
  • Engagement pyramid data
  • Benefits and lifetime value calculator
  • Social media policy directory
  • Readiness checklist
  • Open leadership self-assessment
  • Open leadership skills assessment

And, one more very valuable resource is Altimeter Group’s list of sample social media policies extant at a number of companies. These Corporate Blogging Policy Examples give you a head start on formulating one for your own organizations.

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