Connected, baby!

You’re enjoying your career working with a great team. And then you have a baby. Congratulations!

After a period of joy, angst, laughter, sleep deprivation parental leave you return to work. In a couple of weeks you settle back into the swing of things. Right? Err, not quite.

Not for the most obvious, life changing reasons. A lot can happen in six months or a year in a large enterprise. When you return you might have a new manager. A new job title. There could be a reorganisation. Maybe even a company acquisition. Some of your colleagues could change positions. New people might join the team. There will be different work methods and techniques introduced over time. If you are working part time so you might miss out on team events. Some days you may need to work from home. Suddenly, you are the new girl, again (and in my case, again…and again with the arrival of three precious little boy wonders.)

Throw social media into the mix and things start looking up.

It’s easier for people to know more about you. And for you to know more about them. Quickly.
Your network is now extended to a global “team”. You have access to the latest insights, techniques and thought leadership. Mentoring is no longer restricted to the people you see in the office. Your ability to find relevant information is significantly improved. You’re connected, baby!

When I returned to work after my most recent parental leave in June last year, I found it so much easier to connect. I could access blogs, wikis, communities, social bookmarks, search for people using tags on our directory, meet up with colleagues in a virtual world and see their photos on Flickr or Facebook. Very quickly, I felt much more connected to the company through the people I work with. I have also been able to be part of some fun and rewarding initiatives as a result.

Social media is a great way to connect with people in the workplace, especially for those returning from extended leave, working part time, in global teams and for people working from home or at a client location. Don’t you think?

9 thoughts on “Connected, baby!

  1. Andy Piper

    This is a beautiful story, Jasmin. I’ve not been in your position of taking extended leave, but any time I’m away I know I can quickly catch up through my social networks. It must be so handy in these kind of situations, too.

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  3. Luis Benitez

    Great success story and thank you so much for sharing!!! I think I’ll use it next week when I’m evangelizing social software to a couple of Toronto customers. Expect traffic from Canada next week! ;)

    Oh and see another benefit of social media? It allows me to more easily discover success stories like these. That way I can share them with my customers and my job has just become easier! Without your blog or Facebook, in a company with 350k+ fellow employees, we’d probably never met and wouldn’t have been able to leverage you (who are halfway around the globe).

    Oh and since your title is ‘Connected, baby’, can I assume you are using Lotus Connections internally ? :)

  4. Gavin Heaton

    This is exactly where value lies for enterprises, Jasmin. We run around trying to determine metrics etc, but tend to overlook the productivity gains that can be achieved with new hires, returning workers, sharing organisational knowledge etc. But that is the tip of the iceberg (albeit an important one).

    In many ways social apps in the enterprise help remove the complexity of connecting (across geographies, reporting lines, business units etc). Makes it a fascinating time if you want to DO things.

  5. Ryan

    When people ask (and they still do and often) ‘Why should I blog/tag/connect/comment/participate?’ we need to point to real world examples. This is a great one and something most everyone has either experienced or can identify with. Great story.

  6. wonderwebby

    hi Luis. Great! And of course I am using Lotus Connections :)
    Gavin, love the point about DOing things. Purpose tameth the social leviathan!
    Thanks Ryan for the feedback :)

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