I attended FutureGov’s Gov 2 Gov event at Canada House on Friday. Superb chandeliers, live tweeting commentary of the speakers, and an opportunity to discuss the use of social media as a tool for government engagement.
I may have been the only person in the room not twittering throughout the evening’s talks; twittering by mobile phone, something I learnt recently and was sure indicated my high level of technological advancement, was a bit old school for this room of social media afficionados.
What was most interesting for me was that the issues for strategic thinkers in digital engagement seem to be the same as the barriers that I come across (and subsequently beat down with a sledge hammer) in my change, sustainability and general business improvement work: people and organisations forgetting to ask, ‘Why are we doing this?’, ‘Who are we doing it for?’ and ‘What is the best way to do it?’, before diving into things head on.
Digital media and the potential for mass collaboration is a fabulous segue to asking those questions. It’s the perfect combination of geeky and cool; most people want to be a part of it before they fall behind; and those who think it’s ‘never going to catch on’ will be the ideal antagonist for office debate – and will eventually be telling the rest of the world that they were a part of it all from the very beginning.