Productivity, Social Business

– We have to get rid of email to get internal collaboration work!

– We have to get rid of email!

Don Tapscott, an adjunct professor at the University of Toronto, spoke with McKinsey’s Rik Kirkland in September 2012. Here is what he said!

” So, there’s a big change that’s underway right now in rethinking knowledge management. It’s really moving toward what I would call content collaboration, as opposed to trying to stick knowledge into a box where we can access it. E-mail is sort of like what Mark Twain said about the weather. Everybody’s talking about it, and nobody’s doing anything about it. We have to get rid of e-mail.

You need to have a new collaborative suite where, rather than receiving 50 e-mails about a project, you go there and you see what’s new. All the documents that are pertinent to that project are available. You can create a new subgroup to talk about something. You can have a challenge or an ideation or a digital brainstorm to advance the interests of that project. You can cocreate a document on a wiki. You can microblog the results of this to other people in the corporation who need to be alerted.”

Watch the interview and read the transcript here!

2 thoughts on “– We have to get rid of email to get internal collaboration work!

  1. Isn’t this called Sharepoint? This is about push vs. pull. Email calls our attention (it pushes us to read and respond). Collaborative sites need to pull us in somehow. People aren’t going to think about going to a collaborative site unless it becomes a habit for them — specific to an immediate need. I think the collaboration sites are still great for sharing documents and information and should be utilized. Most likely, e-mail will go away and texting will take it’s place as the “draw” to the collaboration site.


    1. That is a fair point of view. I partly agree, but not at everything. Sharepoint is not about sharing a one single version of truth document across the enterprise – it’s about copying the document to a lot of sites without transparency. Modern social collaboration should give you the information you need to do your job and nothing else, unless you say so. It is all about focusing on activities and not email. I do not agree with you that email will disappear. I thought so for a year or two when I changed work habits, but email is here to stay, but less of it. Since I went from working the old fashioned way (in/out email) – going from sending to sharing – I reduced my email by close to 80 %. That saved me time, kept me more focused on my tasks and helped me get out of a state of burnout.


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