I just read Stowe Boyd’s post, Enterprise Software Is Unsexy: Because It’s Not About Individuals, But Groups. Looking at it wearing my Enterprise Communication Strategy goggles, I see some interesting corollary’s. Stowe is primarily talking about software design and my post is about how organizations choose to express themselves. But in reality we are talking about the same thing, treating people as people and not as their function, role, job, etc. People are inherently social , meaning that the nature of the relationship between individuals is a key criteria to the effectiveness of their interactions.
When software design, or communication plans, do not consider the social aspect and individuality of their intended “audience”, there is little chance that audience will become an engaged community. Now if the design objective is strictly about efficiency, compliance or risk management, maybe this approach is good enough. If the objective has anything to do with learning, engagement, innovation, etc., consideration of the individual as a social entity becomes critical.