In Part I of how to speak with hospital executives on social media, I rattled off a list of items to consider when approaching hospital executives concerning social media and other contemporary technologies. Here are more:
Costs and Risks of Social Media
Think about how executives view the world: they know full well that nothing comes without costs and risks. No effort in social media is without cost or risk. You have to be very open about this – in fact, during the initial discussion, the down-sides aught to be among the first things to point out. Why? Because we’re discussing Investment, and we all know that investments begin with cost and risk. Since social media are so ramifying and repurposable and plastic, you must consider the wide range of opportunities and dangers they pose.
Remember that business propositions ultimately hope for one of two kinds of assets: tangible and intangible. Calculations for return on investment were developed for investment decision-making on tangible capital projects – holding companies that owned multiple subsidiaries needed a quick method to decide on the vast array of capital projects. So we use them today. Such calculations don’t always work very well for intangibles. What matters is the basis for decision-making. If you can’t offer a traditional roi calculation then you better have some other basis for executive decision-making. Smart executives understand this – so never evade roi: just offer easy tools for them to give the permissions you seek.
Internal Value Extraction
Too often, the focus of how to uses social media is on public uses – marketing, communications, customer service. But there are internal values to using these media (if they’re placed within the right contexts and processes). Executives are always seeking value extraction within their organizations. If you can identify one, two or three simple ways to incorporate social or other digital technologies – even if on in a limited trial – you can better illuminate how these media can be useful.
You also need to explain the difference between Consumer Media and Enterprise Media. What works on Twitter and Facebook might not port well into the enterprise. So far, we don’t have many instances of Enterprise social media, but vendors will develop solutions eventually.
For a little help in understanding internal value extraction, watch The Ask:
That’s it for now. I’m going to continue this series in future posts. This is an important issue because unless we get movement in the C-suite and the rest of organizations, patients are the ones who won’t get the benefits they deserve.
@PhilBaumann – @HealthIsSocial – Newsletter