Gartner analyst Tom Austin has been on the road finding out what makes enterprise social and collaborative projects succeed. He's boiled it down to ten particular success factors. Defining success (and agreeing upon that definition), working with people in across silos and with different skill levels, and being well aware of the starting conditions are key. Have you lead a successful social or collaborative deployment? What factors were important?

  • Define what constitutes success.
  • Reach an agreement with the business regarding the criteria for evaluating success.
  • Study existing work patterns and improve on the best cases first. Save the worst cases for later.
  • "Ignore siren call of infrastructure merchants."
  • Learn to work within the restraints of the organizational culture.
  • Remember that the new has to be ten times better to displace the old.
  • Build for a variety of skill levels, not just experts.
  • Remember that users will use outside tools if you make yours too difficult.
  • Embrace minimalism.
  • Be organizationally inclusive. Involve legal, operations, security, and other departments early in the process.

You can read Austin's whole post here. I'd also recommend checking out our articles 5 Principles for Improving Social Enterprise Adoption and Enterprise 2.0 Adoption: Does It Have To Be So Hard? for more insights.