10 things I do not like about the digital and networked workplace – It continues

By Sebastian Thielke Feb 8, 2016
10 things I do not like about the digital and networked workplace – It continues

Translation of the Original Article by Sebastian Thielke 

So, we rescued ourselves to the second part of griping. And I'm still not finished with my junk lousy mood against this whole networking and digital workplace junk. Where were we again? Oh, yeah, I do not like all of that, because…

And then always these sophistical answers. Nevertheless, I still find a few points that I do not like.

6. Always on the move and no part of the company

Between you and me. What do I do with it. I am always on the move. Onsite with the customer. I have everything important on my laptop. What for do I need a network and the exchange with others? No gain for me.

Mr. Thielke, you should know best what immense significance information, contacts and news have in your daily work. The networked workplace offers just that to you. And you know, that this obviously also works on mobile applications directly on your smartphone. Imagine that the customer has a question and you, together with your company can resolve this question before the eyes of the customer. What an impact, what an innovation.

The mobile, networked and digital workplace offers you the entire knowledge of your company, your colleagues and partners. Your use case is one of the most studied and shows that you benefit the most, because after all it is your ground: Networking, Exchanging and Informing. This is how you sell.


7. Afraid of your own courage

Write something in this network to the entire company? And everyone could read it? Never. They might think that I don’t do anything else. And then my boss. I don’t want to upset anyone with my opinion and ideas. That would not go well.

I understand myself well with this fear. If I am offered something that I could not do before, in an environment that is determined by deep mistrust, then even I hesitate. But you have to start. You have to learn for yourself what an impact open communication, sharing and informing has. Tackling this selfish level is an appropriate way to show you that you do not need to fear. You are helping your company. Have the courage and participate. When you are offered the chance, then the consequences have already been considered.

One way to dissolve precisely this fear is to use the method Working out Loud. The individual persons and employees learn - closed off for themselves in a familiar circle - where the advantages of the network, of sharing and of communicating are. You pass on your findings after a specified time and infect your colleagues. In addition, you are encouraged to design your work openly on the network. The fear will disappear. I am happy to help you here, Mr. Thielke. Let us design the first circle in your company with four of your colleagues.

8. Modern methods and the constant reinvention of Management

This whole jumble of collaboration, agile, leadership, innovation and working independently. I prefer to speak directly with my colleagues. The network is just a fashion, like all the other new and newly invented methods for management. All too far away from practical management.

Hmm. I might need to give you a little orientation, Mr. Thielke. It would be wrong to view all the aspects singularly. In a large part, the new methods and tools build upon each other. The network and the possibility of visibility and common communication is here an important part. No one will demand that good experiences with specific and applied methods are suspended with the digital workplace.

The point of view should be in the supplements here. Try to see it this way. You have the chance to exchange more often with your employees and it is easier to get an overview of projects and challenges. Above all, you can enliven this workplace with your methods by good example. Of course, the investment to learn something new is essential. Management and leadership in such networks is a constant component and an immanent tool for success during the accompanied transformation of the company and the digital workplace.


9. Independent work? With us? No way.

Independent work? Maybe even autonomously? Then I could have become self-employed with my intelligent paper. I don’t have the ability to make decisions or implement something here. That even scares me. What should I do with the responsibility? Why should I get involved now? This is nonsense and not a reality for us employees.

There is much fear in this discomfort and too little knowledge about the meaning and purpose. Certain terms were used, but what was meant as progressive, comes across as an obstacle. I fully understand your concerns Mr. Thielke. Today we are accustomed to a work environment that controls us and if necessary intervenes regulating. We do not make decisions ourselves; we leave that to the decision makers. That is easy and comfortable. However, this is not a networked and progressive world works anymore. Decisions and actions need to be handled quickly and directly at the source of the cause.

You will not be burdened the entire business. You should take responsibility for your role. And you can, because that's your job. The network offers the opportunity to do exactly these quick decisions transparent and comprehensible. You have the possibility to secure a decision-making basis through information and search. The networked workplace is the way to enable the independent action. You should not be afraid of this step, because it empowers you in your role. You are the expert in your job.


10. I have had enough of Social

I’m fed up up with all this Together, Social and Collaboration. Why should I do my work on Facebook or Twitter? You can see that people are distracted there or even completely fall out of character. We already have enough Gossip and rumors. Without cat pictures and appointments for Sport.

A very difficult subject. For real. The term Social is somewhat burnt out. Everybody is Social. Everybody does Collaboration, even in the digital Transformation. What you really should be understood here, is the fact that we are talking about mechanisms that function like in the social media such as Facebook and Twitter, but by no means have the content or the objectives of the same. Your digital and networked workplace Mr. Thielke should be productive for you, your colleagues and the company. Of course, it is also important that you include the interpersonal level. It is a success factor for the acceptance of such innovations. It creates the familiar in the New. Nevertheless, it must be clear here that you are still working. And each person is capable of this perception and assessment. If we now further support by orientation, assistance and practical examples, then there is no need to speak of social or collaboration, but we can say that the company offers its employees a digital and networked workstation, which offers many advantages over traditional communication and collaboration media.


Mr. Thielke, it must be our common goal that we know, understand and help to deal with the fears, annoyances and worries of the employees in every situation.

  • Listen to the fears and take them seriously
  • Design your use cases with the employees and along their worries
  • Do not try to make it right for everyone, because that will fail.
  • Not everyone will be able to and want to work with this networked workstation
  • Create positive experiences and connect at the reality of the employees
  • Understand the concerns and do not overlook them

Then I can say, I do like it somehow. This digital workplace, this networking. Thank you for listening to me, Mr Thielke.

About the author

Sebastian Thielke Consultant Digital Transformation
Social Business and Enterprise 2.0 - Strategy Development, Enablement, Communications and Value added with the main focus on: People form the company.

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