I am sure you have all heard the refrain of the title from when you were a child or from your own children: “So! Well so what!” My dad would always add the last part.
Well, so? Well what about SoE? Systems of Engagement. SoE, is part of the Social Computing wave. Today I woke up to both my daughter's and my niece’s "Facebook Movie.” Tears came to my eyes as both of these young women chronicled precious moments: Engagements, weddings, and births.
Facebook has tapped into an emotional connection through pictures on the internet engaging us in the “now.” The movies they shared struck me with their immediacy as well as intimacy. When we reveal ourselves through these kinds of personal artifacts, we allow others to participate with us on a human level outside of traditional voice or text communication. This “System of Engagement” is more personal than an email or a text message.
If you will; recall for a moment how you felt, when you received that card or note, handwritten from a loved one or from a respected colleague? When I receive a Facebook invite, I feel less connected as opposed to the hand written one. Yet I contradict myself with the pictures. So why are pictures “more engaging” than electronic invites, which are less so, than personal hand-written notes?
The answer is simple: We engage when our senses are triggered. The picture of my grandson and the wedding of my daughter, both cause memories to stir. In turn, the physiological release of brain chemicals, stimulate further, still other pictures in my mind. Memories of songs, and yes, even the smell of fresh baked bread comes to my mind. This is engagement.
SoE… How do we, in our professional lives, create and use Systems of Engagement to interact with colleagues and customers, such that they will choose to work with use more closely? Our social media outlets: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, developerWorks, etc. all provide avenues for us to engage. The use of full profile information, pictures (that are complimentary and business appropriate), personal anecdotes (again appropriate), and business/ technical insights all help us to engage at a human level in our computing world.
So share with me some of your personal stories, as I have done with you, and we can all connect a little deeper and, we can, as the inimitable Capt. Jean-Luc Picard from Star Trek - Next Generation would say; “Engage!”