How ‘social intelligence’ can guide decisions

The November issue of the McKinsey Quarterly contains an article with an interesting perspective on how social media can/has/will affect the intelligence cycle:

“In this article, we explore four distinct ways social technologies can augment the intelligence-gathering approaches of companies. As Exhibit 1 makes clear, social media has little effect on some aspects of the intelligence cycle—in particular, the need to identify priorities for exploration and decision making over the next 6 to 12 months, as well as the use of assembled information to make unbiased decisions. But social technologies can play a surprisingly central role in how information is sourced, collected, analyzed, and distributed.”

Each of the figures in the article are worth looking at: figure 1, “social media is changing the old-school intelligence cycle” contains a different perspective on how to execute the traditional elements of the intelligence cycle; and figure 2, “an explosion of new analytical tools gives companies new ways to tap expertise,” shows how standard business analysis techniques can be supplemented or even replaced by social media based tools.

Additionally, the authors conclude that effective application of social media will significantly change the role and responsibilities of intelligence practitioners, and diffuse intelligence across the company:

“The information that companies need to meet competitive challenges is moving quickly from published and proprietary sources to the open, chaotic world of social platforms. Navigating this new environment effectively will require new skills and a willingness to engage in social conversations rather than merely assemble information. This is a mission that should extend across the organization.”

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About SCIP News
The Strategic and Competitive Intelligence Professionals (SCIP), formerly the Society of Competitive Intelligence Professionals, is a global nonprofit membership organization for everyone involved in creating and managing business knowledge. Our mission is to enhance the success of our members through leadership, education, advocacy, and networking. Specifically, SCIP provides education and networking opportunities for business professionals working in the rapidly growing field of competitive intelligence (the legal and ethical collection and analysis of information regarding the capabilities, vulnerabilities, and intentions of business competitors). Many SCIP members have backgrounds in market research, strategic analysis, or science and technology. Established in 1986, today SCIP has chapters around the world, with individual members in nations around the globe. In addition, SCIP has alliance partnerships with independent affiliate organizations in many countries.

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