The zero email policy isn’t really a policy at all. It’s a fantasy. … The idea that a large organization is eliminating the only means of a communication technology that easily and efficiently enables any user to communicate with anyone else in the organization because of information pollution, is the operational equivalent of abolishing mobile phones because they produce noise pollution. …
The problem with email is that it’s too successful a solution. So successful that people use it for things that it’s not intended for, but use it anyway due to its ease-of-use. As I’ve covered rather extensively, solutions like Yammer, SharePoint, Jive, Socialtext, Salesforce.com, IBM Connections, and SAP Streamworks are fantastic solutions that work with but do not intend to replace email.
The creators of these technologies recognize email for what it is, a simple yet powerful communication tool that is part of an effective social business.
Mark Fidelman really gets emotional in ths posting, where he refers to the Atos ban of e-mail. It is an ongoing discussion since years and my IBM buddy Luis Suarez is for sure somebody, who has driven the discussion very early as the man who is living outside the inbox. November,11 2011 a No E-Mail Day was called out . My friends at IBM Benelux launched a web site Outside the Inbox.
Outside the Inbox: And this is exactly what we need to talk about. Which kind of communciation needs to go through e-mail, because it is the appropriate communication vehicle? Which kind of information should better sit in a social environment, in blogs and wikis to be searchable, findable and – even more important – need to be discussed on? And where is Instant Messaging or – yes it still exists – telephone the better communcation vehicel than e-mail? These questions need to be asked. They need to be allowed.
And if provocative statements and articles need to be written to initiate or drive the discussion, I will always welcome them. Yesterday I was in an interview witrh German Manager Magazin and the journalist asked, if social is going to replace e-mail. And it is absolutely positive that these kind of questions – although the answer is foreseeable – are now being asked, because it kicks of discussion and thinking. There are a lot of use cases where we better leverage Social Software. There are a lot of cases where we better use chat and telephone. And there is going to be a place for e-mail. And there will combinations of features, Social Mail. Let us discuss and teach the audience what to use when.