June 23 2014
Earlier today, it was announced internally at IBM that I have taken on a new role. I am moving into our corporate organization as Vice President, Social Business Transformation. In this position, my team and I are responsible for advancing IBM's maturity as a social business, and continuing the development of a culture of participation.
My predecessor in this role, Bethann Cregg, has left some pretty large shoes to fill. Several programs and tools are in place in IBM today to help our employees reach the right experts, engage more directly with our clients, and convert knowledge into action. IBM is viewed by many as a benchmark for organizational change, presenting an exciting yet challenging opportunity. My goal is to move us ahead quickly on the maturity curve--from social business foundations to an environment where use of social business principles and tools becomes part of the daily fabric of the company, at all levels and job functions.
The last 18 months have been a period of fantastic growth and development as marketing director for IBM MobileFirst. Building IBM's position in the mobile enterprise market from a small collection of products and services into an integrated, market-leading solutions portfolio has been successful for the company, and also personally rewarding. I am eternally grateful to Kristen Lauria for bringing me into the marketing organization and having the confidence that my previous experience would translate into this success. Moving on today is the first time in 20 years at IBM that I feel like I am leaving a job in some ways unfinished -- having just hired the last addition to my team. While we have accomplished much together, there is still more to be done around creating mindshare for IBM, integrated solution portfolios, and developing an ecosystem around IBM's mobile technologies. I am very proud of the team that I am leaving behind, many of them friends as well as colleagues, and hope that they will continue on the road to market dominance.
Though I am just getting started, several aspects of my new role are particularly exciting. Clearly, I am coming back to my roots, in a job that is all about helping people collaborate. My calendar is already filling up with external speaking engagements, opportunities to demonstrate that a social business is about more than canned tweets and having a Facebook page. This is also my first role that has company-wide responsibility within IBM, and I am looking forward to learning more about the various divisions, functions, and geographies I've never encountered before. Many of the people I will be working with in this position have likewise been pioneers or early adopters of social business tools -- some of them coming out of Lotus heritage like me. It is good to have a team with shared ideals and objectives from the start.
Unsurprisingly, I expect to increase activity here on my blog and other social channels. I'm not sure you'll see me donning a yellow sweater, but the uniform seems familiar. I won't be pitching a product or service, but clearly it is important for IBM's own story to continue to surface externally. I expect to be connecting/reconnecting with many of the IBM social thought leaders out here in the open, as well as many of you as clients or partners. I look forward to your participation, and thank you for your support.
One other point to note: Timing is everything. Just a few weeks from now, I will be part of an IBM Smarter Cities Challenge team in Tainan, Taiwan. This three week assignment is an exciting opportunity to contribute to a real-world municipal problem as part of a volunteer team of IBM experts. It's going to be a busy summer, and I hope you'll stay tuned in here, on Twitter, the Smarter Cities Challenge blog, and for IBMers on my internal profile and blog as well.