Tuesday, January 22, 2008

McAfee v. Davenport: The Debate

I found this article at PC World reviewing the much anticipated debate between Andrew McAfee and Tom Davenport. They came together last week to have a debate on the topic of enterprise 2.0.

Both of these men, both professors at high standing business schools, McAfee at Harvard and Davenport at Boston College, came together to debate the influences that Enterprise 2.0 has.

Surprisingly, both men have very different ideas about Enterprise 2.0. Davenport believes that most of what can be done with new enterprise 2.0 tools could have been done with previous applications such as Lotus Notes. The fact that these tools have not changed the business environment also contributes to why Davenport feels that this “enterprise 2.0” assumption is too dramatic.

McAfee’s view is very different. Although he never viewed Enterprise 2.0 as a way for companies to sweep into a new era of management, the new applications are tools for making enterprise 2.0 much easier and it is also better software.

Then the debate turned to the cultural part of the enterprises. As we have seen before in this blog, both debaters were concerned with management having reluctance to adapt this new technology into their companies. One of the last topics as that enterprise 2.0 is not suited for every company. Blogging is not for every company, and Davenport pointed out that blogging will never replace the face-to-face communication that makes a company keep going. McAfee agreed, but pointed out that internal blogging is a good way of knowing everything that is going on in the company.

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