Life will never be the same again! I remember the day in the last century when I purchased my first mobile phone so I could continue the conversations with my clients while I was stuck in one of many traffic jams in The Netherlands. I also remember that most of my consultancy clients didn’t have email addresses, although there was inter-company electronic mail and those big yellow internal mail envelopes for paper memos etc. To connect with clients you used the phone or fax.
fast forward to 2009:
Our current clients have email addresses, a skypeID, google chat, twitter accounts, a facebook or myspace page, a google Wave account and everybody always talks on their mobile computer (isn’t it amazing that the Apple iPhone has this cool apps that you can download so you can even make phone calls with it?)
So what did I do? Over the past few months I have been more and more active with social media for The Art of Service. For one reason: we want to continue to create long-lasting relationship with our clients and course participants.
For me this is natural and logical: Our clients discuss important and urgent issues on twitter and facebook (as well as the not so important but still urgent), so where are there to answer their questions and to engage in the conversation.
So how has the interaction changed?
- I have my own twitter account www.twitter.com/ivankamenken . I use this account to share my research findings, ideas, comments and general communication around IT Service Management, ITIL, Cloud Computing, Business Management and personal ‘stuff’
- Because not everybody is interested in my thoughts and rants, I also create a corporate twitter account to discuss our events, programs, products and generic information. www.twitter.com/taos_events
- I started promoting my mobile phone number on my business card and email signature again to encourage clients to speak with me directly, rather than going through my PA.
- I have a personal SkypeID, and the company has a corporate SkypeID so nobody has to feel they can’t connect with a client at the other end of the world
- The Art of Service has a corporate blog, posts ideas and links on posterous
- We encourage people to send in their questions and requests for help via the forms on our websites
- and of course there are the multiple of RSS feeds, Digg and delicious bookmarks, the hyves and Linkedin profiles
So when I look back at my first years as an ITIL and ITSM practitioner and compare it with the current situation – I would say that social media is a must for every ITIL and ITSM consultant or practitioner who wants to stay connected with the industry, their clients, peers and colleagues.
The way we did business 20 or 30 years ago doesn’t work (as well) anymore, we can’t stop growing… if you don’t use social media yet… change, and embrace it!