Harvard Business Review Press
September 14, 2010
You know it’s happening within your organization. Your people – using low-cost, accessible technology – are connecting with customers and building innovative new solutions. But who are these creative problem solvers? How can you lead them? How can you be one?
We call them HEROes: highly empowered and resourceful operatives. Your company needs them, because in the age of Twitter, iPhones, Facebook, YouTube, and an ever-evolving torrent of Web information, your customers now step up to the counter armed with more data and access than ever before – often overmatching your team.
In Empowered, Forrester’s Josh Bernoff – co-author of the pioneering book Groundswell – and Ted Schadler explain how to transform your company by unleashing the force of the HEROes. Like John Bernier and Ben Hedrington at Best Buy, who built an army of twenty-five hundred tweeting employees to reach out to customers online. Or John Stadick, who equipped six hundred sales staffers with iPhones and boosted profits at his construction rental company
The truth is, a third of your information workers already use, commonly available technologies that your company does not sanction. Empowered gives you a prescription for embracing this covert innovation. At the heart of a HERO-powered business is a new pact between these employees, company managers, and IT: HEROes build new solutions to meet customer needs, management sets clear rules while encouraging experimentation, and IT expands its role to both support and secure these business solutions.
Fuelled by data from Forrester Research, Empowered is packed with the business tools and information necessary to move your organization several steps ahead of the competition:
- Statistical analysis of the 16 percent of customers who account for 80 percent of online influence
- The HERO index: a scorecard of the industries and departments with the most – and the fewest – HEROes
- The game plan for IT’s new role as a key partner in technology empowerment throughout the company
- Dozens of case studies and examples from firms in every industry, from retail to business services
With an arsenal of valuable new technologies, your employees are already transforming the way you do business. You can lead them or block them – it’s your choice. Empowered will help you make the right decision.
Josh Bernoff is co-author of the BusinessWeek bestseller Groundswell, the “best book ever written on marketing and media” (Advertising Age). He is Senior Vice President, Idea Development, at Forrester Research.
Ted Schadler is a Vice President and Principal Analyst in Forrester’s IT Research Group. His work over thirteen years at Forrester has focused on disruptive technologies and how senior decision makers should harness them.