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time and space.
Measuring status and impact of social networks
A new technique Social Network Analysis, pioneeredby anthropologists like Karen Stephenson of UCLA andstudied at over 200 large US corporations, which usesspecialised software focuses on uncovering thepatterning of people’s interaction.
Network analysis is based on the intuitive notion thatthese patterns are important features of the lives of theindividuals who display them. Network analysts believethat how an individual lives depends in large part onhow that individual is tied into the larger web of socialconnections.
It identifies individuals who act as hub, gatekeepers or pulsetakers, people who facilitate the functioning of social networks and whose positions can be leveragedin times of rapid organisational change.
Social network analysis reveals the true workprofile
Through SNA software like NetForm, knowledgenetworks are mapped that uncover interactions withinand across the boundaries of the organisations. Thesevisualisations are like business x-rays of how thingsactually gets done.
The management can use the insights to see itsadaptability, capacity to learn, openness to theenvironment, ability to span boundaries, brittleness of its structure, probability of project success andefficiency of information flow.It can find emergent experts, opinion leaders,bottlenecks, communication breakdowns and learningcommunities. You can see the forest and the trees andhow they are related.
Benefits of understanding and leveraging socialnetworks Knowledge of its social networks can enablethe management to derive several benefits, primarily:
Create an early warning system.
Make sure knowledge gets to people who can act onit in time.
Provide contextual basis for knowledge exchange
Attune everyone in the organisation to each other’sneeds more people will know who knows who knowswhat, and will know it faster.
Multiply intellectual capital by the power of socialcapital, reducing social friction and encouragingsocial cohesion.