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Confession: I'm a skeptical user of social media. I don't have a LinkedIn or Facebook account. I still have a Twitter account, but have only logged in once in 2014. So, suffice it to say, when I first re-careered as a Salesforce Consultant and Operations Manager at NiM, I was suspicious about Chatter. "It's like Facebook for Salesforce. Great..."
Two years later, I made it a personal goal to change my stripes -- and made it a departmental goal that all written project collaboration be done through Chatter. (If I was going to use it, then so was every one else, by George!) Seven months later, we're better off for it. Chatter has revolutionized the way we communicate and collaborate at NiM! Here are my top five "wins" from using Chatter for internal communication:
1. We've seen a strong increase in our team spirit. On any given da, in addition to project-related Chatter, you can also find our team members joking around, encouraging each other, making bets on whose email Inbox will be to 0 first, challenging each other to get the best Utilization Rate, sending birthday wishes, and participating in all sorts of Chatter shenanigans. (Note to self: If you give a colleague Login Access, you can expect to have your Chatter profile picture changed!). Chatter is the primary way we build relationships with one another and built our rapport - something that is a perpetual challenge for those working remotely.
2. We've all noted improvement in our ability to manage our Inboxes. Chatter allows us to use email only when necessary and provides a mechanism for timely responses to items that might otherwise get buried in a full Inbox. As an added bonus, gone are the days of needing to search my Archived folders for an email I vaguely remembered getting -- I can simply search the Chatter feed or Chatter topics!
3. We've improved our project documentation significantly through using Chatter to post project notes, Change Log items, files and links to Google Docs.
4. In Using Chatter as a gateway drug to Salesforce, I've seen increasing interest among our "non-Admin/non-Dev" employees in learning more about the power of Salesforce.
5. For times when you need a "just in time" answer, Chatter Messenger can't be beat. We ask our employees to download Chatter Desktop and login when they're available for questions. This provides us with instant access to one another for times when you have a quick question -- or are in a meeting and need to quickly confirm a response! But be warned - sometimes the Chatter conversation can be more interesting than the meeting and if you have a team like mine, they might also try to intentionally distract you!
After seeing the strides in our own communication, collaboration, and team spirit since fully adopting Chatter, Chatter is one of the first aspects of Salesforce that I introduce to clients. I've gone from a reluctant user to seeing Chatter as an invaluable asset for adoption and long-term Salesforce success. Now, about those other social networks. . .
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