Second Life: The Business Case for HR


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Presentation from a panel discussion on the business case for HR in the virtual world at a Human Resources seminar in Boston in January 2009. Panelists were from Duke CE, Duke, IBM, and the Stockholm School of Economics. Please note that part of the panel discussion included a tour to various places in SL.

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  • Second Life: The Business Case for HR

    1. 1. Second Life: The Business Case for HR in the Virtual World
    2. 2.
    3. 3. Should I be worried about it? Should MY organization be there? Why would we?? What IS this?? Is it a game?? Who ARE these people that spend their time and MONEY there – and what the heck do they DO there? How is it different than MySpace or Facebook? Should I let my kids be on it? Should I let my EMPLOYEES use it? Isn’t it just a big WASTE of time? I heard someone made $1M in Second Life…say it isn’t so? Is it SAFE? Is it secure?
    4. 4. Sources: Business Week April 2006, The Economist. Living a Second Life, Sept. 28, 2006 Second Life is some unholy offspring of the movie The Matrix , the social networking site MySpace and the online marketplace eBay.
    5. 5. <ul><li>Tony O’Driscoll, aka </li></ul><ul><li>Wada Tripp </li></ul><ul><li>Duke University </li></ul><ul><li>Professor of the Practice, Fuqua School of Business </li></ul>
    6. 6. Source: Joe Miller. Linden Lab All Data: (Industry, Job Level, Company Size, # Learners Impacted) <ul><li>16 Million Members </li></ul><ul><li>1.1 Million Active Residents </li></ul><ul><li>350,000 Hours of Use Per Day </li></ul><ul><li>87,500 Hours Development Time/Day </li></ul><ul><li>$1.6 B worth of Free Work per Year </li></ul><ul><li>163 Virtual Square Miles (5X Boston) </li></ul><ul><li>520,000 Unique Items traded/Month </li></ul>Clearly if social activity migrates to synthetic worlds, economic activity will go there as well. Castranova
    7. 7. <ul><li>81% of the business population age 34 or younger are gamers </li></ul><ul><li>56 million are old enough to be employees </li></ul><ul><li>7 million are already managers in the current workforce </li></ul>Sources: Merrill Lynch 1999, Beck and Wade, Got Game., Prensky, Digital Game Based Learning Digital Immigrants Digital Natives The new generation is huge, 90 million people in the US alone. Already there are more of them around than there are baby boomers. Beck and Wade
    8. 8.
    9. 9. Source: e-Learning Guild
    10. 10. By the end of 2011, 80 percent of active Internet users (and Fortune 500 enterprises) will have a “second life”, but not necessarily in Second Life, Steve Prentice Gartner Source: Gartner Consulting, IBM EBO
    11. 11. <ul><li>Dr. Robin Teigland, aka </li></ul><ul><li>Karinda Rhode </li></ul><ul><li>Stockholm School of Economics </li></ul><ul><li>Associate Professor </li></ul>Photo: Henry Lundholm , Metro
    12. 12. What companies are striving for… Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower. - Steve Jobs, Apple Our competitive advantage is our ability to attract talented people to collaborate and innovate together . - Aleksander Farstad, eZ Systems The goal is to always build a diverse group of people – good decisions are a result of diverse people coming together examining every point of view in a deliberate process and then making a decision. - Carly Fiorina The rate at which individuals and organizations learn may become the only sustainable competitive advantage , especially in knowledge-intensive industries. - Ray Stata, Analog Devices
    13. 13. While we know what to do…. Network picture from Hierarchy Linear, static, process-based organization Heterarchy Dynamic, integrated collaboration networks … .getting there is hard to do!!
    14. 14. Communication still occurs primarily within formal silos Stockholm London Brussels Helsinki Madrid Copenhagen Teigland 2003 San Francisco
    15. 15. Creativity and innovation come from individuals spanning diverse networks Firm A High creative Low on-time High on-time Low creative Teigland 2003 High creative Virtual community Firm B
    16. 16. Two employees with the same number of contacts… B A
    17. 17. … but with very different access to resources B A
    18. 18. The challenge! <ul><li>When people are more than 50 feet apart, the likelihood of them collaborating more than once a week is less than 10%. </li></ul><ul><li>Our networks tend to be homogeneous – we tend to develop relations with people like ourselves. </li></ul><ul><li>The higher the diversity of team members, the higher the potential for conflict and poor results. </li></ul><ul><li>Our biggest challenge! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Enabling our employees to live up to our motto of “share your information” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>With people at 9 different locations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>From 22 different nationalities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>CEO, eZ Software (open source content management ) </li></ul></ul>Allen 1984, Burt 1992, Marsden 1987, Ruuska & Teigland 2003
    19. 19. VWs help overcome these challenges Unilever uses SL to bring together individuals working with Dove across the world <ul><li>Finding and connecting with people </li></ul><ul><li>Building communities </li></ul><ul><li>Sharing information and knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Solving problems and finding solutions </li></ul><ul><li>Learning informally </li></ul><ul><li>Overcoming diversity challenges through creating collective competence </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Shared understanding </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Shared language, norms </li></ul></ul>
    20. 20. External networks are growing in importance! Other people around the world Other employes around the world Other employees in your country Co-Workers Friends Large portion of new ideas and formal collaboration relationships come from external contacts You Alex Eyal Your manager Rami’s manager Hila Yaron Yuval Eduardo Ed Muriel Peter Frequent e-mails Infrequent e-mails Web 2.0 Collaboration
    21. 21. China is making big efforts in Virtual Worlds! <ul><li>A “virtual economy district – a world where millions will work, communicate, and be in love” </li></ul><ul><li>Reaching out to the 150 mln overseas Chinese </li></ul><ul><li>7 million inworld at same time </li></ul><ul><li>Five virtual banking licenses </li></ul><ul><li>auctioned for $404,000 </li></ul>, “ The real China is only a piece of land. We believe that there must be a China in the virtual world and the real world.” Robert Lai, Chief Scientist, CRD
    22. 22. HSB is creating tomorrow’s solution while attracting employees and customers today Building the house of the future in a competition with architecture students HSB: One of Sweden’s largest real estate management companies
    23. 23. So, what does all this mean? <ul><li>Organizations have to develop their networks globally - both inside and out </li></ul><ul><li>Organizations have to leverage social media </li></ul><ul><ul><li>To win the war for talent </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To innovate for competitive advantage </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Organizations have to cultivate an open, knowledge sharing culture </li></ul>I f you love knowledge, set it free …
    24. 24. <ul><li>Chuck Hamilton, aka </li></ul><ul><li>Longg Weeks </li></ul><ul><li>IBM </li></ul><ul><li>Learning and New Media Program Manager - IBM 3D Internet Team </li></ul>
    25. 25. Convergence In Virtual Spaces mentoring Green Data Center SOA Training Play is how we principally learn and principally create &quot; Ray Kurzweil many to choose from IBM Lotus Tools BMW Training Media Brain Thinking
    26. 26. Application across IBM’s HCM Lifecycle <ul><li>Second Life Recruiting Center – Themed Zones, Education and Meeting Spaces, etc </li></ul><ul><li>3DI On-boarding and Orientation </li></ul><ul><li>3DI Learning Experience Spaces in Multiple Environments </li></ul><ul><li>3DI Business Rehearsal and Testing </li></ul><ul><li>3DI Virtual Career Portal </li></ul><ul><li>Virtual Workplace for Employees </li></ul><ul><li>Virtual Workplace for Employees </li></ul><ul><li>Career – Fast Forward Zone Meeting Space </li></ul><ul><li>Expertise and Event Collaboration </li></ul>
    27. 27.
    28. 28.
    29. 29. At your tables… <ul><li>What potential applications of this technology do you see within your organization? What might it replace? What might it add that you don’t have now? </li></ul><ul><li>What obstacles do you see to venturing into this space? </li></ul><ul><li>What questions does this raise for you as you think about your job in 5 years’ time? What other questions do you have for our presenters? </li></ul>
    30. 30. Take 20 minute break … and come back for the panel
    31. 31. <ul><li>Steve Mahaley, Director of Learning Technology, Duke Corporate Education </li></ul><ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ace Carson in SL </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Tony O’Driscoll, Professor of the Practice, Fuqua School of Business, Duke University </li></ul><ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wada Tripp in SL </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Robin Teigland, Associate Professor, Stockholm School of Economics </li></ul><ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Karinda Rhode in SL </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Chuck Hamilton, Learning and New Media Program Manager - IBM 3D Internet Team </li></ul><ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Longg Weeks in SL </li></ul></ul>Thank You!