On Tuesday, we hosted our Social Media Week Party together with our friends from Somewhere. The aim was to party with a purpose – to help rediscover the empowering potential and pioneering spirit of social media and social technology through some off-the-cuff lightning talks.

Thanks to all the new and familiar faces who showed up – it was a real pleasure to see conversations spark across the room. Also, a special thanks to the brave volunteers, who shared their thoughts, musings and rants on the subject of social media at the event. The audience was introduced to a number of first-hand experiences with how social media has benefited large organisation, along with barriers that people in organisations face, when driving organisational change through social networking. In summary, the talks highlighted both potential and inherent challenges the future of social media.

In short we have made a brief description of each talk and details on the speakers:

  1. Cerys Hearsey talked about the position of social media teams as gatherers of strategically valuable information at the edges of the organisation (@CerysHearsey)
  2. Peter Sorgenfrei talked about how social media has encouraged broader conversation including more intimate details about the nature of work connecting professional like-minds (@psorgenfrei)
  3. Luis Suarez discussed with us how employee engagement is still a major issue for most organisations and one that impacts productivity and profits (@elsua)
  4. Matt Partovi talked about how organisations need to be more responsive and shared some of his experiences from Yammer and Culturevist (@matthewpartovi)
  5. Jemima Gibbons challenged the new approaches rolled out by Social Media Week this year and used that as a microcosm to illustrate what is right and wrong with social media in general (@JemimaG)
  6. Anne McCrossan observed that social media has introduced a fundamental change in giving everyone a voice, which presents us with a multitude of possibilities to explore (@Annemcx)
  7. Tim McLoughlin shared a highly interesting case study of how social media strategy has had great organisational impact for one of his clients at Saatchi & Saatchi (@timmymc)
  8. John Greenshields shared his experiences at Camden Council on the potential of social media to service citizens (@shieldsofgreen)
  9. Leon Benjamin shared some thoughts on how social can change the role of leadership and flatten the organisation, and highlighted that people’s commitment is instrumental for it to happen (@lfbenjamin)