Monday, July 11, 2005

The way to go for Business Social Networking?

This article from CIO - 'Who Knows Whom, And Who Knows What?' - looks at the new ways in which a company's knowledge base can be 'smartened' through innovative use of RFID tagging to form contacts:

At first glance, it looked like your typical networking event. Three hundred research scientists from packaged-food giant Mars gathered in a Las Vegas ballroom last June, wearing name tags and working the floor. But instead of discussing the latest in M&M packaging or pet food nutrition, the scientists were roaming the room like a band of eager salespeople. Their RFID-enabled name tags lit up each time they met someone they didn't know, and their eyes widened as they watched diagrams of their social networks form on giant screens at one end of the ballroom. The diagrams expanded like giant molecules each time a manager spoke with a person new to him or her. To encourage the networking, Mars promised prizes to those with the most contacts or "points." The scientists—a largely introverted group from separate divisions in Los Angeles and New Jersey—were moving in a blur of handshakes, nods and cards changing hands."

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