It all began 4 years ago when the founders of Agile Elephant put together an event for Social Media Week in London on the subject of Social Business. At that time the phrase ‘Social Business’ had not yet been coined – the concept of using social tools in the workplace to improve collaboration and enable companies to work in a more efficient and agile way was a very new concept. Social media, social monitoring and social tools were only just beginning to have a serious impact within marketing departments. We called the event the Patchwork Elephant because we recognised that ‘The Elephant in the Ecosystem’ was a huge arena, and that it was hard to get your head around easily and see clearly. It was very much ‘the elephant in the room’ – present, but at that time, being ignored by most.
Since then we have all been working within the social enterprise/business space as it has developed – assisting companies looking to integrate social into their end to end business systems and processes, social media marketing and monitoring, community building and looking to educate leaders about these new ways of working. Our Patchwork Elephant event last year ‘What next for Social Business?’ highlighted just how far Social Business has come in 4 years, but it also made clear how much more there is still to be done.
We decided that as a consultancy our Patchwork Elephant really needed an upgrade to become an Agile Elephant – ‘Agile’ being what companies need to become, ‘Elephant’ as, like business, it’s a pretty big thing to get to shift – but as this amazing photo of a climbing elephant shows if you understand them well enough and get the training right then agility isn’t a problem for either an elephant or a business!
Did you know that elephants have their own communication networks? They make subsonic calls that vibrate the ground, receiving calls through their feet and trunk by monitoring vibrations through the ground. This allows them to triangulate the direction of the elephant making the call by positioning themselves with several points of contact on the ground. It would appear that elephants are quite a bit further ahead of us in this social communication game…