<a href="http://beyondbridges.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Unified-Inbox-to-buy-cloud-solution-Smak-for-LifeModes-integration.jpg"><img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-4923" src="http://beyondbridges.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Unified-Inbox-to-buy-cloud-solution-Smak-for-LifeModes-integration-150x150.jpg" alt="Unified-Inbox-to-buy-cloud-solution-Smak-for-LifeModes-integration" width="150" height="150" /></a>Anyone else remember the idea of the ‘unified inbox’ ? I am talking waaaay back in the day when we ‘wanted’ voice mail, texts and emails all to appear in one place ? It never happened. In fact it is worse. We now have an explosion of message mechanisms and apps - to which we need to add the balkanization of those streams and walled gardens adding to the complexity. With that challenge we all have our own favorites which means no matter how good our own particular favorite is - we are never going to get all our friends onto the same engine - because they have theirs. (You love Skype, I love FaceTime, my brother lives in Google).

And then I thought – I wonder if these guys might solve it ?

Doubt it – certainly while the likes of Facebook insist on a walled garden approach.

So yes – we have a unified EMAIL Inbox, but we have IMs, Twitter DMs and Facebook and What’sApp, WeChat, iMessage, SMS, MMS …. and then voice …. and then video ….

Meanwhile on my Apple Mac – I used to use Adium for a single IM app – it was perfect – but I stopped that maybe 2 years ago … so what changed there ? Maybe when they added Twitter  and FB — way too many interrupts !!! And that is just what we face as individuals – the enterprise issues are orders of magnitude more complex.

Upside ? What a GREAT opportunity … for the Enterprise.

A single ‘app’ that an enterprise can use that can connect to voice, IM, Social, Message, SMS, MMS….. in a unified inbox – so if i call today, email tomorrow about the message I texted last week to ‘said enterprise’ – it is all in a threaded conversation that the enterprise’s customer contact center can use to understand the full context of MY request.

Because at the end of the day – if it really IS about the customer – then we. the people (customer is what a ‘brand’ calls us), should use the channel that is right and appropriate for them at the time they use it. And we should not have to keep repeating ourselves (I’m talking to you Comcast) .. and absolutely not be forced into using the comms center that is convenient for the enterprise.

Who’s going to hold their breath with me ?


I belong to an email discussion group called Only Influencers - which you can join - but if email is not a major interest / passion - you can also experience some of the expertise for free here. Bear with us, it is a new space on Reddit - so as I write - just getting going. 

This post was inspired by one of the debates on that discussion thread, which I decided was one to throw out into the wider world. Special thanks to Craig Swerdloff, Loren T. McDonald, Karen Talavera and Derek Harding for the reminder and inspiration - though they might not know that they did.

            <a href="http://beyondbridges.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/TSA.png"><img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-3776" src="http://beyondbridges.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/TSA-150x150.png" alt="TSA" width="150" height="150" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/01/tsa-fails-95-percent-tests-homeland-security_n_7485558.html">TSA Fails 95 Percent Of Airport Security Tests Conducted By Homeland Security</a>


Someone once described Innovation as the practical application of Creativity. I am not sure that this is the only definition, but for me it resonates. A good friend of mine ( wrote a book) that discussed the nature of innovation. He unearthed several different classes of innovation that may or may not be appropriate to an organization. Creativity – they say – is going to be our salvation. Creativity – they say – is going to save America – save the Western World – Save Capitalism – Save the World. It’s a big ask. Why – because Creativity – even of itself does nothing.

Twenty-Five Years ago I wrote and presented to a large US Defence Contractor as to the role of Creativity in the Communications Process. The central theme was that ‘Creativity’ – without application is wonderful – it should never stop – BUT – unless it is harnessed and applied then it will do nothing for us.

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            <strong><a href="http://beyondbridges.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/unused-words-logo-for-web.png"><img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-3590" src="http://beyondbridges.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/unused-words-logo-for-web-150x150.png" alt="Unused Words" width="150" height="150" /></a>Just submitted a couple of articles to the big wide world - and these words ended up on the 'cutting room floor'. Wanted to keep them for posterity. Pertinent.</strong>

For an organization to wonder who owns a process (even a process that is a misnomer) reflects on the never-ending problems that organizations have – the silos. Look into your own organization, your customers, your vendors – and ‘dollar to a donut’ you will quickly find teams where ‘social’, ‘web’, ’email’, ‘events’, ‘sales’, ‘support’, ‘accounts’ …. are teams in different groups – with different objectives, goals and even reporting lines.

No wonder our customers are confused.

Silos exist because the ‘command and control’ mentality remains strong in the enterprise. Until that is broken, customer centricity will remain at best a veneer and at worst – organizational death.

As for social sales – to me – it is the same as it ever was, barring the intermediate 100 years or so while the sales process has been industrialized. It is not new – it is what sales should be but we just lost our way. Just as we are discovering that industrializing our food chain was maybe not the best idea, or that applying manufacturing processes to our children’s education was ill conceived, so too we are needing to relearn that selling is about relationships and adding value.

            <strong><a href="http://beyondbridges.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Passion.jpeg"><img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-3553" src="http://beyondbridges.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Passion-150x150.jpeg" alt="Passion" width="150" height="150" /></a>Stackridge - Korgis - Beck - Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind</strong>

One Degree of Seperation :

Back in the day I was a massive fan of a band that few have heard of today called Stackridge. They really were more one of the underrated bands of the time. Read About Their History Here. I got reminded and reconnected with them this past week – and EVERY bit as good as I remember them.

Two Degrees of Seperation :

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            <a href="http://beyondbridges.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/little-boxes.jpg"><img class=" size-medium wp-image-3350 aligncenter" src="http://beyondbridges.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/little-boxes-194x300.jpg" alt="little boxes" width="194" height="300" /></a>

By the numbers there’s my driver’s license,
car registration, license plate, zip code,
various accounts, street address, birthdate
home, work, and cell phones, passport, credit cards
debit cards, PINs, social security
frequent fliers, internet passwords, stocks
checking, HMO, IRA, museums
library card, land and enneagram.
I know its a lot to remember, but
thank god i finally know who I am.

… not my words – but if you want to read them by the author (Jim Woesnner) – and a LOT more of spot on social commentary – look no further than here. Brilliant stuff.

He had me at

I’m doing research on alien life, so I thought I’d start in America.