How to Continue to Innovate with Fewer “Water Cooler” Conversations
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Kuzdeba, Nicole DeMarco
[Excerpt] As companies continue to grow globally, learning how to innovate across geographic lines has become even more important as “water cooler” conversations become less of the norm. This challenge is even more pertinent for the tech industry, where innovation is at its core. I sought to answer the following question: As tech companies continue to expand globally and open offices in more locations, the employee population becomes more decentralized, resulting in fewer organic, “water cooler” conversations. These “water cooler” conversations, or unintentional run-ins with one another which typically result in work conversation, can lead to innovative thinking or ideas. As companies expand globally, teams grow across various sites and more employees work at remote sites (not at the company’s headquarters), fewer of these organic conversations occur. So how can we continue to innovate without these “water cooler” conversations?
HR Review; globalization; communication challenges; innovation; knowledge creation; social networks
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