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We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

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Big Think’s contributors offer expert analysis of the big ideas behind the news.

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Social Media Are Essential to Business Growth

June 12, 2012, 8:12 AM
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What's the Latest Development?

A new survey of business professionals across Europe shows how important social media have become at innovating within companies. Of the survey's 2,700 professionals across France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and the UK, "...a huge proportion of high-growth businesses (81%) are using social tools to facilitate expansion and improve the ways in which teams collaborate and share knowledge." And while social media are typically considered tools for younger generations, the data indicate that "those in senior roles actually use them far more regularly than their more junior colleagues."

What's the Big Idea?

"Three-quarters of senior executives surveyed said that social tools will change business strategy, stating that they had already been able to improve the following aspects of their business - bringing together ideas and thoughts from a geographically dispersed team (79%), productivity (76%) and the ability to find information, people and expertise more quickly (72%)." To be sure, social media are not a panacea for better business, but because they represent a cultural change in how we communicate, rather than just another technological change, companies ignore social media at their own peril. 

Photo credit: Shutterstock.com

 

 

Social Media Are Essential ...

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