Organization follows Technology LO13538

Stever Robbins (
Wed, 07 May 1997 22:31:04 -0400

Replying to LO13521 --

At 08:46 am 5/7/97 -0500, you wrote:
>Stever wrote
>>My claim is that finding commentary that one can appreciate doesn't
>>constitute a compelling business justification for using the Internet as
>>a management tool.

>subscribing to a 'net list ... there's just no telling what you're
>likely to hear -- or when it might prove useful.

>Of course, I can't spend all of my time riding elevators, either!

And for me, it's this last sentence that's the crux of the matter. Don't
get me wrong! I have lived and breathed the Internet for 20 years, this
September. But for a manager who hasn't, the internet access business
equation is:

+ the benefit of contacts, information, etc. found on the net
- cost of any incremental upgrades they need to be able to run
(e.g. Netscape 3.0)
- cost of connection (often companies elect for T1)
- cost of administrator for network
- direct cost of that manager's time wasted on the Net
- opportunity cost of the time spent on the net [because useful or not,
time spent on the net is time that ISN'T being spent on other things
in the organization]

Does the connection produce much value for the average manager? Dunno.

I've made some great contacts on the net, but if I spent 4 hours a week
(45 minutes/day) reading and participating in newsgroups, that's 10% of my
time. Is that a good use for 10% of my time? Probably not. Can I hope
to find stuff of value in "browse mode," spending *less* than 45 minutes
per day? I'd be hard pressed to claim I could.

Consultants probably get more bang for their buck, since participating in
newsgroups probably leads to some good lead generation. But for a line
manager in a company that's getting a product or service out the door?
I'm not so sure...

Of course, I could be wrong.

- Stever

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