I’ve railed before that it isn’t about blogging. It’s about communicating. Classroom blogging affords a unique opportunity to spend less time teaching writing, and more time teaching communication. That said, this article in BusinessWeek Online caught my attention this morning.
Defense contractors and aerospace companies aren’t known for their openness. After all, this is an industry built on security clearances and classified government projects. But today Boeing Co. (BA ) is embracing a kind of management glasnost that would have been unthinkable a few years ago. The evidence? Boeing’s use of blogs. The Chicago aerospace giant — no stranger to recent and well-publicized ethical and political scandals — is among a small but growing group of large non-tech companies such as Walt Disney (DIS ), General Motors (GM ), and McDonald’s (MCD ) that are embracing the power of blogging. That means Boeing has learned to cede some control and expose itself to stinging criticism in exchange for a potentially more constructive dialogue with the public, customers, and employees. “Companies are nervous about creating external blogs because they fear the negative comments,” says Charlene Li, an analyst at Forrester Research Inc. (FORR ). “But negative comments do exist. A company is better off knowing about them.”
Perhaps it is, a bit, about blogging. If conversation is being harnessed by the corporate world, through blogging, then perhaps it is the “B” word is becoming a basic skill. I don’t know. It’s still about communication.