Skip navigation

It's been a while since our last interview... but I'm excited to present our first How I Work interview in JiveWorks! Brennan Kirby hails from Canada, working for TemboSocial - which happens to be one of our treasured partners! When he isn't traveling the world, he is traveling around the US. As an outdoor person myself, we ended up chatting for an hour on Skype exchanging travel stories and how we ended up where we are in our career. It was really great getting to know Brennan Kirby, and I hope you enjoy getting to know him too!


Where do you work?

I work at TemboSocial, a Toronto-based enterprise software company offering Jive Add-Ons that enable advanced survey/form/poll, employee recognition and ideation capabilities in internal and external communities.











How would you describe your current job?

I’m responsible for Business Development at [ARCHIVE] TemboSocial and I spend my days meeting with prospects and clients to understand their community use cases/objectives and present TemboSocial's Add-Ons that leverage Jive for integrated, purposeful programs that drive participation, engagement and adoption.



What about your community/communities are you most proud of?

I am most proud of the incredible programs and engaging campaigns our clients deploy with our Add-Ons. For example, one of our large enterprise clients was able to unify all of their employee recognition programs - peer-to-peer, manager-to-employee, nominations, and awards - inside of their Jive social intranet using TemboSocial Recognition. The seamless integration with Jive leverages the platform to automatically share recognition stories via Activity Streams, and by surfacing employee stories of success and achievement, it's helping the organization promote the repeatable behaviors tied to business success. This visibility encourages likes/replies/comments from the community and allows employees to build their personal legacy.



How do you balance work and life?

I definitely try to keep a healthy work/life balance in place. While hard work is important, I'm a firm believer in the need for undistracted personal time dedicated to nurturing rich relationships with family and friends.


When I'm not working, you'll find me at the movies (big film buff here!), hanging out with friends, or hiking Toronto's vast urban ravine network. If you're a movie lover, the Toronto International Film Festival (or TIFF as it's known) draws thousands of celebrities, Hollywood power players, and hardcore cinephiles to our great city every September. This year I saw 10 films and the standout was La La Land, starring Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling. It won the People's Choice Award at the festival and I can't wait for the world to fall in love with this movie when it gets a wide release in December. If I were a betting man, I'd put my money on a Best Picture win come Oscar time.


My partner and I also love to travel and we usually try and plan one big trip and a few long weekend getaways each year. This summer we visited Prague, Vienna, Amsterdam and Dublin (Here we are at the spectacular Cliffs of Moher on Ireland's rugged West coast) and next year we're planning a trip to Portugal's Azores islands.

smaller JW ireland post.jpg



What's your computer situation... Do you use a Mac or PC (or something else)?

macbook pic.png

I use a 12’’ MacBook as my daily driver and I absolutely love it. For my needs, it truly is the perfect machine -- more capable than a tablet with a super portable, ultra-thin form factor that is fun and modern.



Tell us what you use for your mobile device?

iPhone 6s 4.7 inch. Sensing a trend yet?



Pick one word that best describes how you work.

Connected. It's the nature of my job of course, but I also genuinely love connecting others with contacts in my professional and personal networks. The other week I was happy to connect a friend who was travelling solo in London with the lovely Dina Vekaria-Patel, who generously invited her to pop by Pearson's office for tea and a visit to their beautiful rooftop terrace. How's that for the Power of Connection?




Besides Jive, what apps/software/tools can't you live without?

The usual business tools like LinkedIn for networking and Hubspot for CRM and we're always jumping on Hangouts for team chat/video calls. I'm also a huge Words With Friends fan (My handle is @brennankirby on there if you're up for a challenge! I'm undefeated against Jeopardy! Champion scottshive - just sayin' ) and of course all the usual social apps like Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat.



Do you have a favorite non-computer gadget?


It just arrived the other week so I might be jumping the gun a bit in calling it my favorite but I had a chance to take DJI's new Mavic Pro out for a spin over my old home town this weekend and it did not disappoint. Here's a quick video I put together:



Anyone else in the JW community into aerial photography? Let's connect!



What do you listen to while you work?

Most days I listen to the hum of my coworkers collaborating in our open-concept office space. When I need to tune out and really focus I’ll pop my headphones in and listen to an upbeat playlist on Spotify.



What's your sleep routine like?

Arianna Huffington would be disappointed to hear that I often get by on 6 hours of sleep a night, but it works for me.



Are you more of an introvert, ambivert or extrovert?

I am definitely an introvert but I've learned to push myself out of my comfort zones to suit the crowd and environment I'm a part of. In her hilarious new book The Girl With The Lower Back Tattoo, Amy Schumer has a chapter on introverts that's a fun read for anyone looking to better understand what makes us oft-misunderstood introverts tick.



What's the best advice you've ever received (and from whom)?

When I was little my dad gave me the best advice I’ve ever received; If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Learning this at a young age gave me a healthy sense of skepticism and fostered a lifelong curiosity to better understand the world around me.




Thanks for sharing, Brennan! I look forward to meeting you in person at JiveWorld17!

Doing well is the result of doing good” was said by Ralph Waldo Emerson in the 19th century about capitalism. I believe strongly in this philosophy and have looked to it to guide me when facing the harder decisions. If you do the right thing today, it will, in the end, deliver the best long-lasting result.


Humana is a Jive customer who practices this approach. With millions of customers and billions of dollars in sales, the world’s leading health and well-being company puts its money where its heart is. On tough issues like hurricane and flood relief to supporting homeless veterans, Humana gives back again and again and values people at the core. Earlier this year, the Human Rights Campaign recognized Humana as one of the best workplaces for LGBTQ equality in its annual Corporate Equality Index.


One of the ways Humana is able to champion its humanitarian efforts is by utilizing a combination of several Jive-powered internal and external communities to build relationships and trust between the people who make it all happen: employees, partners and their customers. Mike Bellissimo, enterprise vice president at Humana, explained at our recent Jive Executive Advisory Board meeting, “Communities establish trust, and that trust enables partnership.”


Humana supports employees with an interactive intranet, called “Fuse,” to bring thousands of dispersed, diverse associates together to collaborate, find content and share expertise, no matter where they are. “They know they can ask questions. They know that they can find the solutions they need,” says Humana Digital Innovation Manager Sabrina Deitch. “Jive is, for us, the ability to connect the right people, the right content at the right time, all through one single front door no matter what their location may be.”


Humana employees work hard to prove every day that doing good and doing well go hand in hand. Thank you, Humana team, for our partnership in innovation and good!



ThinkstockPhotos-522390562 (1).jpg

Today, leading global technology research and advisory firm, Ovum, announced that it has ranked Jive's Interactive Intranet platform as a leader in its Ovum Decision Matrix: Selecting an Enterprise Social Networking Product. This recognition is in no small part thanks to YOU – our amazing JiveWorks community. Without your support, interaction and feedback, we wouldn't be where we are today.


The Ovum report states that Jive's collaboration hub "advances the company's vision of enabling people to work better together in connected, collaborative, secure online communities." While most of you manage your own internal or external communities through Jive, the JiveWorks community embodies our mission of connecting and collaborating even though we are all from different companies and geographical locations. The best part? "Jive provides enterprises with a unified user experience that can extend beyond a single organization or entity, making it invaluable to those organizations comprised of multiple different business units, ventures or brands." Not only can you bring various tools into your communities, you can collaborate with other like-minded people regardless of company, location or industry.


I am so proud of our JiveWorks community, where we all do our best to support, care and collaborate with each other. It doesn't matter what your position is, what company you work for or where you are located. Your personalities, brilliance and humor inspire us to do our best work every day. I'm so thankful for each person who takes the time out of their day to answer a question, post a blog or dive into the discussions here on JiveWorks.


Thank you everyone in the JiveWorks community! You are truly awesome!

"There’s never been a better — or more confusing — time in enterprise collaboration. With stalwart vendors continually adding to their suites and new players entering the space every day, it seems that most businesses should be able to find the ideal application to meet their needs."



How can you leverage the benefits of conversational apps such as Slack and Facebook's workplace as well as document centric apps like Microsoft's O365

and SharePoint to achieve true collaboration ?


We believe the answer is in a true collaboration hub that utilizes integrations with the right use cases. Different applications provide compelling solutions to different problems, including personal productivity, multi participant communication and content authoring. Applications should keep pushing the productivity and pace of business even further, but they are best complemented by a tool that can selectively curate valuable bits of conversations , discussions, content and media to break down corporate silos, as well as provide a corporate wide platform with a familiar and intuitive user experience.


A hub approach also helps with consistent onboarding, keeping employees informed about important corporate communications and many other use cases that cut across different departments and stakeholders within, as well as outside, the organization.


for more information, you are welcome to check my recent article in CMS wire: Enterprise Collaboration Means Finding the Right Mix

People at table.png

There have been some big names making big noise in the enterprise collaboration arena lately. Despite all of the excitement surrounding recent announcements by Facebook introducing its new Workplace platform and Microsoft debuting the new Office 365-based Teams chat app, do they really address the riddle they purport to solve; namely getting employees to work better together?


Like self-described status quo-disruptor Slack before them, chat-based apps such as Workplace and Teams do bring important conversations into their respective platforms, but they may ultimately miss the mark. That's because it's the last part of that equation that may be the most important indicator of future success: to their respective platforms. Our research shows that employees want more, not fewer tools and that collaboration suffers when people are forced into a single vendor's stack. That's true for document-centric approaches like Microsoft's Office 365 and SharePoint as well.


In my latest article for ITProPortal, I discuss what's happening in the space today and argue that the key to achieving optimal levels of collaboration within an organization is to give employees choice. By placing an interactive intranet at the centre of your collaborative universe, your workers not only have the freedom to use the tools that work best for them via integrations, they can also reach across borders to work with others outside of the enterprise as well; including contractors, freelancers, partners, vendors and customers.


Perhaps the biggest advantage of the collaboration hub-approach, though, is that, rather than introducing more silos the way chat-based apps have a tendency to do, an interactive intranet collects and stores your company's data, making it visible, searchable and memorable across the enterprise. By adding an all-important corporate memory element, a collaboration hub means that crucial knowledge isn't lost when employees move on or retire. And when you're innovating at the speed of light, having easy access to knowledge may be the biggest competitive advantage you have.


To find out more, read my piece, The state of collaboration in the digital workplace at ITProPortal.

Swarmed by unimportant @Mentions? Don't just swat away @Mentions; stop these pests before they strike!


Here are some tips for keeping your inbox streamlined and clutter free so you won't miss any important information. Feel free to copy and paste these tips into your community and adjust as needed!


@ mention boy.pngWhat you can do for others:

  • Avoid the FYI @mentions. Only use @mention when you really want a particular person's attention.
  • Don't @mention a place in which you are creating your content. People could get notified twice: once because they follow the place and the second time for the @mention itself.
  • Don't @mention department space AND department work groups. Example: If you expect every Sales person to follow Sales, don't @mention all the possible Sales related work groups also. This is inbox spam waiting to happen.
  • Scheduling your recurring content. If you are a place owner or a regular content creator, have an editorial calendar for recurring content. Best practice: one new content item per week to give people the opportunity to engage with that content without getting overrun with new information.





@ mention girl.pngWhat you can do for yourself:

  • You don't need to follow everything in your inbox. Check where and who you are following in your inbox regularly to limit the noise.  A space/group/person that you initially thought was valuable to follow in your inbox may not be the right connection for you today. For items that require less monitoring, you can follow them in a News stream.
  • "Hide New Activity" is your inbox BFF. Yes, your manager wrote a super awesome blog. You want to see it in your inbox but you don't care to be notified in your inbox every single time someone comments on it. Make sure to use "Hide New Activity" on the bottom right hand corner of your inbox to limit the noise.

Filter Blog

By date: By tag: