Obie wrote a post on the benefits of IM.
Marco asked, “What about the problems that an IM will bring to the company? [ I ] know that people tend to lose some time just chatting with friends, girlfriend, whatnot.”
I have a controversial theory: IM brings no problems at all to a company. If a company’s staff don’t care enough about the company to make it succeed, then not having IM won’t make a lot of difference.
This is analagous to XP explained, which suggests that XP cannot save a project where the staff don’t care about the project. Nothing can save a project where the staff don’t care about the project. Except, perhaps, things which make the staff care more, such as the joy of unfettered access to IM, and the sense of pride one feels at being trusted to use it responsibly.