Archive for the 'Collaboration' Category

The Twitter Agency

Keith October 2nd, 2008

@SilkCharm (aka Laurel Papworth) has picked up on a certain organisation that is about to spend a large amount of money on marketing.  This led her to the idea of establishing The Twitter Agency.

SilkCharm has 1,670 followers.  That makes a pretty powerful, well connected agency!  (Hey – I have 59 followers myself!) :-)

So there are now at least thirty of us contributing to the joint effort.  I have absolutely no idea where this is going, but it looks like fun!

Breaking News: Read the full story here.

Practice makes perfect

Keith September 25th, 2008

I wrote earlier this year about “Practice, Communities and Technology“.  This post stressed the importance of the “practice”: 

For a CoP to be successful, the community must become part of the practice itself… the community needs to become part of how they do their job.

People in an organisation will just not do things that aren’t part of their job accountability and that they see no point in doing. 

Just today I hit on a really neat metaphor to illustrate this…

Ares

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Meta-surveys

Keith September 19th, 2008

A bit of breathing space on my current project…

Just reading about yet another organisational survey-like tool – you know, “rate your organisation’s ability at (xyz) on a scale of 1 to 10″.  It reminded me of one I was asked to respond to some time ago.  Working for a multi-siloed behemoth of an organisation, my response to each question was “it depends”.  There was no way to answer this sort of thing on an organisation-wide basis, because the answer would be different in different silos – or even different areas within each silo.

… which in turn made me think about other surveys that never seem to offer choices that make sense, and the general low opinion of surveys that many people have (particularly the odd one or two on actKM). :-)

So, I thought, why not make a survey a two-part approach. 

First, you send out an outline of the information you wish to collect and the set of questions that you think will be useful to collect the information (maybe to a sub-group of the full survey population).  Ask your correspondents to fill in the sort of answers that they would like to choose from, and to also suggest better questions to collect the information.

Then, use what you have collected to construct the actual survey.

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Closing the deal

Keith August 25th, 2008

Matt Moore and I recently collaborated on an article for Melcrum’s KM Review magazine: Closing the deal with the help of knowledge.

A copy of this is now available for downloading on the Documents page on this site.

“Using social media” presentation

Keith August 15th, 2008

So, I delivered the workshop today – to three great participants!  The workshop was: Using social media to harness knowledge within an organisation: Addressing the challenges.  We all had a great time, and a good conversation! 

I have now also registered with SlideShare for the first time, and uploaded a (very slightly modified) version of the slide pack.  Not totally happy with the way it has been rendered, but it seems to be fairly readable.  It is also available for download.  Help yourself! And thanks to those who contributed…

Also had a great conversation with Ian Farmer of Bullseye.  Ian pointed me at a few interesting sites:

  • Free web meetings at Dimdim.
  • Social language learning at Livemocha.  This apparently provides two-way language learning – with real people.
  • How to draw maps using your GPS – and lots of other apps – at Fire Eagle.

Also got a good reference from elsua via Twitter for “Twelve Ways to Sell Social Media to Your Boss – Don’t Forget about Yourself!” This may be of particular interest to this morning’s participants!

A job worth doing

Keith July 23rd, 2008

“If something’s worth doing, it’s worth making someone else do it.”

I’m sitting in a small bar in Bourke St called “Spleen Central“, listening to a great three-piece jazz band (Heather Stewart jazz blues trio – featuring Heather on violin). Just come from this month’s KMLF meeting – more about that later. Ideal environment for a final post on KM Australia…

The quote above is in reference to another twist on social networking – Dabble Do. The idea is to use your online social network to get your friends to do your stuff for you.

The first session of the second day (which I sadly missed part of) was from Jeff Kelly. The following points are mostly from Jeff, so far as I remember.  (* Late addition – I expect some were also from John Girard and Ian Farmer of Bullseye – apologies to any other presenters I may be quoting here!)

  • Enterprise 2.0 is supported by three legs – technology, process and culture, and all three must be in balance. Unlike the old days of big IT installations, the technology is now the easy bit. Culture is now the challenge. We have to move from command and control to open and sharing.
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Testosterone

Keith June 26th, 2008

As a counterpoint to the earlier post on my opinion of how to do Change Management, this is an unedited extract of an article about Telstra that appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald on 30 May last year. 

Mr Winn earlier updated business leaders on Telstra’s five-year transformation program…  As well, Mr Winn, who began his career as a linesman in the US, delivered a testosterone-charged description of the new management style at the telco.

“We’re not running a democracy. We don’t manage by consensus,” he said.  We’re criticised for it. The fact of the matter is we run an absolute dictatorship,” he said.

A cultural shift was needed at the former government-owned enterprise, along with changes in business processes, he said.  “If you can’t get the people to go there and you try once and you try twice … then you just shoot them and get them out of the way.”

I offer this without further comment.  Please compare this with the earlier post and tell me which view you think offers the best business result…

The idea monopoly?

Keith June 24th, 2008

When leaders learn to creatively engage their subordinates in everyday decision making, they can make change happen.

I have written here before about Change Management.  I am still of the opinion that this is an entirely misunderstood function in most of today’s organisations.  It was thus rather refreshing to read in the current issue of IABC’s Communications World magazine that someone has actually done some research that supports my view!

The quote above is from John Smythe, the author of the article Engaging Employees to Drive Performance.  (This is available to IABC members online at the magazine site above.)

The usual concept of change is that it is “done” by executives (usually aided and abetted by consultants).  We have more recently introduced the discipline of Change Management as a way of helping people to adapt to the agreed change.  Today, we focus more on Employee Engagement as a way of more actively getting staff involved in understanding the change, rather than just being told about it after the fact.

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The value of social networking and collaboration

Keith June 18th, 2008

Blogs are only useful if you post things on a regular basis!  It seems that life after Telstra has been busier than when I was there!  Since then, I have started work on a number of projects in my new role as an independent consultant, and I have now managed to update this site to reflect my new status.  So time to get back into the blog-posting saddle…

The new projects I have been working on have mostly come via the network of people that I have had the privilege to meet and work with over the last four years or so.  Much of my contact with these people has been via this site, and via Facebook and LinkedIn.  (Which have also helped me to find a new car!)  So it was very timely that one of my network colleagues has drawn my attention to this NY Times article on LinkedIn’s recent capital raising.  (Thanks, Sharon!) 

LinkedIn has just raised $53 million (USD) in capital.  Based on this - and recent valuations of Facebook and MySpace - these three social networking sites are potentially worth something like the following (in USD):

  • MySpace: $580 million
  • LinkedIn: $1 billion
  • Facebook: $15 billion

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Context and Connection

Keith March 6th, 2008

Funny how things tend to coincide.  One actKM participant asked in the last day or so for advice on a “… collaboration Enterprise tool that enables you to find internally (to the organisation) the individual (or group) who has the right experience/knowledge to help you out with a specific problem.”

No-one on the forum seems (so far) to have referred to the Lend-Lease “ikonnect” model.  I am not an expert on this (no pun intended!), but from what I understand, it relies on people first, and systems second.  A central group of well-connected people field questions for experts, and use their personal networks to connect the question askers with the relevant experts.  After the question is answered, they document the response.  This way, a data base of both experts and expertise can be built up. 

This even has a public face – with the names of contact people.  This seems to me to be a really strong, practical application of Organisational Networks.

In fact, what we are talking about here is meta-expertise – expertise on experts.

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