Archive for the 'Social Media' Category

CPA Congress – Navigate the New

Keith October 6th, 2010

I will be presenting two sessions at the CPA Congress in Melbourne next Monday. 

Congress

The Slide Packs are now available on SlideShare – they are:

Knowledge Transfer Toolkit Program

This case study outlines how to capture knowledge from a team of experts and make it available to a non-expert target audience.

A managed program approach is used to bring together all of the (traditionally separate) threads of content management, communications and learning to form a coherent, flexible knowledge transfer toolkit. A key element in putting this program into place is to encourage the required behaviours of all participants, including promoting knowledge sharing.

Using social media as a business tool

Topics covered are:

  • Trust and openness –the new paradigm for engagement
  • The importance of people and personality
  • Evaluating the benefits, risks and challenges
  • Existing channels and new strategies
  • Practical examples of social media

Culture, knowledge sharing and the Ocker

Keith May 7th, 2010

As part of some training material I have been writing for a client, I have revisited some related work I was engaged in some years ago.  One of the other authors I was working with then wrote a chapter on culture.  This work quoted a piece called Cultural variations in the cross-border transfer of organisational knowledge: an integrative framework, by R S Bhagat and others, from a 2002 edition of the Academy of Management Review.

This work describes national cultural patterns, and how they affect knowledge sharing.  Here is a simple summary diagram I have put together of the four basic types they described:

Culture & Knowledge Sharing

Both types of culture in the left column are independent and individualist, and predominantly Western. 

The top left quadrant is the domain of the rugged individualists.  They are mostly found in France, Germany, the UK and USA.  These people see each other as unique, and accept inequalities.  Thus they can naturally accept a social class structure.  They tend to hoard knowledge, and see this knowledge hoarding as power.  They like theoretical analysis.

The horizontal individualists in the bottom left domain see themselves as equal in status with each other.  Bhagat et al state that they also have “a relatively high tolerance for ambiguity and complexity”.   They are mostly found in Denmark, Sweden and Australia.  This is of particular interest, and will be discussed further.

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Engage, Energise, Empower

Keith March 15th, 2010

For some time I have been working with a team of highly-skilled consultants in a business consultancy group called “The 3e Factor”.  A new website for the group has just gone live. 

The 3e Factor is an innovative management consultancy specialising in business transformation, leadership development, and recruitment services, with its head office in Melbourne, Australia. Our focus is: Transforming Strategic Thinking into Reality by Developing Corporate Capability.

Have a look at the site, and browse the capabilities of the consultants working with the group.

Please feel free to contact me or The 3e Factor  if you would like to know more.

Who are you?

Keith February 23rd, 2010

There was some recent discussion at actKM about automated online profiling systems.  These systems trawl the net collecting information on people by name, and put together a “profile” of the person.  This can have interesting results.  A single person can end up with multiple disconnected profiles; or many people with similar names may find themselves merged into a single profile.

Some of these systems allow you to take control of your profile, and edit and update it.  The business models used by these sites can also be interesting.  Some are free, and offer premium services for a fee.  Some only allow you to take control of your profile for a certain fee. The information collated on the site may include details that are correct or incorrect; and the information may be current or out of date.

One that I have registered with is ZoomInfo, which allows me to log in and take control of my profile free of charge. I have been able to clean up the information there – although since my first clean-up, a heap more out-of-date info has been added, and a second profile created based on a mere mention of my name on another site with a link to a blog post here.  I have been able to easily merge this in to my existing profile. (Although some of the changes I made today may still take some time to appear on the site!) The site also keeps cached copy of the content that they found my name in – some of which is now up to four years old, and no longer exists at the original site. It seems that although I can edit my profile, I have no control over what out-of-date info they store about me in their cache. 

This has mostly been a positive experience, although I don’t remember seeing a lot of security to stop anyone else (whether of the same name or not) taking control of a profile.

I did once have a similar experience with a site called “Spock”, which seems to now have been subsumed into “Intelius“, purporting to be “The world’s largest and most accurate public record source.”  Although this does still provide links to some relevant sites on the search results, it no longer gives me any control over a profile, and all of the  “more detail” links refer to a name only vaguely like mine, and all results are within the USA. This seems to me to be a rather limited view of “the world” – as I understand it, the USA only accounts for 4.5% of the world’s population (according to the US Census Bureau).  However, for those in the USA, the sort of information stored here can supposedly include criminal records and “background checks”, which you have no apparent control over. 

This trend highlights the great benefit of occasionally searching for your own name on the net – that’s how I found out about ZoomInfo. It’s worth occasionally finding out what others are saying about you online. However, this is easy for someone with a name like mine – a Scottish first name and a French surname. So far as I know, I am still the only “Keith De La Rue” on the net. I pity all the “John Smiths” out there, and those with names of similar popularity of other ethnicities. (The secret is to choose your parents wisely – or change your name!) 

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Realising Our BroadBand Future

Keith December 7th, 2009

Can’t believe I forgot to post to the blog for all of November!  At least I have something new to post now…

The Government is hosting the “Realising Our BroadBand Future” forum on 10 and 11 Dec, to map the applications and business models that will thrive in Australia’s high speed broadband future.

Thanks to John Wells and co at CivicTEC, I am facilitating a parallel session in Melbourne that will generate some contributions to the discussion.  The session is at 8:30 to 12:00 next Thursday 10 Dec. Deloitte are very kindly hosting us at 550 Bourke St. This is a free session, but you must register. See the details, and click through to register here.

We’re talking about our connected future. This isn’t about technology, it’s about how we can all use it – to connect communities, build businesses, improve our education and health systems, create and innovate, improve our quality of life for all.  For those of you wishing to come along, please register as quickly as you can, as there are limited places available!  Read more in the Press Release.

I have circulated this to various networks in Melbourne – social media people, creative people, trampoline attendees, geeks, telecoms consultants and knowledge managers.  There should be some diverse points of view.  If you can’t make it, follow us on Twitter at #bbfmel.

Trampoline presentation

Keith October 24th, 2009

I’ll be off to trampoline in just a few hours, with the intention of doing a presentation on “The Idea Monopoly?” I have blogged on this topic before, and you can see the slide pack on SlideShare here.

The topic of organisational change – and getting people more involved in it – is something I have been becoming quite passionate about for a while now.  This presentation at trampoline will be the first time I have presented on the topic. I intend to develop this work, and its linking themes, in time to come.  I am currently playing with a new term for this – “orgsourcing”. You heard it first here!

The rains down in Africa

Keith July 11th, 2009

I have been following the “TOTO challenge” for a while now.  ActionAid Australia is sending Australian bloggers to remote parts of the world. Why? To help give poverty a voice:

Using blogs, Twitter, Facebook and more, the outreach blogger will travel to one of ActionAid’s program countries to help locals harness the power of social media to secure their human rights. You don’t need to be a blogging expert, you just need to have an open mind and be passionate about fighting the root causes of poverty. Social injustice and poverty are easy to ignore when hidden from view. Your mission will be to help bring attention to the scandal of poverty.”

The bloggers will spend one to two weeks in a remote community, blogging their experiences, and – importantly – training locals to use tools such as Twitter and blogs to shine a light on social injustice and human rights abuses.

One blogger has already been there to check out how the program will proceed. Read about Stilgherrian’s experiences on his blog.  Read some further discussion on how challenging this really is on Laurel Papworth’s blog – particularly read some of today’s comments (11 July).

Some very worthy people are now nominating themselves to be outpost bloggers. I have also put my hand up. My nomination text is as follows:

Most nominees here are far more worthy of this than I am – seriously. However, if you still need any more candidates, consider my hat to be in the ring.

I blog (and tweet – @kdelarue), and I have taught people about blogging.  I have been writing my own web sites for 10 years.

I absorb other cultures by eating in Lebanese restaurants in Sydney Rd, Coburg, and go to difficult, remote places by walking around Little India when I go to Singapore to speak at conferences.

The most adventurous thing I have done is to travel 5,000 km by motorcycle from Melbourne to Karratha, WA, in 6 days (29 years ago).

I enjoy writing and talking, researching and teaching. I have been known to get passionate about injustice, and I support Oxfam and others from the comfort of my armchair.

I am not fazed by having to set up my own technology under difficult circumstances, and am quite used to helping others to get things working as needed.

Work-wise, I only need approval from myself to make the time available to go.

Does any of this qualify me to help out with this project? Probably nothing like as much as others here, but drop me a line if you run out of the really suitable people, and I’ll be there.

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Knowledge Transfer and Collaboration

Keith July 10th, 2009

How do you go about transferring knowledge from one part of an organisation to another? For example, from a technical product management group to a business-to-business sales force? This is the topic of my new article published in the May/June issue of IDM Magazine. See a copy of the article on this site: Foundations of Knowledge.

This article effectively serves as a White Paper on the work that I have done in the past on a Knowledge Transfer Toolkit, and the related consultancy service now offered.

The Australian Collaboration Software Report

Are you currently using collaborative software, or are you planning to acquire it? Would you like to benchmark your experience against that of others? Are you based in Australia? Please fill out the survey at http://tinyurl.com/ozcollab now!

Matt Moore of Innotecture and I are researching the use of collaboration tools in Australia. “Collaboration” is a buzz term at the moment, and we want to get behind the hype to discover how organisations are selecting and implementing tools and whether they are benefiting from them. If you have experience with selecting, implementing or maintaining a collaboration tool within the last 12 months then we would like you to take part in this survey. 

Read more about what’s in it for you at: http://ozcollab.com/.

Twitter and the challenge of openness

Keith June 8th, 2009

I have posted on this blog about Twitter a number of times, and also written about it in one post at Digital Ministry. But as I foreshadowed there, there was one other aspect of Twitter that I intended to say more about – and that is the use of Twitter as a great tool for “open note taking”.  I have held off writing more about this, and I guess in some way I was looking for more to say about it. I have recently got the spark of inspiration that now prompts me to get back to the blog and get this all down…

First, back to the Digital Ministry article:

I like to record notes when I attend seminars.  For some time, I have been taking notes on a PDA rather than on paper, as the notes are then synchronised with my PC, and available for blogging or other reuse.  This is great for me.

But with Twitter, I can take notes in just the same way, and everyone “following” me on Twitter can choose to tune in if the topic is of interest.  The notes are necessarily brief, which helps to keep them focused.  Some of the feedback I have received from this has been overwhelmingly positive, with some stating that it is just like being there themselves.

The “tuning in” is done with the use of a “hashtag” – a word relevant to the title of the conference, preceded by a “#”, added to each tweet.  The attendees at the conference can immediately see each other’s tweets by searching for the hashtag, as can all of their followers not at the conference.  (It’s also a great way to connect with people with similar interests.) The Twitter stream provides a great summary after the conference for everyone. You can do this in Twitter search (which can be a bit slow and flaky), or through any of a number of other sites that access Twitter, such as #hashtags.

Since writing that, I have seen this practice grow. As there are more and more people using Twitter at conferences, the richness of the conversation has also grown. It has been great to see people unable to attend conferences actually joining in through Twitter. This is greatly facilitated by mobile Twitter interfaces or clients (dabr is my interface of choice). You can pick a Twitter-aware conference organiser when you see the hashtag put up on the screen at the beginning of the conference!  This saves any hassle in getting an agreed tag going.

Regular meetings may have different hashtags for different dates, or just re-use the same tag. For instance, at the monthly Melbourne KMLF meetings, we tend to stick to the same tag each month – #kmlf.  You can see some of our recent conversations (before, during and after the actual meetings) on #hashtags.

There’s more to be said about Twitter at conferences – but see Olivia Mitchell’s blog posts How to Present While People are Twittering and  8 things I learnt about using twitter as a participation tool for a great insight into fairly serious Twitter use at presentations.  (By the way – if you want to put up a live Twitter display during your presentation, go to Visible Tweets and enter your hashtag.) 

There are three particular points I would like to make on this topic:

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Capabilities

Keith April 7th, 2009

How do you define what you do? Particularly when the main thing you do is something as potentially nebulous as “Knowledge Management”?

In order to clarify the consultancy services that AcKnowledge Consulting is offering to the market, I have drafted a collection of Capability Statements. A Capability Statement is normally a fairly straightforward document, outlining a technical function that can be delivered by an organisation – particularly one operating in an area like IT outsourcing. This is fine where the technical capability is readily understood by all concerned.

The main area  of this consultancy service is Optimising organisational efficiency by effectively managing and delivering the knowledge required to meet business demands – with a particular focus on meeting the demands of a sales force. This could be summarised as “Knowledge Management for Sales”, but the term “Knowledge Management” can mean many different things. Accordingly, I have developed a slightly different format for my Capability Statements, as follows:

  • The Business Situation – an outline of the needs of a particular function or group within an organisation.
  • The Challenge – some specific issues in this area that require attention, or that are presenting a problem.
  • Where AcKnowledge Consulting can help – an outline of some of the specific ways that AcKnowledge Consulting can address these issues.
  • Why AcKnowledge Consulting? – some supporting information on relevant experience that can be brought to bear in this situation, including testimonials from clients as appropriate.

These documents are written on a single page for each capability.  For an example, see the Knowledge Transfer Capability Statement.  The current list of capabilities and statements is available on the About page on this site.

I welcome any feedback or comments on these statements, and how useful you may find them for understanding the services described.

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