Every once in a while I can find the time to use WordPress’ excellent tag surfing system, that showcases the latests posts in WordPress blogs for selected tags. I’m sorry to admit that I hardly do RSS reading, for my peace of mind :-). Too many angles to track.
So today I went fishing for the first time since mid December, and there was a really interesting catch:
– The Giraffe. I found this multi-authored, development-oriented KM blog thanks to their announcement about Lucie Lamoreux. She does impressive work, and the the blog begins to look impressive too. Even more relevant are the posts about the end of Bellanet, one of the larger and older references in that corner of knowledge management and a precursor of many other efforts. I didn’t know it was closing at the end of December (that will give you an idea of where I’ve been these last few months) and I’ll be looking into the existing efforts to continue KM4Dev and other initiatives.
– The revolutionary. An article that promises an article, by someone who looks at KM as a revolutionary tool yet works it in the usual way… or not: can’t tell without more data :-). Updated: Jinno Ordonez now links to the actual paper. Donwloading…
– The introspective. Bill Johnston of Forum One shares thoughts about what a community manager should be looking to measure in the new year. Not a bad list to start with, at all. Coincidentally we’re working on the annual poll of Macuarium users and readers, and this year we’ve drafted an external company to do the compiling… and the baiting; we’ll be giving away some gadget to increase the reach.
– The retrospective. Google’s team blogs are full of interesting bits, and thanks to Ian Lumb I found this very relevant piece, especially about the uses and role of blogging in corporate settings. Besides being interesting for the news themselves.
– The patient gardener. Another blog I don’t remember seeing before and is positively filled with relevant posts, Kelly Parker’s Community Gardening. First off: mourning. An issue we’ve had to deal with, but thankfully not yet in such a deep way. It highlights the emotional content of community, something we’ve harped on a lot here. Second: social networks and false friends. The author posits that social networking sites should enable users to run different layers of “friends” (maybe by recognising the role of “acquaintaces”). I thoroughly agree, even if that would substantially change the proposition of those places. She also spots this great piece by Jason Scott about “templates” for roles and events in communities, recurring ways things are done or happen; lots of food for thought there. Last but not least, Kelly highlights an article by Cory Doctorow about dealing with trolls and troll-induced community self-destruction. That article is key to understanding a lot of things that many “community libertarians” find strange. To make the story short, Macuarium.com was founded just after Mackeros.com’s forums imploded in bickering, thus depriving the Spanish Mac community of any serious online resouce. The danger is real, especially for idealists.
– The project manager. This was a very nice find. The leader of the global project management operation of SAP runs a blog (Paul Ritchie, if I read the leaves well), and has shared some insights of late. Specifically, here he shares thoughts and a representation of the impact of good knowledge management on the “signal to noise” ratio (OK, so he calls it “sense vs nonsense”) and the emergence of “shared meaning” (which he calls “common sense”: those INSEAD people have a knack for selling the soundbite… or were they from the MIL?). Whatever your lexicological preferences, the representation makes sense and is a rather good approximation to very relevant concepts. Oh, and he does find a link between training, knowledge management, and the ability to innovate. And he shows a practical, pragmatic view of KM which is very healthy. Besides, I’ve heard many good things about SAP’s communities and KM, so he’s a reference.
– The guru. The blog above was not the only place today linking to Gary Hamel’s latest page at Harvard’s site. I’ll try not to be cynical just yet but the title is “Management 2.0“. Go ahead, read it. You should. Not just to see how he does a masterful, perfectly targeted sales pitch for the services of his consulting firm, Strategos (golf-based warm fuzzy story included), but also because he makes a couple of good points. One, that the “innovation genes” in every employee can be activated (just not simply by expensively changing the environment with snazzy tools and lavish incentives: training and opportunity help). The second tidbit is the list of innovation-stoppers that need to be attacked (key for a sales pitch for a book, but that is another story) to teach “new tricks” to old dogs:
1. Unchallenged orthodoxies—the widely held industry beliefs that blind incumbents to new opportunities.
2. Underleveraged competencies—the “invisible” assets and competencies, locked up in moribund businesses, that can be repurposed as new growth platforms
3. Underappreciated trends—the nascent discontinunities that can be harnessed to reinvigorate old business models and create new ones.
4. Unarticulated needs—the frustrations and inconveniences that customers take for granted, and industry stalwarts have thus far failed to address.
– The unconferencer. Some things to think about at Shahnawaz Khan’s Tipping Point blog. First off, a comparison between Web 2.0 and “unconferencing” philosophical pillars. Then, a practical list of tips for organising unconferences in a corporate setting. They make sense too. Since I think this kind of events is the way forward for community of practice-oriented events (as opposed to rigid sector events organised by third parties), it’s good reading.
– The portal. I see I’ll have to do some serious digging to find out what’s up at KMworld… but that’s another story.