The Sweettt Podcast – Episode 11 – Information Flow (Part II)

I haven’t been very successful today trying to join the superb 24 hour online event from Corporate Learning Trends and Innovation on “Conversations about Learning in Organisations” that I blogged about yesterday. It looks like Elluminate doesn’t get along well with my Mac apparently, since it keeps crashing consistently ever single time I try to access the online event (And I don’t seem to be the only one either!); so I guess I will have to try again tomorrow and, if that doesn’t work still, I suppose I will be catching up with the various recordings that will be made available at a later time.

Moving onwards then!

Yes, folks, it is that time again! The Sweettt Podcast moves on further along and I am happy to bring you over here our next episode (Episode 11), where both Matt Simpson, my good friend and co-host, and yours truly spent a few minutes talking some more around the topic of Information Flow (Part II). You can download or play the podcasting episode from this location. And here are some show notes of what you may expect from listening to it that Matt already mentioned in the corresponding blog post:

  • What is more important, quality or quantity?
  • Who you are in your blog is very different than who you are in a microblog.
  • What constitutes a valid blog? Can a blog be trivial?
  • When does your Twitter become a village? – See Laura Fitton
  • How do you enter a online social village and navigate its streets?
  • To achieve flow in the information space, how do you sample information?
  • What is the alternative to managing content within the information space?
  • How do you choose which new technology to use in the information sharing space?
  • What kind of people try technology first? What does a bleeding edge early adopter look like? See Chris Miller
  • How do you keep track of your new technology?
  • What’s the ideal amount of technology for the majority of us?
  • Which is the predominant future trend, increased technology fragmentation with more tools, or consolidation of technology into fewer tools?
  • If services become specialized and exploited in other contexts (other web sites), what will be the incentive for the service to be provided, especially if people are not going to the homepage?

And, of course, you will notice as well how we spent some time as well talking about living “A World Without Email” and our growing need to diversify our email inboxes; to fragment them so that it does fit a specific purpose versus all purposes, which is what is happening at the moment. Some fascinating conversations, indeed, which developed into other areas we will be exploring in future podcasting episodes.

Oh, yes, it is good to be back! Hope you enjoy the episode, just as much as we did :-)

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Open Enterprise 2009 – Lee Bryant Interviewed by Stowe Boyd

Gran Canaria - Puerto de MoganAt the risk of starting to sound repetitive, I am going to be sharing with you folks another video interview I have been watching lately from the increasingly-by-the-day more interesting Open Enterprise 2.0 initiative that both Oliver Marks and Stowe Boyd have been working on for a few months now.

This time around I would like to point you to what, to date, has been one of my favourite interviews from the superb pool of great talent and thought leadership that has been shared throughout each and everyone of those interviews. Thus, without much further ado, head over to the Enterprise 2.0 Blog and check out Open Enterprise 2009: Lee Bryant Interview.

In that particular interview, the always insightful and thought-provoking Stowe Boyd gets to spend some time with Lee Bryant (Co-founder of Headshift, and perhaps one of the smartest folks I know in the area of Enterprise 2.0), while they discuss the current state of things of Social Computing within the corporate world; covering topics like the current econolypse, the history and background from the Social Web that has brought us to where we are (Brilliant piece, by the way, to get some perspectives on where we are with things and a massive wakeup call for everyone out there who may still think this whole movement on social networking is all new and shiny. <beep> wrong assumption).

From there onwards both Lee and Stowe get to talk about one of my favourite topics all along: Return on Investment for Social Software with some rather interesting and provocative conclusions I will suggest you take a look at and have a listen. It won’t disappoint you, to say the least; then they end up talking about perhaps the biggest force behind Enterprise 2.0 at the moment: Change Management and Culture. With a twist!

I know I could talk quite a bit on this very same topic to introduce the last piece of the interview, but I am not going to spoil it. I am just going to stop over here and suggest you have a good listen to a superb interview. You will find far too many precious gems shared in the last part of the interview to mention and cover them over here. For sure.

I bet you may be wondering though what I liked the most from the overall conversation, right? Well, as a teaser, I would go ahead and share with your folks how Lee’s thoughts on the big challenges for Enterprise 2.0 are just exactly what I am trying to do myself with living “A World Without Email“. That’s how far I will go into that area for now ;-) heh …

Who would have thought about that, eh? Like I said, here is the embedded version of another priceless interview by Stowe, with Lee as the special guest:

Oh, and in case you may not know, the wonderful folks of Headshift are one of the fine sponsors, and active participants, from the great SOMESSO event that will kick off next month, May 15th. Will you be there? If so, let us know how it goes. Share your two cents through live tweeting, or live con-blogging, so that we can all benefit from it and learn plenty more from the outstanding lineup of speakers who will be there. Don’t miss it! :-)

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Traditional Knowledge Management Systems – Adapt or Die

Gran Canaria - Puerto de MoganIf you have been following this blog for a while, you would know how my professional background comes from various different areas associated for quite some time now with Knowledge Management, in particular, traditional Knowledge Management: Collaboration, Community Building, Learning, etc. Yes, I am one of those folks who eventually worked for several different projects, throughout the years, dealing with deploying successfully specific KM and community building programs for various business units.

One of them, perhaps one of the most powerful and traditional ones, was IBM‘s Global Business ServicesLearning and Knowledge. At the time with one of the most impressive KM Systems in place to date. One of those resources considered an essential KM tool for every single practitioner to work with: KnowledgeView. Then towards end of 2005 a relatively new concept came about: Web 2.0. Social Software. Social Computing. A radical change in how things were operating at the moment. Disruptive enough to pay attention to it. Essential to adapt or die in the attempt. And a couple of years later, Practitioner Portal was born.

That’s a summary of how traditionally powerful Knowledge Management Systems need to be ready to adapt or die with the emergence of Enterprise 2.0 (Yes, I know it may sound a bit too drastic, but you get the idea of what I am after with that expression); how they need to come to terms with the fact they are no longer in control (They never were for that matter!) of how knowledge flows within the organisation; how they should start realising they need to make it much easier sharing knowledge and experiences across amongst knowledge workers, making it much more participative and engaging that whatever has been happening in the past; how in the end complex fixed taxonomies and processes, as well as a rather cumbersome set of KM tools to use extensively, is not going to go very far. Specially in the current business environment we are working in, where more and more social computing is taking over the corporate world by storm.

Yes, indeed, for those traditional KMS to survive it would be about time now to start figuring out how they would want to get the most out of this next next wave of interactions to improve collaboration, both inside and outside of the firewall. Thus Knowledge Sharing is born. Does it ring a bell? Probably not. But if I tell you to go and have a look into Bryant Clevenger‘s article at KM Edge titled “Web 2.0: Changing How Value Is Created and Measured at IBM” the story would be different,

Bryant, global leader for the IBM Global Business Services knowledge sharing strategy, used to be my manager (Then became my manager’s manager) at the time when that transition into the social computing world was just getting started for that particular business unit as well as for KnowledgeView. For the rest of the story I would like to point you to Bryant’s post, because it is very indicative of how things got started and where they ended up just recently. The Practitioner Portal itself.

Here is an interesting quote from Bryant’s entry that I thought would be worth while mentioning over here to give you a taster of what that transformation has been like:

[...] we undertook a massive overhaul of the technology and approach we use for knowledge management, moving from a centrally managed, linear, taxonomy- and repository-based system to one that leverages the best of Web 2.0, including social software, user participation, and key market-driven concepts like sponsored links. We see this as a shift from “knowledge management” to “knowledge sharing.”

Impressive, don’t you think? Well, it gets better. Bryant will eventually be keynoting on this very same transformation, and plenty more!, at the upcoming APQC Knowledge Management conference event in Houston by mid May. But to get things going and share some further context on what you may potentially find out at the event, here is a YouTube video that he has shared that provides a lot more background on what that change management process was like:

I know that plenty of folks out there may be wondering right now whether KM is dead or not; specially traditional KM. Perhaps it is; perhaps it is not. Maybe it is morphing into something else. Something we have failed to name it yet (Knowledge Management is quite an oxymoron, don’t you think?), but that’s already started with the process of adapting itself to the new rules of engagement in the Enterprise 2.0 world, because I seriously doubt it would want to go away just like that after all of these years. I eventually think that it will adapt successfully and move on. And the example of IBM’s GBS Practitioner Portal, as you may have been able to see, is just one of those to which you could apply quite nicely the following quote from the always insightful Charles Darwin:

It is not the strong, nor the intelligent who survive, but those who are quickest to adapt

So is your traditional Knowledge Management System ready for such unprecedented transition? Are you ready for such a massive transformation of your business? Is your KMS ready to adapt or die in the attempt?

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