Is This Future Shock?

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Archive for the ‘knowledge management’ Category

Drilling into the New Year – what will you find?

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Oil Rigs

Oil Rigs at Rest

New Year, New opportunities

I’m not a great believer in New Year resolutions, often finding them a trite way of setting weak aspirations; however, the happenstance of calendar dates does give an opportunity to both look back, and look forward. So these are “sort of not-resolutions

My last year or two  have been challenging in family and health terms, and some sorting out at work has been testing.

I’m fortunate both with my family and my employer – and I have much to be grateful for, so I thought I’d set out some things I’d like to do.

Blogging: I have sadly neglected my blog, for Twitter, Facebook and occasional Tumblr forays. I am going to share more content here – although I may play a little with both Medium and ghost. Some of it will be technology related; some security; some knowledge management, and some more personal… I’ll try to keep my Scottish Independence thoughts elsewhere.

Coastguard: I’m part of a Search and Rescue Team locally – I intend to work more at this and step up to a more senior team role.

Family & Friends: I intend to make more effort to leave my lovely Scottish eyrie and actually see more of people this year

Personal Development:

  • I have achieved a couple of security qualifications last year, CISSP and SCF; I intend to further my security knowledge and my general architecture knowledge
  • I intend to improve my physical fitness
  • I intend to do more to keep abreast of technology – particularly Internet of Things type activity and cloud based work
  • I will do more outdoor activity, including regular sleeping outdoors – particularly in my hammock that I have used for 8 years on and off.

Work: I have said I’m lucky in my employer; I want to make sure I work with some wider teams in the company and build my contributions across our security and architecture team.

What about you?

Have you any aspirations/goals you’d like to share?

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Does Knowledge Management matter?

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This is the question posed – but not answered – in the brilliant post On whether Knowledge Management matters by Brad Hinton. I was alerted to this by a timely tweet from @johnt

He posits:

Based on my own observations and discussions with people, perhaps the only people who care about KM are the KM-ers in the industry itself.

He suggests that we perhaps celebrate the odd success of bottom up initiatives, rather than recognising that they symbolise general apathy from the executive.

In as poignant comment, he adds

I really doubt that senior management has any interest in KM because KM is often about empowering a workforce, or at least flattening the structure via networks and network platforms. There is a perception that this weakens the authority of “those in power” and it also permits workers to have greater freedom to make choices

I think he’s probably painting a gloomy picture, but I wonder if KM – with its ability to stimulate and empower people in the team – is seen by some seniors as challenging their “command and control” approach.

My firm is revisiting our KM strategy, and I’ll be watching carefully.

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Written by SteveEllwood

January 19th, 2010 at 10:47 pm

What does your website look like to me?

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a blob of Flash

The image above is what the website of Inventory magazine looks like, to me.

Like many others, I generally block Flash using Flashblock. Most Flash is an intrusion, and it slows up my machine and uses resources I could use to keep more tabs open… Yes, I can choose to see what is in Flash. Why does this site not want me to see anything?

If I can’t instantly get something from your site… I’ll likely move on, and any chance of sharing knowledge will have gone.

My attention was drawn to this site via a posting from Paul Downey entitled Polite Comment, about Web Design. He’s started looking at Web Design and is trying to encourage

standards based Web sites which work in any browser and which are truly inspirational and from which we can learn from using view-source

I fully support Paul’s campaign, and encourage others to support this.

As I said in Lessons from Jamie Zawinski

You don’t need stuff to be unreadable to be attractive.

One of Paul Downey‘s erstwhile colleagues, Phil Hawksworth, (@philhawksworth), is a passionate advocate of Unobtrusive Javascript and Progressive Enhancement – and made an explanatory site about this. You can see the site at unobtrusify.com, and read how unobtrusify works.

So, you can make stuff look good and read properly.

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Written by SteveEllwood

November 29th, 2009 at 12:07 am

Twitter Chats for Knowledge Management

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How did a Twitter chat work?

I had a brief meeting today, about Knowledge Management.

I didn’t know where the meeting started; I didn’t know everyone who was there. I didn’t know when the meeting started – and I wasn’t invited.

How did that work then? Basically, I spotted a tweet from someone I follow that was hashtagged with #KMers. Following the link got me to the live search for the hashtag, and I was able to take part in the lively discussion – the bit that particularly interested me was the creative tension between folksonomy and taxonomy.

What’s it all about?

Chasing it up after the event, I found the excellent KMers.org site, where a group of Knowledge Management professionals

aim to use a Social Media tool (Twitter Chat) and a CMS tool (Drupal) to run a site that helps KMers share information about the practice of Knowledge Management

I just lucked into it. I enjoyed the section I was involved in, and I’d recommend future events.

You can see the transcript of the [Pilot Chat] Best Ideas from KM World.

If you are interested in Knowledge Management you should take a look. Maybe I’ll see you there?

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Written by SteveEllwood

November 24th, 2009 at 9:01 pm

Things in transition

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transition

Back in October, I was reminding people to keep up with their social networks as the recession brought challenges.

While it was hardly prescient, it was brought home to me when my role at work changed; my operating division had what’s called a headcount challenge – basically, they needed less people to run the work – and I was placed in what’s called a transition centre.

Now, for years I’ve worked on an assignment basis – work comes up, I say I’m interested, and if suitable, I get to do the job… which might be for a month, a quarter, or even a year or two. You learn a lot of new skills, get to work with really interesting people and technologies and then move on.

This means moving to a new role is not a surprise, and nor is having to change what I do. Currently, I’ve been asked to manage some folk as they move from one role to another.

Nearly everyone realises as the business environment changes, the work we’re carrying out has to change – and we’ll need to be flexible to do this. What I’m looking forward to is using some tools rather more Enterprise 2.0 than spreadsheets to help people on their journey.

Whatever people like me do to help individuals, their new roles and assignments have to be found by them – and one of the best ways? Through their own networks.

So, I repeat my plea.
Keep up with your social networks.

Image Credit: ruSSeLL hiGGs

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Written by SteveEllwood

May 17th, 2009 at 4:13 pm

Social Media & Knowledge Management

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scratching head

Social Media in the Enterprise

I wondered about the impact social media tools were making in knowledge management for the enterprise. We have got some very rapid growth in the takeup of the tools in my company; we have loads of wikis, internal blogs – growing use of Twitter.

I wondered about the difference between *Information* Management & *Knowledge* management.

Thanks to a tweet from @elsua I found my way to an excellent presentation on Knowledge Management given by John Bordeaux (@JBordeaux, since you ask).

As with many of these things, what you can take away from it depends to some extent on your organisational culture. I found it very interesting, particularly the view on

Basic information sharing infrastucture – just do it!

    Enterprise search
    Democratic web publishing
    Social media! Everything 2.0
  • Image Credit: I am K.E.B.

  • Written by SteveEllwood

    February 1st, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    Weighing Contributions and Participation

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    stairs

    Should we reward participation?

    Is adding useable knowledge to your employer useful? Should it be part of your actual job?

    If it was part of your job, how would you measure it? Should you?

    To save time, I think the right answers are Yes; Yes; Yes; Various ways; Yes

    Why ask the question now?

    As my interest in Social media and wikis has risen over the last year or so, I’ve watched JP talk about social software in the enterprise (many links), and recently been delighted when my firm started the nascent internal social networking, announced publicly by my colleague Richard Dennison

    There’s a fair amount of wiki use within the firm, and I like them – despite my ongoing discussion with another colleague Sandy Blair.

    We’ve now got an excellent WordPress instance running internally – I think I accidentally publicly announced that, shortly before the official announcement. I like that too, particularly how easy it is to search. I’m still amused that Sandy ranks first for “Glitter Glue” within BT.

    We have had a BTpedia – an enterprise wide information wiki for some time.

    It’s a source of some mild pleasure that I’ve contributed 0.25% of the content (including some of the most edited/updated articles) although I’m .00125% of the workforce.

    This stuff is really taking off, internally

    Why the fuss about job descriptions/measuring etc?

    One reason that is suggested for non-participation in wikis/social media is the “not real work” argument. People express concern that their management will think they are slacking if they add to wikis/blogs.

    Make adding to corporate knowledge part of people’s jobs, with some sort of weighting to it, and people *may* be more willing to do it

    As far as measuring goes, until we move to a more Deming driven organisation, you have to show what and how you contribute. Measuring something about your contributions might provide that.

    What should we measure

    As is often the case, I’m again somewhat beaten to the point by Richard, who in his excellent recent post says

    Leadership will be a combination of willingness to engage and connect, and the value of those engagements and connections to the community of users and to the complete enterprise ecosystem. Leadership won’t be about power but influence. And, value to the ecosystem will be measured in terms of contribution rather than achievement

    he then highlights

    Everyone in a enterprise ecosystem will need to understand that while every perception/view is equally valid, they are not of equal importance… Importance will be a combination of that inferred by the enterprise (as currently happens) and that inferred by the community (willingness to connect/engage and value of those connections/engagements as measured by the community).

    To me, that suggests a combination of

    • objective measure – perhaps a combination of separate views, incoming links, other citations, and maybe number of comments/edits
    • subjective measures – post ranking/karma awards

    What do you think should be measured in Enterprise Social Media?

    Picture Credit Capt Kodak

    Written by SteveEllwood

    June 23rd, 2008 at 1:34 pm