There’s a few related memes at the moment on learning and familiarising yourself in a new environment or situation, this also applies to methods used in find things and getting things done in your current environment.
Not talking just explicit stuff, but tacit stuff like:
- “didn’t you know, when that happens, you gotta use this workaround”
- “goto Jill, I know she is in IT, but she knows more than anyone about travel medicine”
- “that sort of informal information is stored on this spreadsheet kept in this share drive in this folder, it would be good if we could have it on the Intranet”
- A new employee getting to know the place, the right people and information to get their job done
- Working with a new team
- Mergers and Acquisitions
- Finding the right person, and the right information
This post shows the great value in tapping into the social capital to find the right person and information.
It describes two forms of social behaviour: Lurk-n-Learn, and Connect-n-Collaborate.
Check out the examples in how you get things done, how you find stuff, discover, collaborate, etc…
There are a few screencasts on Lotus Connections, this one I think exemplifies the great power of finding the right people and information based on a participation culture in a social ecosystem…also check out Lotus Greenhouse.
More from Gia:
“You can also include Atlas for Lotus Connections, an add-on asset not included in the license, that does the following:
Visualize and analyze social networks in an organization
Identify the shortest social path to reach someone
Find expertise across extended networks
Visualize and manage personal networks”
Social tools empower the individual to discover and make sense of all the people in our company, without them, each person is losing opportunity in finding a person or their content in helping them get things done. We’ve all heard of re-inventing the wheel syndrome, or, after the fact (”didn’t you know so and so, are an expert who could of helped you”).
Lotus Connections is more than a directory, every person has a profile page, on that page you can read about:
- who they are
- who they report to
- project they have worked on
- communities they are in
- keywords they have tagged themselves with (expert tags)
- keywords others have tagged them with (expert tags)
- latest blog posts, bookmarks
- contact details
You are after an expert in the new technologies in “nuclear reactor design” who know’s the Russian language:
- look up the keyword tag “nuclear” in the expert locator (profiles)
- you find 7 people, and 2 communities about the topic “nuclear”
(it also displays related tags like “decomissioning”, “uranium”)
- you look into each of these 7 profiles and notice 1 of them speak Russian
- you look at their bookmarks (web-pages they have saved, probably when they were researching stuff)
- you look at their blog and see that their latest posts are about new technologies on this topic
(this person is not only an expert, but is up-to-date on the latest methods)
- while you are there you can visit the 2 communities to see discussions, blogs, forums, documents, etc…
(perhaps you may find useful information and people in these communities)
All this without having to be linked by hierarchy or a team, or limited to just the people you know or your office location, or having to broadcast an email…accidental collision some say.
Now every person in the enterprise can find people they need to get things done by leveraging the social capital, this is sure to get the best person for the job, cut down your cycle time, and save you money…no more lost opportunities just because we couldn’t “see through” our organisation.
Not only is Profiles an expert locator, but it connects to the other social components of Lotus Connections, we can find out more about a person: websites they save (bookmarks), what they are up to (blog), communities they are enagaging with, etc…
I guess you can say that profile pages lead to social networks (something Lotus Connections will absorb with its Beehive product), which is how the millennial generation get things done (they really don’t use email, they find it too static).
For a more business perspective check out this presentation, The Business Value Of IBM Social Software.
Contrast this social way of getting things done compared to an Intranet, email and a Document Management System, which environment would you choose