Here’s something I said:
“I really think blogs and the like need to be features of existing products.
(You would think our document management system would have an item comment stream (like Google Docs)…”
This really ties up with Bill Ives’s comments that I’ve quoted on two posts about old KM being both workflow and repository types…the problem being that the workflow types were too rigid so we went elsewhere for these exceptions, and the repository types were out of our flow, not in tune with human behaviour, and as Bill says, “…it became managing knowledge rather than supporting work”
At this stage of KM 2.0 or enterprise 2.0 we have seen people familiarising themselves with these new social tools, and how they are the new exception handler. Instead of using email to get work done because my workflow tools are too rigid, I can now use wiki or a blog for these workarounds, etc…the benefit is openness, transparency, visibility, feedback and evolving…basically pooling our talent.
I think the next phase of KM 2.0 (no, I’m not calling it KM 3.0 or KM 2.5) is going to be where answers to these exceptions will be shared into the flow.
Firstly the idea is for these new social tools to become boring, as said by Clay Shirky.
Secondly we are going to see features of blogs and wikis in existing workflow tools.
Like I said in the quote at the start of this post, we need “blog it” features in our current workflow tools, etc…just like every object has “print this” or “email this”…
Further to this we need our current workflow products (an example is a support database-from users logging calls, to working on calls, to closing the call, to harvesting the unique calls to a solutions page) to be blogified and wikified.
I think along with wikis and blogs as standalone tools, we are going to see our workflow tools incorporate wiki and blog features, but yet it won’t be a blog or a wiki. We will have “post it” buttons on forms that publish fragments from our workflow to other places, yet we don’t have a blog in our workflow, it’s just a form, kind of like an edge feed like publi.sh.
We will perhaps have access to a “edit this” button at stages in our workflow to add/edit notes to a page
eg. you get to a stage of a workflow where the procedures really don’t help you with a clients need, this becomes an exception, but as you get to this stage someone has edited this page and instructed you how to move on with this type of client need. The talent pool is able to share their experiences and know-how right into the workflow…it’s not really a standalone wiki, it’s just a wikified object.
What I like about “edit this’ all over the place is that we don’t have to go to a separate repository (wiki-page) to see if people have shared this type of information before, instead it’s right in our flow, without us even having to think about it.
The current stage of KM 2.0 is that people have a personal interest in sharing their know-how, there’s less resistance, in fact people feel the benefits, and it’s all due to tools with a low barrier to entry, and how they are in tune with human behaviour, just the way we converse offline.
These tools are open and transparent and perpetually evolve content, but similar to KM 1.0 they are still a separate place from our workflow. When we want to know something, we visit a blog or wiki to see if anyone has shared some insight, if we find something relevant, we then go back to our workflow and move to the next stage.
It’s not just about workflows, of course blogs and wikis are used outside of workflows eg. personal blogs, communication blogs, wikipedia’s, wikis for lists, wikis for meetings, wikis for documentation, etc…
I just think the next phase is using features of these tools into our existings workflows, so when we get to dead end, we don’t go elsewhere to find a way to move on, instead the answer is right there. If it’s not, then when you do find an answer you include it in the workflow stage that you are at so the next person will go through the flow like a speed bump rather than a detour.
This is all about the ubiquity of social tools in context of workflows.
[ADDED 30/09/08: In-the-Flow with Acumen Fund]
[ADDED 14/01/08: KM 2.0 : doing your job or giving back to the organisation]