It’s uncanny, I read a blog post yesterday by the inspiring Peter Bregman on focusing on one thing when you want to make a change or a difference…less is more. Just now, I realised that I practiced this very thing the other day.
Here are some excerpts from an email exchange I had with our global librarian at work.
LIBRARIAN: I’m really having difficulties finding the time to set up the Library CoP. Can you set it up?
ME: If you like I’d rather assist you guys rather than do it for you.
Do you have someone you can delegate to?
Would you like to start off with a telecon, as I need to know the purpose for your CoP, who the audience/s are
LIBRARIAN: Currently, we have no manpower to even start teleconferencing. But if you don’t have the time either, I understand.
Based on our list of projects, CoP is currently a nice to have tool.
ME: Why don’t you send me a blueprint for what you want to achieve, and someone in your team (preferable someone passionate) and I will do our best to help you out.
Why do you want a CoP?
1. A space to learn and share with your team?
2. A place to coordinate tasks and assist/support each other?
3. A place where general people from our work can visit and ask a question, and also subscribe to blogs about current awareness eg. new journals
It can be for all of these, if so, let’s just try one thing first, but we will keep future needs in mind when we design
Who will be the main facilitator?
- this is a person who has time and passion to drive this
- this is not you as you are too busy, but it could be you once it’s up and running
As you know a community is all about conversations in the open (rather than private in email)
- but it can also have a portal element or website feel where you list all your stuff and information
- but you seem to already have an Intranet page for this
If we slowly chip away at it we will get there.
Perhaps I’ll ask this question:
What’s your most pressing issue or process that the community can make better?
Is it 1. learning/sharing, or 2. coordinating/assisting each other, or 3. dealing with your customers
ME: I suggest using the CoP just for your team, so you guys get used to using it, but if your most pressing issue is to get info out to your customers then we can start with that
eg. If you send Journal Table of Contents emails you can publish that in a blog instead and then email the customers the link to the blog.
Even better is if people subscribe, then you don’t have to email some of those people the link to the blog post.
This way the blog will act as an archive, and people can visit it…email is just a private letter box, whereas a blog is an open house
Think of the different email exchanges you have with customers, and the ways you inform customers, and we can re-purpose that using CoP tools