We are still in the GROWTH stage…I’ve still got a few wiki help guides to make, need to further develop my support CoPs, and work on reporting.
Along with this is the usual daily support and maintenance.
And side projects like developing external communities.
I consult with each new CoP, I inform them, I support them, then it’s up to the facilitator to host their CoP.
At any time they can phone, email, IM me, or use the support CoPs (to ask questions and where I share tips), and refer to help guides
The idea here is to train the trainer ie. each CoP facilitator
We have over 50 communities but only half are active, and I’d say about a quarter are really active.
I don’t want to deny new CoPs, but then I don’t want a ghost town.
NOTE: Our CoPs are not temporary group collaboration spaces, these are long term spaces for Business Units, Shared Services and Cross-functional groups. From this you can tell that CoPs is no longer an appropriate descriptor, but it’s something we are used to, but it’s something we are used to, but it’s something we are used to, but it’s something we are used to, but it’s something we are used to, but it’s something we are used to, but it’s something we are used to, but it’s something we are used to
Since we are in the growth stage I don’t have time to consult with each CoP on an ongoing basis…and they need it as CoPs are about facilitating group dynamics, learning new tools, replacing habits…something not all people know about
If I could only train each facilitator each day to transfer these concepts and practice them, then I think their CoPs would have more capacity to improve.
I’m talking about an attention problem…I can’t spread it as far and as deep as I’d like to
I don’t have a team of global facilitators, it’s just me.
If I did I could assign a global facilitator to 10 CoPs each…this way we could do daily ground-zero facilitation with CoP facilitators
NOTE: We do not want to facilitate each CoP, we want to facilitate the facilitators
A team of global facilitators would only be short-term; it’s just to get our stagnant CoPs off the ground…to hold their hand for 6 months.
If all 50 CoPs were tuned, then only a couple of us would be needed to support/maintain, develop, and consult existing and new CoPs
My coping mechanism (currently in development)
- A volunteer facilitator network to help new CoPs…especially handy in a global company operating in various time zones
- A CoPs in Action wiki to highlight how groups are using CoPs in different ways, how they are using tools in various ways, interviews, case studies, recognition, curating content.
This can help immensely as often new CoPs stare at a blank slate, they are not sure how or which way to flex these unstructured tools…they are used to tools designed for a specific purpose, and now suddenly they are the designers
- Monthly webinars on technical skills and participation practices
Where can I add value most? (currently in development)
What about this as an approach…
Simply focus my attention on those CoPs that "get it".
Keep allowing new CoPs to happen and support them, but only go that extra mile on enthusiastic upcoming facilitators and existing thriving CoPs
This way my time and expertise is being used to add value, rather than being spread thinly.
The idea is to create showcase CoPs.
Better to have 10 engaging CoPs, rather than 50 not so engaging.
The showcase CoPs can act as a magnet or attractor for other CoPs to want to be like them.
If this happens then I can eventually take my attention of the showcase CoPs, as they know what they are doing, and pay attention to existing CoPs that are insistently knocking on my door to resurrect participation.
At the moment I have demand for new CoPs, but I want demand for existing CoPs to want to be better
What I like about this approach is that I’m not denying the creation of new CoPs, that can continue as usual, but at the same time most of my time will be focused just on a handful of CoPs
One at a time…