Friday, December 29, 2006

Riding the Next Talent Wave

John Baldoni, in a recent CIO Magazine article Get Ready to Ride the Nexter Wave suggests the following five strategies to "live with" this next generation of workers:

  • Get used to them

  • Embrace their tech-savvy orientation

  • Tap into their aspirations

  • Roll with the tide

  • Instill discipline

  • Baldoni goes on to describe this worker:

    Google is a way of life, not simply a search engine. It is the source of information for many things global as well as local. Instant communications is a necessity; these folks are connected wirelessly 24/7. Empowerment is an expectation; I can be my own boss. Flexibility is an entitlement. That is, you conform to me, or I’m gone.

    --PBS’s Generation Next Series

    What needs to change from a Training & Development perspective to engage this new type of learner?

    Wednesday, December 13, 2006

    MIT Weighs in on Collective Intelligence

    Citing the work of MIT's Center for Collective Intelligence (CCI) and best-selling book The Wisdom of Crowds by James Surowiecki, CIO Magazine has an interesting article MIT Puts Its Mind to Collective Intelligence where they explain MIT's desire to study how individuals harness technology to act intelligently.

    There are people who think that collective intelligence is magic, and if you just add it, it'll make everything wonderful.

    --Thomas Malone, CCI Director

    What do you do when the "crowd" is wrong?

    Tuesday, December 12, 2006

    Social Networking and Productivity/Satisfaction

    In a recent article from Workforce Performance Solutions, I agree with the author's assertion and title that Strong Social Relationships Increase Productivity, Job Satisfaction.

    As we wrestle with this topic as it relates to technology, what is your reaction to the following quote: social networking platforms go a long way toward introducing people and getting them to work together, but strategically planned events and meetings are the best way to encourage true cooperation.

    It's the classic chicken/egg question:

    Do we need to meet and interact face-to-face before technology can be leveraged? Or, can we leverage technology first?

    How do we accommodate the growing number of telecommuting workers?

    Wednesday, December 06, 2006

    Social Networking as a Learning Tool

    I recently ran across an article from CLO Magazine which is worth wrestling with. After you read the CLO article, I am interested in your thoughts on the following:

  • Do you believe this "socially motivated Internet activity" has implications to the CLO?

  • In the article, Alterman says "social networking as a learning tool has to be fun." Do you agree/disagree?

  • How do you envision the empowerment sites like MySpace, YouTube, etc. have conditioned users will play in an organization that tends to want to monitor and measure what is said?
  • Monday, November 27, 2006

    Friends at Work

    I recently read an interesting book that reminded me of a colleague-Wayne-who opened my eyes to the importance of meaningful connections in the workplace and how this can positively impact workplace climate and culture.

    The book Vital Friends by Tom Rath challenges long-held assumptions people have about their relationships. And the team's landmark discovery — that people who have a "best friend at work" are seven times as likely to be engaged in their job — is sure to rattle the structure of organizations. This research and subsequent assessment from the Gallup Organization reveals eight vital friendship roles in your work and life.

  • Builder

  • Companion

  • Connector

  • Collaborator

  • Energizer

  • Mind Opener

  • Navigator

  • Champion

  • Based on this reading and the recent blog Social Networking: How do we become Friends? GK raised several questions, which may merit some further dialog:

    When considering how technology is used in the context of Social Networking, how would you answer the following questions:

  • How does one build this sense of sincerity using technology? What are some examples?

  • How does one connect with another using technology? What are some examples?

  • How do we create a safe environment for people to give and take opinions within a SN technology? What are some examples?

  • For me the bottom-line question is do we believe a culture of friendship at work makes a difference, and if yes:
  • What role should the organization take in fostering these relationships? and

  • What role does technology play?
  • Wednesday, November 15, 2006

    Prairie Doggin'

    Anyone who has worked in a "modern" office environment can appreciate the phenomenon that occurs with workers and their cubicles, especially when they are trying to solve a problem new to them: prairie doggin'

    This is when an employee pops up to see if their neighbor has a tactic or solution that would help them solve their problem.

    In a recent article in the Harvard Business Review, The Cost of Knowledge (November 2006), Al Jacobson and Laurence Prusak make the following statement:

    "'Knowledge management' in organizations has become synonymous with 'knowledge searching.' Web crawlers and other data-mining programs swarm over terabytes of documents and e-mails looking for clues that can help connect information seekers with sources. Clever icons adorning desktops promise to instantly deliver users to the right expert."

    They go on to state that by the year 2010 the sale of enterprise information-search systems will grow, tripling its current value to $2.6 billion.

    The breakdown by how "knowledge workers" spend their time include:

  • 6.2% scheduling meetings with experts

  • 10.2% searching for knowledge

  • 37.7% eliciting knowledge from experts (aka prairie doggin')

  • 45.9% adapting knowledge gained

  • How do some of the new tools introduced by social networking technologies (e.g., instant messaging, blogging, podcasts) factor in to the "daily workflow" of information searching, analysis and application? In other words, do these help "speed" up the search for information and solutions?

    Social Networking: How do we become Friends?

    I recently read an article in Psychology Today (DEC 2006) about friendship by Karen Karbo. In light of our discussion on social networking, I would be interested in your reaction to a couple of statements from this article:

  • The conventional wisdom is that we choose friends because of who "they" are. But it turns out that we actually love them because of the way they support who "we" are.

  • "Can I talk to you for a minute?" may well be the very words you say to someone who is about to become a friend.

  • We feel closer to people we do favors for. The fondness toward your yoga class buddy will continue to grow if she asks for a ride home.

  • A friend with too many opinions about our wardrobe, our partner, or our taste in movies and art may not be a friend for long.

  • Reactions? How does this play out when you introduce technologies of phone, blogs, podcasts, etc.?

    Friday, November 10, 2006

    Thursday, November 09, 2006

    Social Networking: Where?

    One used to think of the playground, lunch room, gym, or coffee house as the places to network. With the introduction of blogs, podcasts, and the ever-present cell phone, the next question is where are people networking today?

    Wednesday, November 08, 2006

    Social Networking: Why?

    Why do people participate in various social networks online? What is their motivation?

    Tuesday, November 07, 2006

    Social Networking: Who?

    Based on the definition "social networking is the use of a website to connect with people who share personal or professional interests, place of origin, education at a particular school, etc." [Webster's New Millennium™ Dictionary of English, Copyright © 2003-2005], my next question is who do you see getting involved? Is it limited by generation (aka kids, pre-teens, college-age), personality type, communication style or other?

    How would you describe the type of person who leverages technology to connect with others?

    Sunday, November 05, 2006

    Social Networking: What is it?

    The first question is a "what" question--future questions to include who, where, why, when, and how.

    When you hear the phrase "social networking" what comes to mind and what is included.

    You may want to check out the links on the right had side of the screen for a sampling of popular and new sites.