On 12 August I joined an OzLearn Twitter chat about Working Out Loud (WOL). I will update this post with a link to the Storify archive of this chat when it is published. We were fortunate to be joined by Simon Terry who blogs about WOL (amongst other topics).
Bryce Williams initially defined the concept of Working Out Loud as:
Narrating Your Work + Observable Work.
Yet, what practices actually constitute Working Out Loud can be a bit elusive. There was a sense during the OzLearn chat that we were all Working Out Loud already, although which of our practices fell into this category and which didn’t was muddy. One thing there was consensus on is that we each derive benefit from our WOL practices, and that the organisations we work in / with can benefit from widespread adoption of WOL.
It was Simon Terry who brought the groups attention to John Stepper’s idea of Working Out Loud Circles, which he describes as great peer support group. Stepper describes how to implement WOL Circles, and suggests that they could be systematically spread to reap organisational benefits. The idea quickly captured the interest of a number of chat participants and we’ve decided to set up some WOL Circles in Australia.
Each WOL circle consists of 4-5 people who meet for one hour per week over a twelve week period following a structured program. Meetings can be held online or face-to-face. We will use the tool kit contained in John’s soon to be published book. This is not intended to be a program that the OzLearn community ‘manages or ‘controls’ – rather an initiative to provide participants with an opportunity to improve their WOL practices. It will also provide experience with an approach that participants could then use to implement WOL in their organisations.
Participation is open to any interested person who is able to join meetings held in Australian time zones. We will kick off the first circles in late August / early September – as soon as we have enough people and an advance copy of John’s book. If you are interested in joining a circle please leave your name and some way of contacting you (e.g. Twitter, email) in a comment below – or get in touch with me on Twitter or LinkedIn.