I enjoy it when someone shares a useful tip, tool or resource with me. If they’ve thought carefully about my interests, know what’s relevant to me, and offer it to me in a “place” that’s convenient to me, then it’s a great gift from them. This helps me to think about what and when to share with my team – to do it in a way that my sharing is a contribution and not noise or a burden. I am also very conscious that I am role modelling new behaviours within my organisation, so want to help people to see the potential value in sharing by doing it judiciously and well.
The internal group with whom I work most closely are the Supply Chain Capability Community. The Community includes 12 people in a range of roles who collectively develop, plan and implement initiatives to improve business performance through the technical knowledge and skills of our people. I share links and resources with this group in a variety of ways:
1) Verbally or in email with an individual or small group – a resource relevant to the specific topic or context e.g. an article on why measuring performance impact is more important than ROI shared directly with a team member who was designing a new evaluation approach for a learning program.
2) Posting a link on Twitter and @mentioning specific team members – this works where the team members I want to share with use Twitter (4 out of the 12). I thought I had done this several times, however when I did an advanced search on Twitter for examples I could find only one where I shared an article on leadership styles in different cultures with a team member who does a lot of work in Indonesia.
3) Posting a link or message about a resource on SharePoint newsfeed with a comment about why I am sharing this link – this is useful where the item is of potential value to a larger range of people in the group. In the example I highlight a case study on the 702010 Forum in which we have organisational membership. I don’t share resources in this way very often (despite there being a lot of relevant resources I could share) and have just resolved to add this to my daily sharing habits. The other thing I could improve is to limit number of characters in post so people don’t need to click on ‘Show more’ to see the whole post, especially if links are at the end of the post.
4) Knowledge sharing sessions with the group during our fortnightly Community teleconferences – we’ve replaced status updates with knowledge sharing and learning discussions in these regular catchup sessions. Format is presentation followed by discussion. Presentations are most commonly on a topic (e.g. Gamification through badges), a work practice (e.g. how we can increase manager support to learners), or report back on ideas from an external event such as a course or a conference. I’ve also written a blog post on a topic with linked resources and asked people to read and reply to questions before the session (example shown is for a discussion on Working Out Loud). Participation in online discussion has been low and the group interacts far better in synchronous discussion than asynchronous (I hope that the Work, Connect and Learn program will help increase online interaction). This is a valuable forum for our team to Work and Learn Out Loud together, and we shall continue to use and fine tune it.
5) Diigo – I set up a Diigo account for the team to use to curate and share online resources. I am the only one who curates on a regular basis; however there are several team members who are comfortable using Diigo for joint research to meet a specific need. Below is an example of curation of research into modern approaches to learning design.
6) “Learning Links” blog posts – I have started to share short collections of resources on a specific topic relevant to the group (e.g Social learning) on our SharePoint blog. I write a short commentary about each resource and any overall themes. As I bookmark items to Diigo I tag them with “LearningLinks” if I think they my be worth including in a post at a later date. My intent had been to do a weekly Links post, but I’ve been erratic so have diarised this. I shall also start posting these collections on my internet blog in case they are useful to others outside my organisation.
Diigo is at the heart of my resource sharing practices, allowing me to bookmark and tag links that I can re-use and share in a range of contexts and ways. Being able to store links in a library that I can access anywhere I have an Internet connection means that I can share good quality resources at the right moment and with the right people to create value rather than generate noise.