Heisenburg KM

On this site, I’ve implemented multiple blogs (thoughts, essays, updates) – and it’s not because I see many nails for my shiny new hammer.

I’m trying out blogging for a couple of different applications / uses … for example, I’m playing with the updates blog as a test for project status blogging at work. It’s a fairly common request – “please keep us up to date with changes, additions, etc.” – but that can be labor intensive, and I’m looking for a better way.

Of course, the two big problems with this approach is that it

– forces people to pull the information to themselves, vs. having it pushed to their email inbox …

the latter is definitely preferred, and probably would be the most effective, as the “information consumer” base in this instance is generally averse to change (yes, there are some terrific exceptions to this rule, but as a group …)

… and … demands some technical sophistication (or a big training / retooling effort) to get the target audience to have success with RSS feeds

<tangent>A related observation …

Introducing new ways of managing information always seem to bring along new problems we never had before. For example, in our issue tracking system at work, we find that some people are more comfortable with “corresponding”, asking simple questions like “what’s the status of this issue” by adding comments to the discussion thread.

It’s often much easier to check the status by getting up and walking over to the person – plus, the discussion thread, which was intended to be a knowledge capture device, doesn’t get cluttered with non-value adding “are you through yet?” comments.</tangent>

An important thing to keep in mind when introducing new project and knowledge management tools is to keep in mind the technical sophistication and access of the majority of your audience. Don’t get too psyched at the openness / acceptance of the “early adopters”, and don’t attempt to lower the sophistication level of the tool to enable the “laggards”.

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James MacLennan

... is the Managing Partner at Maker Turtle LLC, a digital consultancy focused on creating value in ways that align with your strategy and drive engagement with employees, customers, and stakeholders. He is an active creator, providing thought leadership through on-line & print publications, and public speaking / keynotes.