Introducing Collaboration Tools? Three Required Personas for Success

When introducing collaboration tools to an organization - creating the corporate intranet, defining project sites in Sharepoint, etc. - there are multiple skills you must master - well, at least get better at. You need to capture the ideas and communicate the data such that your target reader understands what you are trying to convey - but you also have to help them locate it in the first place. Three personas you'll need to adopt, three sets of skills to…

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A Little Too Literal (or, How to Teach Innovation)

Spoiler alert: It can't be taught ... One of the questions I get - and I'm getting this a lot lately - is how to get people to think more analytically, less literally. We need folks to stop focusing on the mechanical task of manipulating reports with Excel just to compute some answers. How about learning to use Excel, Access, and whatever native query / data download tools are available - to pull some data from the system, just to…

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Underwhelming experiences with Google Wave

Took some time today to work with the new communication meme - Google Wave. I wouldn't call it a fundamentally new way to communicate - well, not yet. I think Google is safe to continue with a "preview" label - clearly not even "beta" yet. No horrible bugs - at least on the Windows platform - but some obviously missing features. And, I am not all that impressed with the basic idea - it's just a mashup of Google Docs,…

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Training and Learning: A Different POV

The topic was training users for an upcoming project rollout, and the debate (as always) roamed back and forth between "traditional" (classroom training, scripts & workbooks) versus "experiential", pairing existing users with their counterparts (who are new to the system), walking through the basics (screen navigation, terminology, and step-by-step instructions for the most common required tasks). Training methods are a common area of debate and discussion with system implementation folks, and I can make a great case for any and…

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