Friday's Finds for 2011

Every Friday I review what I’ve noted on Twitter and post a wrap-up of what caught my eye. I do this as a reflective thinking process and also in order to take some of what I’ve learned and put it on a platform I can control, my blog. I call it Friday’s Finds and here are some of the more notable finds during 2011.

Blogging

Blogging for knowledge workers: incubating ideas; by @mathemagenic

Blogging is primarily known as an instrument for personal publishing, reaching a broad and often unknown audience without pushing content on them. While blogging is personal, most of its advantages are the result being part of an ecosystem, where weblogs are connected not only by links, but also by relations between bloggers. Those relations do not appear automatically: it takes time and effort before one can enjoy social effects of blogging. To sustain blogging before those effects appear it is important to find a personally meaningful way to use a weblog.

@euan: Information Fertiliser: untidy information, like blogs, makes better knowledge fertiliser:

Finding the good stuff is one of the functions of bloggers. Information rag and bone men who curate the weak signal and the long tail. Seeing patterns in the small, the marginal, the messy. This is where those with nerdy curiosity and a good eye can find real value in what others have discarded or not noticed …

Learning

Johnnie Moore: Learning is not a parcel – via @DavidGurteen

Learning is not a FedEx package that you sign for at the door. Learning happens on its own schedule. We often realise the significance of events long after their original impact, and may actually continue to revise what we think the lesson is as our lives unfold.

The Power of Conversations by @charlesjennings

We rarely, if ever, work and learn alone. We reach our goals and contribute to our organisations’ objectives in a social context. In the maelstrom of our digital communications age the need to think ‘socially’ is more important than ever.

@marksylvester – ‘”I can explain it to you, I can’t understand it for you” – via an extremely smart woman we met on Friday.

Failure is only useful if we learn from it – by @TimKastelle

  • Failure is only useful if we learn from it: we often talk about the need to fail in innovation, however, there is only value in failure if it helps us learn.
  • Try to fail as cheaply as possible: the main problem with the Edsel isn’t that it failed – it’s that it failed so expensively. There is a hierarchy of failure, and we need to figure out how to fail as early in the process as possible. One way of doing this is through prototyping.

Networks

Value Networks and the true nature of collaboration by @vernaallee (Digital Edition)

The true shape and nature of collaboration is not the social network – it is the value network. Value networks are purposeful groups of people who come together to take action. Value network modeling and analytics reflect the true nature of collaboration with a systemic human-network approach to managing business operations. It shows how work really happens through human interactions, and provides powerful new practices and metrics for managing collaborative work. It provides a way to a) better support non-hierarchical organizations such as cross-boundary teams, and task forces, and b) quickly and effectively model emergent work and complex activities that have multiple variables and frequent exceptions.

Antony Mayfield: “We don’t grasp how magnificently, terrifyingly complex networks are ...” – via @JohnnieMoore

We don’t grasp how magnificently, terrifyingly complex networks are. We like to draw pictures of them and then think we’ve captured their meaning, when they are more like the weather – always changing, hyper-complex. Predictable if you are smart and have a huge amount of data and training, but only to a point and only some of the time. (There’s mileage in that weather forecasting analogy – I’d like to come up with it.

Knowledge

Knowledge Management = experience-sharing NOT information-sharing – Knoco Stories

In most of the training courses I run, I ask the question “where does knowledge come from?”
Always, every time, I get the answer “Experience – Knowledge comes from Experience”. Never does anyone answer “Knowledge comes from Information”.
Never
If you don’t believe me, try it yourself. Ask people “where does knowledge come from”? and see what they say.

“knowledge transfer” is a handy fiction we have created – by @downes

My answer, and it’s a perfectly reasonable and well-research answer, is that nothing is transferred. That the whole idea of “knowledge transfer” is a handy fiction that we have created over the years, as simple folk, to function as shorthand for what we know is a much more complex process.

Probably the best intermediate position a person can attempt here is something like “knowledge replication“. That’s what’s actually happening in a lot of people’s theories. We know that the sending of a message from one person to another involves a state change. The signal (another handy fiction; let me have it for now) crosses through several media en route from sender to receiver. Thus questions of signal integrity arise, the problem of distinguishing signal from noise, and all the rest of it.

Knowledge is constructed, not transferred ~Peter Senge” – via @denniscallahan

Work

@SteveDenning: “The real jobs crisis is that most jobs suck” via @SebPaquet

This is not just a matter of keeping the workers happy. In today’s knowledge economy, the motivation of workers is a key determinant of productivity. The lack of passion in today’s workforce is a fundamental cause of the continuing sharp decline in the performance of the Fortune 500.

Some psychologists have a theory that many of the world’s ills can be blamed on psychopaths in high places.” via @SebPaquet [reminds me of The Gervais Principle]

“Robert Hare, the eminent Canadian psychologist who invented the psychopath checklist, … recently announced that you’re four times more likely to find a psychopath at the top of the corporate ladder than you are walking around in the janitor’s office,” journalist Jon Ronson tells Guy Raz, host of weekends on All Things Considered.

The Job is dying – by @robpatrob [a comprehensive must-read]

But if all you know is the job, how do you get prepared to do well in the new networked world as a freelancer or as a very small business person?

The challenge is mindset. If you have been looked after in a job, what do you know of making your life on your own? Like riding a bike, no book can help you really.

Our advice is to join a co-working space. There you will have access to both the social aspects of a network and you will have the advice and support that you need to do well as a new immigrant to this New World of the Networked Economy.

Resiliency & the Working Smarter Framework: Building on Strengths ~ by @brentmack

As you can see, the role of Management in this model is to tap into or mine the emergent (next) practices stemming from staff collaborations and transform these practices into new tools and processes.

In this type of workspace, the new tools and processes are put into service much faster. It is accepted that rapid change and the complexity of overlapping issues is the norm. Organizations are positioned more on the outer boundaries where change is happening. Management at the bottom of the pyramid supports a work culture where staff use a variety of social media tools that enables effective social learning activities which fuels collaboration and innovation.

 

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