Bookmarks for April 5th from 12:55 to 15:05

Social business pinboard links for April 5th, syndicated automagically:

  • References+ von Siemens BT: Die Fallstudie auf e20cases – References+ ist eine Web-Anwendung zum weltweiten Austausch von Wissen, Erfahrungen und Best-Practices innerhalb des Siemens-Intranets. Nicht die IT-Anwendung als solche, sondern die derzeit ca. 8.100 Mitglieder umfassende Nutzer-Community bildet den Hauptfokus zum effizienten Wissensaustausch. Im Sinne von „Social Networking“ möchte References+ Siemens-Mitarbeitende über organisatorische, hierarchische und geographische Grenzen hinweg vernetzen und diese zur direkten Kommunikation untereinander animieren. Es kann beobachtet werden, dass der dadurch initiierte Wissenstransfer nicht nur über die Anwendung, sondern auch parallel dazu über rein bilaterale Kommunikation stattfindet.
  • Collaborative BPM: Key components for success – TIPS FOR SUCCESS WITH COLLABORATIVE BPM In terms of managing the human element, Palmer says it is vital to have someone to assist the process. But he emphasizes that the person filling that role should function as a facilitator, rather than as a dictator. “You will never achieve a situation where everyone is equal in the process, but you need someone to focus on democratizing it as much as possible,” he says.
  • Innovative initiatives and challenges on management – 1- Eliminate the pathologies of the formal hierarchy
    2- Redefine the work of leadership
    3- Reduce fear and increase trust.
    4- Expand and exploit diversity
    5- Expand the scope of employee autonomy.
    6- Create an internal market for ideas, talent and resources

    These are some of the challenges that will be released every day if we want that the ideas overcome barriers due to its implementation. The bet on creativity has to be done and win.

  • Netz-IQ: In der Gruppe intelligenter als einzeln | doubleYUU GmbH & Co. KG – Auf der einen Seite kluge Gruppe, auf der anderen Seite der tumbe Mob? Wie ist diese Diskrepanz zu erklären? Für ihre Untersuchung nutzten die Forscher einen Intelligenztest, der auf abstrakt logischem Denken basiert, die soziale Intelligenz wird also nicht  gemessen. Daher lässt sich die vermeintliche Gruppenintelligenz nicht auf gesellschaftliche Fragen übertragen. Das Web 2.0, in diesem Fall Facebook, bietet vielen die Möglichkeit als „Opinion Leader“ aufzutreten und Gruppen zu bilden. Diese Gruppen sind zwar ähnlich, wie in der Untersuchung von Microsoft, homogen; befassen sich aber mit Fragestellung bei denen es nicht darum geht logisch zu denken sondern zwischen gesellschaftlich falsch und richtig zu entscheiden. Das ist in der Gruppe genauso komplex, wie für eine einzelne Person, egal ob off- oder online.
  • CK2C Communities Guide – home – Capitalizing Knowledge, Connecting Communities (CK2C) Communities Manual Welcome! CK2C and have developed this online manual to support communities and collaboration. CK2C is a US Agency for International Development project to strengthen knowledge sharing and learning in natural resources management. We have compiled the resources on this site from the US Agency for International Development , building from the "Communties@USAID Technical Guide" and other sources, as a one-stop manual for starting, maintaining and closing down online communities. It is a work in progress and we are looking for feedback. For comments or to request permission to edit pages – please write to

Upcoming, part 1: European Creativity Dialogue @ Stuttgart


Today it’s a day of conferencing, I’m going to the European Creativity Dialogue event, which is part of the “Kreativraum” week in Stuttgart. Looks pretty promising, especially as the afternoon is planned to be a much more open and interactive style thing than practiced normally at regular conferences: The organizers plan for an integrated afternoon break out session, to foster the dialogue with and among the participants:

The afternoon session therefore starts off with short statements by selected speakers as an introduction to the intensive workshops on the issues of start-up support, IPR and linking the Creative Industries with the wider economy. The World Café method ( used for these workshops gives the participants the opportunity to go through several 20-minute-long thematic sessions of their choice, network with other participants and bring in their own experiences – all along the overall topic “Towards new growth models for the Creative Industries? Visions, Strategies, Actions”

I think this is a great idea, and am looking forward to discuss issues like

– What are the impacts and challenges of current Intellectual Property laws on new digital business models?
– IP challenges in production and commercialisation of software and games – how to make real money with virtual goods?
– Open Source Software – a non-profit charity or serious business? Who benefits?

and especially

– Which tools from the creative sphere could foster innovation in other industries?
– How can the dialogue between the Creative Sector and other industries be fostered?

Got some ideas, and some ideas about relevant principles, methods and tools – it would be great if I could float some of them in a relaxed athmosphere and get some feedback.


Symbiotic relationship between Web 2.0 and the Enterprise

Nice presentation by Shiv Singh of AA | Razorfish on the blurring between the (at first sight disparate) worlds of social networks in the enterprise and Enterprise 2.0. There are at least 5 reasons why it is a symbiotic relationship:

1. Facebook enters the Enterprise
2. Principles of Trust everywhere
3. Big Ideas & Little Ideas matter
4. Social Graphs serve as a bridge
5. Organizations have changed

Well, exactly my point about the importance of informal organization, when the collaboration infrastructure that’s available (determines ?) supports and complements “levels of feasible autonomy”, an autonomy that’s needed to fully leverage the capabilities of knowledge workers (and their creativity, their potentials to explore weak ties in their social graphs, their chances to float little ideas with potential, and more). So, while we shouldn’t neglect the nice things we can do with Enterprise mashups, SaaS, “the cloud” and all, this is technology at the heart. Yes, there are more areas where Web 2.0 in the Enterprise may help in reaching growth and resilience and Dion is giving a concise rundown. But many interesting things are related to the social fabric of the Enterprise 2.0, and Shiv Singh is reminding us about that.

ps. Shiv’s implementation lifehack (“People don’t start collaborating on the first day. You first need to provide context & content and champion entrepreneurship before fuelling participation.”) has me agreeing only halfway. Sorry, but to me entrepreneurship as characteristic of organizational culture is more of a journey than a starting point, nothing bad about this – you may very well change your organizational culture with 2.0 as driver of change. Not all pieces of an organizational culture need to be in place for good results.

A mixed bag of tabs …

… with some interesting stuff I found but can’t really blog about, at least not yet, I will see how much time I get next week when LeWeb is in full swing …

  • Wharton says what we should do when the times are getting rough: innovate. Well, yes, no point in playing safe these days, rather use the downturn to trigger serious change. A good idea (like supporting more efficient collaboration and teamwork with enterprise social software solutions) stays a good idea after all. A sense of urgency may just be what is needed to overcome some of the remaining resistance …
  • Kathy Harris of Gartner collects some thoughts on principles and actions to foster and increase creativity, like rapid knowledge and idea sharing, effective information management, listening to the customer, visualizing concepts and information relationships and to develop deep analysis and analytical skills (good list, competing on analytics gets missed upon too often).
  • Bruce adds some words of wisdom and a reality check warning the overly collaboration optimists, and while I agree that participation inequality is no real problem, I am more optimistic for enterprise wikis that have a clear goal and that support a dedicated group of people. That’s what gets wikis flying – a group of people that care and invest themselves into wiki gardening, motivating and educating (yet, wikis can do a great job as information platform even when “most people contribute nothing”, but that’s not the best they can do).
  • Ted Schadler blogs about extranet collaboration platforms, collects some (infra-)structural problems that must be solved and proposes in the comments his “working model for an extranet collaboration platform toolkit”. Seems like a pretty complete offering to me, at least in “advanced mode”. Well, I think that these are good and valid elements of an (extranet) collaboration toolbox, but I doubt that all of them will and must be used in parallel. Individual tool usage in Enterprises is highly dependant of the context, and “tool inflation” won’t help. It’s changed methods and practices of collaboration that do the trick, not tool A vs. tool B. Shines a little light on the “best of breed” vs. “integrated suite” debate too I guess.

Collaboration Techniques that really work – Lisa Reichelt @ Web 2.0 Expo Europe

Some notes on the first session at the Tuesday workshop session at Web 2.0 Expo Europe: “Collaboration Techniques that really work” with Leisa Reichelt. I really enjoyed the workshop, it was both easy going and immensely interesting. I went there to learn about new working patterns and methods, and learn about how to adopt these to my consulting practice.

We started off with all participants presenting themselves, at a minimum three tags were said. I got the impression of a pretty mixed crowd, i.e. there were developers, journalists, designer, start-uppers, business developers – and even one or two big Co guys too – mainly with an european background.

OK, here we go:

  • Collaboration = working together, especially with the enemy 😉
  • Collaboration ain’t inviting a bunch of people to a meeting at the beginning of a project
  • Collaboration ain’t working separately on the same project, yes, it’s all about the „actually working together“, not just contributing bits to a pot

Well, we all agreed that good collaboration is rare, it’s percveived as somehow fluffy, even when the benefits are so obvious. Some reasons:

  • good for team building & morale
  • good for communication
  • support and build up cross disciplinary skills and insight
  • more heads, eyes, perspectives enrich our work
  • we build up team & shareholder buy in
  • it’s fun too, yes, fully acknowledge this – people are social animals, we like it to be together with people we like, and with people that have energy and commitment (for the project)

If we do it right we can

  • turn stakeholders or customers into collaborative partners
  • build collaboration into project methodology – i.e. collaborate regularly with your project team
  • collaborate with your peers & invite other expert perspectives – Leisa offered us this good idea of inviting “wildcard collaborators” from the outside, they help us to think tangentially and integrate new perspectives

Ok, then, when to collaborate?

  • at the beginning of a project, but not JUST at the beginning
  • when you’re stuck, i.e. for trouble shooting and problem solving (this is collaborating with a narrow focus)
  • when you’re looking for inspiration (yes, wide focus)
  • regularly, well, it must be trained …

What kind of tools make sense?

  • people (the right ones!), i.e. people that like to collaborate
  • sticky notes & pens, whiteboards/ flip charts
  • fun stuff as stimuli
  • sugar in the afternoon (sic!, give them sweets to keep them alert and productive)
  • an objective (well, I know this is not exactly a tool, but close enough in Leisa’s line of arguing, agreed)

Later on we ventured into techniques that make brainstorming work, i.e. right people, preparation, „the rules“, the tools and the environment. Some noteworthy points are the Importance of a good facilitator and the aligning along useful rules, like e.g.

  • what is the problem / question?
  • we need to appoint a facilitator & a scribe
  • listen more than you talk (this can be really hard, it’s easy to dominate the group when you’re outspoken and have a deep interest in the ideas)
  • listen for your own ideas, but also add value to other peoples ideas
  • suspend judgement

One very important rule is “NO QUESTIONS”, good one but nothing new here. I actually liked the second “lifehack”, i.e. demand that any of the contributed  ideas must start with the words: „I wish …“ or „how to …“ as this is helping in going from an idea to a story. Giving you a roundup of our group experience, dealing with ideas for a pizza restaurant is rather hard, so it pass on this one.

Well, second part of the workshop dealt with the KJ method for consensus, i.e.

1. determine the focus question
2. get „opinions“ / „ideas“ onto sticky notes
3. affinity sort into groups (likeness, clustering)
4. name groups
5. vote on group importance (three votes)
6. rank groups (two by two)

Some hints: a) if nobody votes for a group throw it away, you can get there later if you want b) rank them via counts of votes, then put the winner group besides the second group and discuss which is better (well, you basically apply some kind of bubble sort to this, finally you reach a list sorted by perceived importance) and c) in the voting stage it’s basically about discussing these things out, even when in the end it can be necessary to resolve deadlocks by voting again.

In the discussion we shortly talked about whether we can do this online. Well, yes, sort of an issue. But I agree that it’s hard to do this with offshore teams (I guess that is not so much about distance, than about cultural differences), so while technically speaking you can do it, it’s never going to be like the F2F-situation. Moreover, the hassle involved in getting the people together is so much worth it (side benefits like connectedness, understanding, team building, …) and basically making it a lot easier later on to do more on technical platforms and with online tools.

By the way, the room was packed with people I know and dig, let me see: Peter Bihr, Stefan Nitzsche, Jodi Church-Wagner, Christian Heller, Johannes, Hans Dorsch, Jan Tißler, Igor Schwarzmann and Henning Grote. Johannes did some live-blogging, as well as Jodi, but I guess that there will be more write-ups soon. Moreover there’s the Twitter Backchannel with the tag w2eb_ux and w2eb respectively, check out e.g. Twemes. And Leisa said that she’s going to put her slides up on Slideshare, probably in a Web 2.0 Expo group  …

Web 2.0 Expo Europe 2008

Starting into day 2 of BarCamp Berlin 3 – creativity and courage

Via Diego – a full quote (yes, this is something I don’t do regularly but it’s so fitting) of John Maeda:

“To create is to potentially embarrass oneself in front of others. It is about the courage to be oneself and to be seen as oneself. Putting ink to a page, or pressing one’s fingers against clay, or typing a line of computer code, or blowing glass and realizing mistake. Or success. With everyone watching. But most importantly, you.

So it dawned upon me how important it is to be creative. Because it means you have within you infinite capacity to experiment. You are unafraid to go somewhere new because you are creating a new thought process about your own creativity. You know that if you stop and no longer challenge yourself, you cease to be creative. You become still, silent, and the bow no longer connect with the strings and music is not made. And you do not exist. You show you do not have the courage to exist.

Creativity is courage. The world needs more fearless people that can influence all disciplines to challenge their very existence. Creativity is reflection aimed not at yourself, but at the world around you.”

Why do I quote this thing? At the moment there’s the Sunday round of session proposals going on at BarCampBerlin 3 – and all of the people up on stage are exhibiting courage and creativity, using the BarCamp space for experimentation and more.

And only in case you’re asking, I might be proposing the follow-up to yesterday’s session of mine (yes, writeup and slides are coming).BarCamp Berlin 3