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Strategic Communities of Practice


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Slides for an online webinar I did for The Nature Conservancy November 8, 2012. The recording can be found here:

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Strategic Communities of Practice

  1. 1. StrategicCommunitiesof PracticeWhat should we be paying attention to,doing and valuing? Nancy White Full Circle Associates
  2. 2. Welcome! Write your name beneath a chair and get comfortable!Choconancy’s chairs
  3. 3. Where we develop a way todescribe our work withcommunitiesPART 1: BASICVOCABULARY
  4. 4. What we care about DOMAIN What and how Who cares we do things about it together COMMUNITY about it PRACTICEPractical hint: all three of these “legs” change over time. The trick is not to have allthree changing at the same time. That can be very destabilizing for a community!
  5. 5. Tech +Social:Technology hasfundamentallychanged how we canbe together
  7. 7.  Meets needs of sponsors,leaders and members What we Broad enough to attract care Focused enough to matter aboutin our work Often shifts over time What we Who cares do Drives the “who” and the about it together about it“what we do”
  8. 8. What We Care About: What are we about? What is our identity? What is the significance?  To our Organization  To us as individuals
  9. 9. PracticalPurposePoints Is it clear? Is it sharable? Is it inviting?  to teams  individuals Is it reasonable? Is it negotiable?
  10. 10.  It relates to my identity Connects me to other What wepeople “like me” care aboutHolds sufficient diversity People who have time& attention to engage Who What we do Involves cares together about itrelationships about it
  11. 11.  Activities What we  Content people care about use, create & share  How people engage with each What we other to learn/do Who cares do thingsabout it together about it  How people apply what they learn in the community back at their work
  12. 12. How are you feeling right now? Draw…
  13. 13. How to draw faces? Check out Austin Kleon and Dave Gray
  14. 14. How are you feeling right now? Draw…LET‟S LOAD UP A WHITE BOARD ANDTRY…
  15. 15. AFTER!
  16. 16. … meetings … open-ended … projects conversation… content … access to publishing Community expertise activities oriented to … … individual … relationships participation … community cultivation … context Base material from: Digital Habitats: Stewarding technology for communities © 2009 Wenger, White, and Smith
  17. 17. Community Name: KM4Dev Once a year and only about global knowledge sharing network … meetings 10% do/can participate. Email list is core of … open-ended community activity conversation … projects When funding allows. E.G.Community knowledge wiki, supporting ShareFaircontent management systemto bring together resources. … content … access to publishing expertise activities oriented to … Informally via the email list With only one meeting a by asking/answeringyear, large size and questions.diversity, KM4Devfocuses on enablingindividual participation. Relationships mostly via meetings and core group. … individual Strongly participation external – all … relationships resources public/shared. While everyone pays … community Base material from: attention to the cultivation … context Digital Habitats: Stewarding technology for community, no communities © 2009 Wenger, White, and Smith centralized efforts…
  18. 18. Monthly meetings with Example: The Environmental … meetings everyone at the university Resource Network concerned about the environment, shared calendars Bump into another … open-ended member? Have a conversation … projects conversation, emails Awareness events, orientation for environmental student groups, workshops Blog, website,… content … access to expertise activities oriented to … Inviting experts to monthly meetings/events/workshopAnyone with an interest in the senvironment can be a memberbut the network targets activestudent groups, rss Twitter, Facebook, email list, member directories… individual participation Public. Minutes are shared. Network is … relationships Members connected accountable to all … community students who pay a … context through a shared levy interest cultivation Base material from: Digital Habitats: Stewarding technology for communities, © 2009 Wenger, White, and Smith
  19. 19. ERN and KM4Dev-ers … meetings … open-ended conversation … projects… content … access to publishing expertise activities oriented to … … relationships… individual participation … community Base material from: Digital Habitats: Stewarding technology for cultivation … context communities © 2009 Wenger, White, and Smith
  20. 20. Where we pay attentionto our stakeholders…PART 2:ENGAGEMENTFROM3 PERSPECTIVES
  21. 21. Three strategic Mitigation/Adaptation Strategic Vulnerability/Resilienceperspectives: Value Measurable/accountable Communities and… Strategic Options the broader strategic continuum Leadership Strategic Design repertoire Practices Life or death practices Measurable
  22. 22. Three stakeholderperspectives: Sponsors Facilitators and Leaders Members
  23. 23. Three stakeholder Strategic goals Strategic goalsperspectives: Resources Resources Sponsors M & EE M& Results Results Facilitators and Role & & Role Leaders tasktask clarity clarity Feedback Feedback Purpose Purpose Members Ease Ease Value Value
  24. 24. Sponsors  Strategic goals Sponsor  Resource provision s  Monitoring & evaluation  Communication of results Facilitators and Leaders Members
  25. 25. Poll #2: What might be some ofthe intended and unintendedimpacts of sponsors oncommunity engagement?
  26. 26. Facilitators &Leaders Sponsors  Role clarity  Task clarity Facilitators  Feedback and Leaders Members
  27. 27. What does your communityleadership look like online?Put your ideas in the chat…
  28. 28. Members Sponsors Facilitators and Leaders  Clarityof purpose  Ease of use  Efficient of time Members
  29. 29. Bridging AcrossPerspectives Sponsors Facilitators and Leaders Members
  30. 30. What is the magic sauce?PART 3: ROLES&FRAMEWORKS
  31. 31. • discover &enable people to…appropriate useful technology • be in and use communities & networks (people) • express their identity • find and create content • usefully participate
  32. 32. facilitatorscommunity leaderstechnology stewards network weaversIndependent thinkers curators moderatorsFor example see:
  33. 33. Mendazibal:6 NetworkFunctions • Filters • Amplifiers • Convenors • Facilitators • Investors • Community builders
  34. 34. FAO‟s“Nine Keys to a SuccessfulThematic Knowledge Networks
  35. 35. Design forConnection Don Tapscott
  36. 36. Facilitation & Management
  37. 37. Tom’s Analysis• Membership growth slows significantly – Community membership grew 62% from January to July at a average clip of 55 new members per week. From July to December, the membership only grew 13% at an average clip of 20 members per week. This is a fall-off of more than 63% on a week to week basis.• Number of visits drop 60% - The number of visits from January through July averaged more than 1,300 per week. For the second half of the year, average visits dropped nearly 60% to an average of 522 per week.• Number of pages viewed per visit drops 22% - Not only did the number of visits drop, the number of pages per visit also decreased by 22% with the average pages per visit going from 3.76 to 2.95.• Time on site decreases by 33% – Driven by the fewer page views, the time on site in minutes during active management was 3:38 vs. 2:37 after July which is a 1:19 or 33% decrease.• Fresh activity on the site since August has been pretty nonexistant as well – just 10 new blog posts, 4 new file uploads, and less than 25 discussion forum questions or comments have been posted.
  38. 38. Glenda Eoyang• Observe. Don‟t waste a good surprise. Pause and wonder when something unexpected arises. It may be the weak signal foreshadowing something important to come.• Connect. Nothing co-evolves in isolation. The key is connecting in inquiry with the environment, with current and historical patterns, and with other thoughtful people.• Question. Our assumptions blind us to the world around and lock us into our long-held problems and their failed solutions. A good question can break through the expected to discover the possible.• Try it out. Of course expectations based on past experience will make us question anything we havent experienced. To see something new, we really have to see it. Try a new idea out, see what happens, adjust and try again. We call this adaptive action. Reward thoughtful risk taking.
  39. 39. Balancing the Formal and the Informal• From :• Formal programmatic efforts to change behaviors work mostly on the rational side of human behavior• Informal experiential efforts can capture the emotional side• Programmatic change takes more time& costs more and encounters more resistance than "viral" change• You need both over time• A "viral" effort usually begins with a few respected "master motivators”• Insights & approaches of the motivators work best in experiential settings• Experiential momentum sustained informally & formally• The most important lesson: importance of cross-organization energy & its dependence on the informal
  40. 40. Community Maturity Model TM Stage 1 Stage 2 Stage 3 Stage 4 Hierarchy Emergent Community Networked Community Familiarize & Strategy Listen Participate Build Integrate Command & Leadership Control Consensus Collaborative Distributed Culture Reactive Contributive Emergent Activist Community Defined roles & Integrated roles & None Informal Management processes processes Content & Formal & Some user Community Integrated formal Programming Structured generated created content & user generated content Policies & No Guidelines for Restrictive social Flexible social Inclusive Governance UGC media policies media policies Consumer tools Consumer & self- Mix of consumer & „Social‟ functionality Tools used by service tools enterprise tools is integrated individuals Metrics & Activities & Behaviors & Anecdotal Basic Activities Measurement Content Outcomes
  41. 41. Short term, Explicit purpose Calendar of events, often associated with an event Starts, works, finishes. focused Defined resources Defined membership Broad, Information aggregation or Requires long term commitment to content creation and curation sourcecontent as Defined resources Little member decision making May not stimulate individual engagement, but lots of visits. Little member “ownership” or attractor association (identity) Small group tries something Can be a source of innovation Small Often emerges out of events People are attracted and join that can then be more formally supported and scaled. May not align with sponsor goals. Lookexperiments Structure emerges from experiments Often little/no resources for phase change to more structure.
  42. 42. • Go forwardMaturity • Iterating/refining • End • Content capture • Diversification • Sub communitiesGrowth • More roles • New and Old members • On-boarding • Core/periphery • Structure • Small, structuredLaunch • Open, emergent • Core members • Key events
  43. 43. Measure!Wenger, Trayner & de Laat Promoting and assessing value creation in communities and networks: a conceptual framework – Immediate Value (what happened) – Potential Value (what was produced) – Applied Value (what difference did it make) – Realized Value (impact) – Reframing Value (what‟s changed?)
  44. 44. Measure
  45. 45. Next? Talk, write, Skype, Tweet @NancyWhite Some rights reserved by Eleaf