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Communities of Practice
The Missing Piece of your Agile Organisation
Craft 2017
Emily Webber
@ewebber
emilywebber.co.uk / ...
Have you left an
organisation
because you felt
unsupported?
@ewebber
“Absence of 

support is taken 

as a sign of 

mass rejection”
Matthew D. Lieberman Social: Why our brains
are wired to c...
PhotobyLuisDeliz
‘Sink or swim’ is not a
management
technique to aspire to
@ewebber
Hello. I’m Emily
(and I have a habit)
@ewebber
@ewebber
A Community of practice
“…groups of people who share a
concern or a passion for something
they do and learn how to do it b...
@ewebber
Communities of practice
are really important in
agile organisations
(and other orgs too)
@ewebber
@ewebber
@ewebber
PROGRAMMEPROGRAMME
Photobyjoinash
@ewebber
@ewebber
<homogenous group name> 

are rubbish at ….
@ewebber
PROGRAMME
COMMUNITY
OFPRACTICE
How you do it
Whatyoudo
PROGRAMME
Who is in a
community of
practice?
@ewebber
We all get value from
connecting with people
that do the same thing
that we do
@ewebber
@ewebber
PhotobyTedVanPelt
People need a
support network
@ewebber
PhotobyEmoryMaiden
Learning is done better
when it’s done together
@ewebber
@ewebber
PhotobyRufino
“From observing others
one forms an idea of
how new behaviours
are performed, and on
later occasions...
PhotobyGutsGaming
@ewebber
PhotobyStewartButterfield
There are probably
people in the same
organisation doing 

the same thing
@ewebber
The Knowledge iceberg
@ewebber
The Knowledge iceberg
@ewebber
Who left their
last job within 5
years?
@ewebber
@ewebber
On average,
people move
jobs every
4.4 years
Forbes 2012
@ewebber
When people leave
they take parts of
your organisational brain
PhotobyJonathan
Not collaborating
means missing out on
better things
@ewebber
@ewebber
“Human communities
can develop a sort of
collective intelligence
that is greater than the
members’ individual
int...
@ewebber
“I have been encouraged
to try new things by
hearing about the
experiences of others”
Community of practice member
A community of practice is group of
people who share a concern or passion
and
• support each other
• learn together
• shar...
@ewebber
How can you put it 

into practice?
@ewebber
Membership Influence
Fulfilment
of needs
Emotional
connection
McMillan,D.W.,&Chavis,D.M.(1986)
Sense of community
Community maturity
@ewebber
ENERGYANDVISIBILITY
POTENTIAL
FORMING
MATURING
SELF-SUSTAINING
input needed
The opportunity for a
community to form
@ewebber
POTENTIAL
The community starts to
come together
@ewebber
FORMING
The depth of
connections and
knowledge grows
@ewebber
MATURING
The members take
ownership of the
community
@ewebber
SELF-SUSTAINING
PhotobyChrisAmelung
Have an idea about who
the community is for
and why it exists
@ewebber
PhotobyRufino
Meet often and
regularly to build trust
and connections
@ewebber
PhotobyDennisFreeland
Have the right leaders
in place and make sure
they have time to lead
@ewebber
@ewebber
@ewebber
Community leadership
Distributed community leadership
@ewebber
PhotobyRFrancoisBester
Start sharing stories of
work and day to day
challenges
@ewebber
from silos
to sharing knowledge
to solving shared problems
to using the collective knowledge
of the community to create be...
@ewebber
IllustrationbyTensoGraphics
@ewebber
IllustrationbyTensoGraphics
@ewebber
The magic
IllustrationbyTensoGraphics
Photobyfr4dd
Create a community
charter together.
Include why you exist
and your principles
@ewebber
PhotobyJonathan
@ewebber
@ewebber
https://digital.blogs.coop/2016/09/14/setting-up-communities-of-practice/
Photobyfr4dd
Create a shared
backlog of work
to collaborate on
@ewebber
PhotobyPaulClarke
Vary what you do when
you meet: look inwards,
look outwards, learn new
things, make things better
@ewebb...
Photobyfr4dd
Retrospect regularly
to make sure it keeps
meeting members’
needs
@ewebber
@ewebber
Some things to
remember
Photobyfr4dd
It takes time and effort
to get the best out of
anything
@ewebber
PhotobyLesChatfield
You will need support
from the organisation
(But maybe not right away)
@ewebber
PhotobyRufino
The community will
need to be empowered
to make changes
@ewebber
PhotobyChrisBlakeley
Not everyone will want
to join in and that’s ok
@ewebber
@ewebber
Building Successful
Communities of Practice
Discover How Connecting
People Makes Better
Organisations
tacit.pub/t...
Thank you
Emily Webber
@ewebber
emilywebber.co.uk / tacitlondon.com
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Communities of Practice, The Missing Piece of your Agile Organisation

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Craft Budapest 2017

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Communities of Practice, The Missing Piece of your Agile Organisation

  1. 1. Communities of Practice The Missing Piece of your Agile Organisation Craft 2017 Emily Webber @ewebber emilywebber.co.uk / tacitlondon.com
  2. 2. Have you left an organisation because you felt unsupported? @ewebber
  3. 3. “Absence of 
 support is taken 
 as a sign of 
 mass rejection” Matthew D. Lieberman Social: Why our brains are wired to connect @ewebber
  4. 4. PhotobyLuisDeliz ‘Sink or swim’ is not a management technique to aspire to @ewebber
  5. 5. Hello. I’m Emily (and I have a habit) @ewebber
  6. 6. @ewebber
  7. 7. A Community of practice “…groups of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly.” Wenger-Trayner @ewebber
  8. 8. @ewebber Communities of practice are really important in agile organisations (and other orgs too)
  9. 9. @ewebber
  10. 10. @ewebber
  11. 11. @ewebber PROGRAMMEPROGRAMME
  12. 12. Photobyjoinash @ewebber
  13. 13. @ewebber <homogenous group name> 
 are rubbish at ….
  14. 14. @ewebber PROGRAMME COMMUNITY OFPRACTICE How you do it Whatyoudo PROGRAMME
  15. 15. Who is in a community of practice? @ewebber
  16. 16. We all get value from connecting with people that do the same thing that we do @ewebber
  17. 17. @ewebber
  18. 18. PhotobyTedVanPelt People need a support network @ewebber
  19. 19. PhotobyEmoryMaiden Learning is done better when it’s done together @ewebber
  20. 20. @ewebber PhotobyRufino “From observing others one forms an idea of how new behaviours are performed, and on later occasions this coded information serves as a guide for action” Albert Bandura
 Social Learning Theory
  21. 21. PhotobyGutsGaming @ewebber
  22. 22. PhotobyStewartButterfield There are probably people in the same organisation doing 
 the same thing @ewebber
  23. 23. The Knowledge iceberg @ewebber
  24. 24. The Knowledge iceberg @ewebber
  25. 25. Who left their last job within 5 years? @ewebber
  26. 26. @ewebber On average, people move jobs every 4.4 years Forbes 2012
  27. 27. @ewebber When people leave they take parts of your organisational brain
  28. 28. PhotobyJonathan Not collaborating means missing out on better things @ewebber
  29. 29. @ewebber “Human communities can develop a sort of collective intelligence that is greater than the members’ individual intelligence.” Alex “Sandy” Pentland
 Social Physics @ewebber
  30. 30. @ewebber “I have been encouraged to try new things by hearing about the experiences of others” Community of practice member
  31. 31. A community of practice is group of people who share a concern or passion and • support each other • learn together • share knowledge • collaborate and create better practices @ewebber
  32. 32. @ewebber How can you put it 
 into practice?
  33. 33. @ewebber Membership Influence Fulfilment of needs Emotional connection McMillan,D.W.,&Chavis,D.M.(1986) Sense of community
  34. 34. Community maturity @ewebber ENERGYANDVISIBILITY POTENTIAL FORMING MATURING SELF-SUSTAINING input needed
  35. 35. The opportunity for a community to form @ewebber POTENTIAL
  36. 36. The community starts to come together @ewebber FORMING
  37. 37. The depth of connections and knowledge grows @ewebber MATURING
  38. 38. The members take ownership of the community @ewebber SELF-SUSTAINING
  39. 39. PhotobyChrisAmelung Have an idea about who the community is for and why it exists @ewebber
  40. 40. PhotobyRufino Meet often and regularly to build trust and connections @ewebber
  41. 41. PhotobyDennisFreeland Have the right leaders in place and make sure they have time to lead @ewebber
  42. 42. @ewebber
  43. 43. @ewebber Community leadership
  44. 44. Distributed community leadership @ewebber
  45. 45. PhotobyRFrancoisBester Start sharing stories of work and day to day challenges @ewebber
  46. 46. from silos to sharing knowledge to solving shared problems to using the collective knowledge of the community to create better practices @ewebber
  47. 47. @ewebber IllustrationbyTensoGraphics
  48. 48. @ewebber IllustrationbyTensoGraphics
  49. 49. @ewebber The magic IllustrationbyTensoGraphics
  50. 50. Photobyfr4dd Create a community charter together. Include why you exist and your principles @ewebber
  51. 51. PhotobyJonathan @ewebber
  52. 52. @ewebber https://digital.blogs.coop/2016/09/14/setting-up-communities-of-practice/
  53. 53. Photobyfr4dd Create a shared backlog of work to collaborate on @ewebber
  54. 54. PhotobyPaulClarke Vary what you do when you meet: look inwards, look outwards, learn new things, make things better @ewebber
  55. 55. Photobyfr4dd Retrospect regularly to make sure it keeps meeting members’ needs @ewebber
  56. 56. @ewebber Some things to remember
  57. 57. Photobyfr4dd It takes time and effort to get the best out of anything @ewebber
  58. 58. PhotobyLesChatfield You will need support from the organisation (But maybe not right away) @ewebber
  59. 59. PhotobyRufino The community will need to be empowered to make changes @ewebber
  60. 60. PhotobyChrisBlakeley Not everyone will want to join in and that’s ok @ewebber
  61. 61. @ewebber Building Successful Communities of Practice Discover How Connecting People Makes Better Organisations tacit.pub/tacitbooks
  62. 62. Thank you Emily Webber @ewebber emilywebber.co.uk / tacitlondon.com

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