Conversations, stories, video clips, multi-user blogging platforms and social conferencing are all part of the mix of old and new tools important for engagement and knowledge sharing, so here's some links that give a glimpse of developments around the world.... just in the last few days.
- Canadian Dave Pollard offers Ten Steps to Great Conversation, ranging from Prepare, and Set the Stage, through Summarise, to Develop, Teach and Communicate Simple Conversation Protocols. He draws on previous items by himself and others, and so provides a pretty full guide. Dave's site is so thoughtful and wide-ranging it fully justifies its title of How to Save the World.
- From Australia the team at Anecdote offer us another ten - this time reflections about storytelling - for sales, to communicate who we are, to make connections, and more. The site, run by a consulting company, is a terrific resource demonstrating how an open, sharing philosophy is often well demonstrated these days in the for-profit social software and collaboration field.
- I' ve also signed up to hear more about the application Anecdote are developing, called Zahmoo, which support Most Significant Change - a monitoring technique based on the collection and selection of stories. The technique involves collecting stories, gathering people together to talk about them and then selecting the stories they believe are the most significant. More on that here.
- From the US Beth Kanter offers a round-up of the research she has done into nonprofits using video on blogs and sites like YouTube, OurMedia and Blip.TV. There are great examples, links to resources as well as reflections on the challenges in committing time to vlogging. Beth's conclusion - it's still early days.
- Closer to my home TechCrunch reports on the forthcoming launch of QueensSpeech.com, a new London-based Social Networking and Social Publishing service for the lesbian and gay community. In addition to the usual blog-based online networking tools "QueensSpeech will aggregate this content to build topic-based, glossy, magazine style frontpages that summarise what’s being discussed throughout the gay community, by the community which they are calling ‘conversational publishing’."
- Nancy White sent me a link showing how she and Beth helped participants at the World Café Global Steward's Dialogue start blogging at their event in California. Face-to-face and online facilitation start to come together. This led me to the World Cafe site with great resources on how to run these events. Nancy's blog is an amazing resource for online tools, insights, humanity - and chocolate - showing this stuff can be fun too.
- The new/old mix of methods can become a bit overwhelming, but thankfully in South Africa a team is pulling together a Collaborative learning environments sourcebook, based on work started back in 2002. It covers both concepts and models (communities of practice, lifelong learning) as well as tools and technologies (blogs, wikis, rss).
Next week Policy Unplugged will be demonstrating a mix of collaboration techniques at the Bricking it? event by running a multi-blog networking system either side of a social conferencing event. We'll be talking about the ways that globalisation will impact upon the next generation, and I trust people will be prepared to share their thoughts more widely on video too. You can join in by registering - see the How to use section.
Helping develop the site has brought home to me how much easier it is to write about the benefits of collaborative technology, than make it work. As Jack Vinson shows with his round-up of Barriers to knowledge sharing , it is tough even when inside the same organisation.
On the other hand, as the blog snippets above demonstrate, it is possible to learn from others across the world in a way that would have been impossible a few years back, if you want to.