The 10 laws of collective success are connected to companies and communities and though some may generally apply to any kind of collective, they are directly referred to using enterprise social tools.
1. Thou shall be willing to ask. This is what mostly triggers interaction. Creating an open environment where it’s ok to call for someone else’s knowledge is the right way to deliver and receive value within a community. And it’s the most natural thing to do when you need assistance with a specific issue. Consider all the benefits of a Q&A system.
2. Thou shall be willing to listen to everyone. Don’t expect to get help only on hierarchy principles. When asking for information address to everyone in your organization, or else you might lose sight on some under the radar people that could offer reliable support. Read our post on on how innovation can come from the most unusual places.
3. Thou shall keep knowledge focused. Stay on topic and avoid aimless subjects. Follow the structure suggested by the architecture of the tool you’re using. Respecting some general directions will keep knowledge flow fluent.
4. Thou shall perform fair competition. There’s nothing wrong with enabling a competitive spirit. It’s in our human nature. The biggest the community, the higher the stake of catching everyone’s attention. It usually brings out the best in people and it helps expand our horizons. You just need to perform it on fair-play principles. (Read our post on workplace competition.)
5. Thou shall prevent over-perseverance. The temptation of trying to do everything by yourself is quite common. But the truth is you don’t usually have all the necessary resources to do that. It’s admirable when you try to accomplish a number of vast tasks by yourself, but it sometimes leads to project delays. We wrote more on the subject in this post on the danger of over-perseverance within distributed teams.
6. Thou shall try to facilitate present processes. Don’t implement a solution that will feel like a burden for users. Consider all the UX facets: keep it easy to use, inviting and light. It needs to stimulate and to be time and effort saving.
7. Thou shall ask thyself “what does this button do”. Test and use all the facilities your collaboration tools has to offer. Examine the mechanisms that can work in your favor and apply it whenever appropriate.
8. Thou shall try to share implicit knowledge. If you’re not familiar to the term, read this article on what the implicit knowledge is first. Don’t preserve your know-how, keeping information all to yourself does not help expanding it. We all experienced situations that aren’t captured in written documentations. Sharing our understanding on specific issues is the first step in turning it into explicit knowledge.
9. Thou shall bring out the engagement spirit. Be accessible and available. Don’t only engage when asked to, find time to explore and adopt an active approach on all the social activities within your company or community. Make other feel welcomed in joining subject where they can show their proficiency.
10. Thou shall contribute with updates. A useful information is above all an updated information. Use the framework your social tools applies to check the categories you’re most trained at in order to offer your support for the accuracy of the information (e.g. check the tags that are related to your professional knowledge).
Happy Knowledge Sharing!