Our Wiki-based Offerings
The capabilities of wiki software are tremendously varied; we’ll find the type of wiki that best suits your needs.
Blended Perspectives offers:
- Industry Strategy: An evaluation of strategic impacts of Wikis for your enterprise in the context of your industry.
- Business Value Articulation: Which processes a wiki would best showcase the value in your firm. don’t worry, we’ll also tell you when a wiki is not the best solution.
- Technical selection: Vendor-savvy, we’ll help you and your internal stakeholders reason with the plethora of commercial and open source solutions in today’s market place.
- Technical Implementation: We’ll help you determine your infrastructure choices around hosting, inside or outside the firewall and help you integrate it. Installation, Systems administration, Plugins, LDAP, datawarehouse and embed into existing portal systems too.
- Cultural adoption: We’ll help you quietly launch the service to ensure you gain credibility and mutual support processes with your internal staff; this service includes leadership messaging and participation, rewards and metrics and training and coaching.
- Staffing Choices: As we move into a world where mass collaboration is increasing important, hiring the right people with the right values and skills is vital. We can help you gain these new competencies.
Wikis are a powerful class of Enterprise 2.0 application that fundamentally changes the nature of sharing information. Unlike many E2.0 applications that are still early stage, the paradigm and feature set of wikis have stablized to a point where their utility is widely accepted. As an application, a Wiki serves as a good first step toward the collaborative workplace. Martin Cleaver at Blended Perspectives has been providing Wiki Consulting services since 2001 and keenly watches developments in the collaborative technologies and practices industries.
Do you need a wiki?
In most organizations, the internal staff’s needs are largely unmet. Where an organization has an internal “intranet” website it is often under-maintained by a few technical capable but overworked team utilizing some kind of centrally controlled content management system. Typically, Content Managed pages are:
- out of date; and
- contain only a subset of information, handling mainstream business processes.
If your organization relies on sharing knowledge, and evolving processes to continually assimilate new information, in principle your intranet should be a perfect place to keep everyone aligned. In practice most intranets fail in many ways.
The potential output of your staff far exceeds the capacity of any intranet “content authoring team.” Why do firms incur administrative cost every time information needs to be shared? Why impose workflows when everyone works differently? Overhead and imposition kill the vitality of internal knowledge circulation, and stifle the execution capability and agility of your firm.
Internal Knowledge is Vital
Your staff are your powerhouse. Without them your organization would cease to exist. But how do you leverage them to blend the insights from across your organization? What happens if you don’t?
Giving Voice to New Staff
New hires have fresh perspective: if you’ve hired correctly the worldview of young workers is lit clearly with the potential of collaboration and untainted by industry norms; if you’ve hired correctly the value of the worldview of newly acquired experienced workers is that they see your industry or work processes with different assumptions. Either way, the organization’s goal must be to maximize the effectiveness of workers and harness what they know. A wiki can help new staff voice, share, experience and validate their insights with peers, and contextualize plans in the ways that best make sense for your organization.
Countering the Draining Effects of your Retiring and Ever-more Transient Workforce
Today’s society and workforce is going through two tremendous shifts: the retiring workforce is depleting the organization of its most experienced and best connected workers and executives and the shorter tenure is making it ever harder for organizations to rely on one-off training. The Wiki Workplace helps newcomers to circulate what they know so they can get answers to their questions and find others interested in the same topics. Although incidental to knowledge workers task-at-hand, this repository of knowledge is accessible to future employees, helping your firm be more effective.
Sharing questions within a firm creates a paradigm of transparency, and helps continuously share accumulated understanding. For content that can be shared by all staff, Wikis enable everyone their input and, with the right leadership and culture, a community can teach itself. Few organizations truly engage and empower staff, but wikis provide both the space to explore every conversation and a means to consolidate the conversation back to content. Wiki based conversation and consolidation provides the means to engage, track sources of ideas, and empower others to act on them.
Knowledge Synthesis: fundamental to today’s world
Today’s society excels at acquiring and processing deep knowledge: we have specialists in a bewildering number of disciplines. What’s been hard is blending perspectives of workers into outputs that provide value for customers, partners and suppliers. A new core capability, one of blending organizational competences is required, as we live in a world where executing a different strategy keeps the firm distinct in the eyes of customers. As Wikipedia shows so publicly, wikis are a powerful tool to make knowledge blending happen, and for this task to be shared by the people closest to the knowledge at hand.
How can firms change what they do to meet new customer needs or take advantage of new internal competences? How can the enterprise to do the nonroutine, discover new opportunities, and create new concepts?
To repeatedly innovate requires insiders to understand internal competences and to align whole constellations of services to provide value. At Blended Perspectives we help firms create the collaborative workspace needed to share and synthesize internal conversation and to escalate the results into signals shared on dashboards for easy assimilation by other parts of the firm.
Collaborative Partnership Processes
Wikis reduce the cost of sharing complex information. Both within and between firms, reduced information sharing costs redefine the boundaries competencies firms need to keep in-house, and for what they can rely on partners.
Wikis: A Structural Solution to a Structural Problem
Increasing the number of people staffed on the intranet project is seldom the answer. Even banks, such as Citibank, which have staffing levels at sufficient levels to cause professional envy, are increasingly turning to wikis as a quick and effective means to generate and share knowledge internally and with their customers.
Wikis empower individuals at the front line to grow what they know and blend it with the knowledge of others. For individuals, they grow their knowledge together and find others who share their interests, irrespective of the organization. For companies, wikis provide continuity in a world of staff churn, and a means to continually blend operational and strategic perspectives across the firm.