The Future of Knowledge Management: Collaboration and Interaction – Law Schools Promoting KM

The following is an excerpt from Chapter 11 of my book, Knowledge Management for Lawyers, called “The Future of Knowledge Management in the Legal Profession.”

11.2 Collaboration and Interaction.

It is difficult to talk about the future without talking about technology. But the future of KM is not just dependent on advances in technology, although such advances will certainly play a significant role. There is an underlying factor that I believe is equally—and perhaps more—important. That is the nature of how people interact and work. With the popularity and proliferation of social media and social networking, we are seeing a change in the way people interact and behave. People are becoming more collaborative and willing to share. People are more forthcoming with information that, in a bygone era, was once considered better kept confidential. Helping others and sharing information is becoming the new default behavior. This new mindset, characterized by collaborating, cooperating, and sharing information and ideas, is the breeding ground on which knowledge management thrives and grows. This cultural shift, on a societal scale, is a factor that will predispose younger generations (some of whom are already law students and in the workforce) to embrace knowledge management.

There is also an indication of the mindset change in the way we are training our future lawyers. Several law schools have programs that stress the importance of innovation and try to prepare our future lawyers for a different kind of legal industry:

Read more

Three Tips For a More Focused and Productive Meeting

Everybody seems to hate meetings. We all complain about them. We’re too busy with real work to waste time sitting around, just talking.

Well, I recently had a very good, focused, and productive planning meeting with my key managers. There were many reasons it was good, but three things really helped ensure success.

First, I asked each participant a series of questions several days ahead of time and–this is important– Read more

Google Buzz – The Good and The Bad

google-buzz-logoGoogle Buzz is barely out of the digital delivery room, so it may be a bit premature to start a meaningful review of the web’s newest baby.  But I’ll do it anyway.  Well, “meaningful” may be a bit of a stretch.  How about “cursory” or “preliminary?”

In case you are an under-rock dweller, here are the basics: Google announced a new web application called Google Buzz, which integrates with Google’s Gmail service.  There is also a Google Buzz mobile device application, which is accessible by pointing your mobile browser to www.buzz.google.com.  Here are some shots of how it looks on the iPhone:

iphone-buzz-2 iphone-buzz-3 iphone-buzz-1

Buzz is being rolled out over time, so if you don’t have it yet, don’t panic.  Be patient.

It’s impossible to resist a comparison to Twitter.  But, Buzz is more than just a Twitter clone.  It’s sort of a Frankenstein’s Monster of  web applications: part Twitter, part instant messenger, part email, part discussion forum, part social media aggregator, part rich media delivery tool, and part location-based social network.  Too much to cover here.

If you really want to understand it, your best bet is to watch this brief video:

You can also read this good article about it from the New York Times.

A few notes on the good and bad of Google Buzz…

The Good:

  • Google Buzz is integrated into it’s popular (176 million users strong) Gmail email service.  This means more of a centralized hub for this new pastiche of communication.  It also means that it won’t be ignored (like Google Wave? and Google Latitude?) because the Buzz link appears right under Gmail’s inbox link.
  • Integration with Twitter.  If you connect your Twitter account (also Picasa, Flickr, and Google Reader) with Buzz, your tweets flow to your Buzz stream. Double your pleasure.
  • Integration with Google Reader.  Increasingly, Reader is becoming the filter from which I find interesting content on the web.  With Buzz, I can use the Reader “share” feature to send items right into my Buzz stream so others can enjoy the good content, as well.  You can follow me on Google Reader here.
  • Mobile access & LBSN features.  Google’s first swing at Buzz for mobile is impressive.  It shows a list view and a decent map view of nearby Tweets Buzzes (see pics above).  This will help Google overcome their failed attempt at LBSN (i.e., location-based social networking (see Google Latitude).  Lookout FourSquare?
  • The @ factor.  Like Twitter, you can direct a Buzz to a user by using the “at” symbol as a prefix to an email address.  So, to send someone  a Buzz, type @email_address@gmail.com in the Buzz box.

The Bad:

  • Direct messaging? As noted, there is an @ function, but it is not readily apparent whether there is a direct (private) message shortcut function (the equivalent of using the “d” in Twitter).  You can send a private message to “a small group of your closest friends,” (see the video) but doing so is just a tad cumbersome.  Shortcut, please.
  • Searching email also searches Buzz items.  Gmail’s ability to quickly search your email items is one of it’s best features.  As of this morning, search results included Buzz results.  Not good.  Google should be able to fix this (and there may already be a filter for it).  But the default search should exclude Buzz results, or Google should simply include a button to select the content to search.
  • Buzz to email.  Some users have already complained of being  inundated with email because Buzzes are going right into their inboxes (rather than into the separate Buzz location).  This is designed to happen when someone comments on your Buzz or sends you an “@ message” – so that you don’t miss it.  There should be an option to disable this feature.
  • Speaking of comments… everything in moderation, please.  This is not Twitter: people can comment on your Buzzes.  Sounds great, unless you follow someone like Robert Scoble or Pete Cashmore (of Mashable), then it’s WAY too much information.  A recent Buzz by Scoble elicited 100 “likes” and 145 comments.  Scrolling down through all those comments to the next Buzz took a while.  And I hate to say it, but a lot of those comments were meaningless blather.  Buzz needs a “show/hide” comments link (default view to hide) to avoid this.
  • Long posts: Again, this is not Twitter.  There is no 140 character limit on what you can Buzz about.  Scoble said he likes this, but I disagree.  Twitter has gotten us used to short messages.  140 characters may be too short, but I don’t want to read War and Peace in someone’s Buzz post.  Maybe there is a limit, but I couldn’t find it.
  • A butterfly?  (See the video) I get it, I get it: social butterfly.  But shouldn’t Google have used a bee or a hornet as the mascot?

As a preemptive strike, I’ll just say that the Google Buzz integration with Gmail had better not mess up my Gmail contacts!!!  There’s already enough frustration with that as it is.

That’s it – quick and dirty.  If you’re using Google Buzz, then let’s connect.  Find my Buzz information on my Google Profile.  I’ve also created a LinkedIn Group called Google Buzz where people can discuss it (in a less buzzy, old-school discussion- forum-type of way), so join that too.

So, what are your thoughts about Google Buzz?  Please comment below.

LawyerKM :: Knowledge Management & Technology for Lawyers and Law Firms

Does Anybody Know…? – a new website helps you get answers from your network.

aardvarkThere’s an impressive new website called Aardvark that helps you answer the question: “Does anybody know…?”  by tapping your online networks.  This is not a search engine.  The results are not a list of websites that may or may not get you the answers you need.  The results are from real people in real time.

So, how does it work?  Sign up at the Aardvark site [click here].  It requires that you have a Facebook [my page] account (other networks will be integrated in the future).  From the Aardvark site you can ask a question by simply typing your query into the box.  If you add your instant messaging (like Google Talk, AIM or Windows Live Messenger) and or email account information, you can ask questions via IM and email, too.  According to the site, “Aardvark first looks for a friend or friend-of-friend who can answer your question. If there are only a few people in your network, Aardvark will send your question to your very extended network (friends-of-friends-of-friends-of…) to make sure that you get an answer.”

So, how well does it work?  My first question was: “What’s the best Italian restaurant in midtown Manhattan?”  Within moments, I received an answer from Sara: “Becco is really great, on 46th between 8th and 9th(?). possibly 9th and 10th. it’s a little pricy but if you want to eat in midtown that’s the norm.”  Not bad.

Then I asked, “Where is the best place to see the 2009 Macy’s 4th of July fireworks display in NYC?”  I happen to know that, this year, the barges from which the fireworks are launched will be along the Hudson River (not the East River, as in years past) and according to Macy’s, the best place to view the show is on the west side: 12th Avenue below 59th Street, so this was a bit of a test.   The first answer came from Ling: “bring a chair to sit on the FDR, or watch it from someone’s rooftop.”  That would have been good advice last year, but the FDR is on the east side of Manhattan.  The second answer came from Josh: “Battery Park is a good place, also top of the Empire State Building.”  Again, Battery Park — at the southern tip of Manhattan, was good viewing for last year’s show, but this year?  Not so much.

So, is Aardvark a failure?  Time will tell as the site matures, but so far, I don’t think so.  The site and integration with Facebook, email, and IM is great.   So, mechanically, it works – I can ask questions and get answers very quickly and efficiently.  The quality of the answers is another matter.  It seems that Aardvark may be better at getting opinion answers (best Italian restaurant?) than facts (where can I see the fireworks?).  Besides, there are some questions that are best left to Google (I could have–and did–easily found the relevant information about the prime fireworks viewing with a quick web search).

The thing that sets Aardvark apart from Internet search engines is the human touch.  Sometimes, that is a good thing, and sometimes, well, it’s not.  Nevertheless, I’m looking forward to asking and answering questions on this interesting new website. And I’m looking forward to exploring how this sort of approach can advance KM efforts. So, in the spirit of the human touch, please let me know what you think of Aardvark (feel free to sign up with this link: http://vark.com/s/hUnq) and leave a comment below.

Photo: Tut99 on Flickr

LawyerKM :: Knowledge Management & Technology for Lawyers and Law Firms

Social Media For Lawyers Meetup Group Talks Twitter in NYC

If you’re in the legal profession, are interested in social media, and are in or near New York City this week, you should join the Social Media for Lawyers Meetup Group for a discussion about Twitter.

The Meetup, called The If’s, Why’s and How’s of Using Twitter, will be this Thursday, March 26, 2009 at 7:30 PM.  The location is still TBD, but will be somewhere in NYC.

As super-Tweeter and group organizer, Alin Wagner-Lahmy (@alinwagnerlahmy) puts it on the Meetup page:

Let’s gather to talk about how Twitter can be used to:

* Promote
* Network
* Learn
* and more

without it taking control over our lives.

As a meet-up, the purpose is to meet face to face. Those who cannot physically attend a NY venue and wish to attend are invited to attend via Twitter.

Location details to be confirmed soon (somewhere in NY City).

$5 fee for those attending f2f to cover location and drinks. If you plan attending through Twitter please still let us know by RSVPing.

Event Hasgtag: #SM4Law

So, please join in the conversation; and tell them you heard about it here.

You can follow LawyerKM on Twitter here.

LawyerKM :: Knowledge Management & Technology for Lawyers and Law Firms


Enterprise 2.0 Jumpstart (Web 2.0 Expo) | Knowledge Management

Web 2.0 Expo Wrap-up Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Thanks to Doug Cornelius at KM Space, I was able to attend the Web 2.0 Expo in NYC.  Instead of taking paper notes (speaking of paper-free, I wish I had one of these), I tapped them out on my laptop, and figured that I would share them with you.  They are rough (so please excuse any typos).

Today’s Workshop: Enterprise 2.0 Jumpstart

Speaker: Thomas Vander Wal of InfoCloud Solutions, Inc. (www.infocloudsolutions.com)From the Web 2.0 Expo:

This workshop provides an overview of the Web 2.0 tools and the changes
these social tools and user focused ease of use tools play for enterprise
(organizations that are large to small with business, non-profit, or public
service focus). There have great changes made to tools and services provided
on the web in the last 5 years or so as the layers and use of the tools on
top of the web browser have changed for the better. This change has value to
the organizations using the web and not just the people using sites.

The workshop focuses on conceptual models to help people things about the
important components for success using the social web tools and services to
augment the organization’s reach and engage better with customers and
employees.

The workshops covers advantages, lessons learned, and current along with
potential gaps around deciding how to make first steps, how to select tools,
and how to increase the chances for success with the Web 2.0 tools for
Enterprise use.

My Notes:

History – how did we get to Enterprise 2.0?

  • Old office systems were clunky, required too much IT involvement, etc.
  • The consumer web started to change – offer improved direction and features: blogging, etc.
  • the volume of information changed: email, IM etc. have greatly increased to amount of data floating around the enterprise.
  • People started to realize that Individuals — regardless of rank — offer solutions.  So, there was a need to give them the tools – the ability to contribute.
One factor contributing to Enterprise 2.0 Adoption: is that new employees are expecting web 2.0 tools (they grew up on the web and don’t understand why they can’t do it at work).  They understand the ideas — and ability to connect — related to social networking.
There is a bit of deja vu going on with the concerns about E2.0: similar to the 1990s with email (and before that with the telephone) – companies have a false concern that E2.0 tools will lead to information leaks outside the company.  [I remember someone once saying that if the telephone were introduced today, most companies would reject it because it would be too risky – people might use it to improperly disclose information to people outside the company]
So, what’s this web 2.0 / enterprise 2.0 stuff about?
  • people meeting and discussing: their wants, desires, needs, interests.
  • sharing.
  • but really: all about “me” – and those who I follow.  A very ego-centric world.  So, it’s social.
  • tools that help people advance as a society [whether that society is the world – on the web, or the enterprise]
When so many people have such far-reaching access, it can lead to a flood of information, many layers of
information, so we need tools to be able to get to the specific information that we need.
The digital nature of these w2.0 / E2.0 tools help ease the technology pain.  The ease of use of new tools increase the likelihood that people will use them to capture the information that is important to the company.

Information is great, but Actionable Information is more important.  It’s fine to capture all of this information, but you need to be able to do something with.

What does your organization know?  This is a key question in KM.  Most organizations don’t know everything they know.  A lot of information is trapped in people’s heads and it doesn’t do any good to the organization of those people leave.
Also important is what your company calls things.  If there are different terms, then it may be difficult to
communicate.  Knowing what your customers / clients call things is also important.

Vander Wal described his Four Rings of Social Enterprise:

  1. the tools: blogs, wikis, feeds, social bookmarking, voting, profiles, widgets, mashups, favoriting, comments.
  2. interface / ease of use: this is the platform, e.g., oracle, SharePoint [1&2 combine to make up the usability; eventually, the tools get out of the way, if the software is smart enough, it can take unstructured data and know what to do with it to make it actionable (e.g., stikkit.com)]
  3. Sociality: what are your relationships you have with others?  who do you want to share with?  everyone?  select people or groups?  [tools and sociality combine to make intelligence and business needs].  There are “spheres of sociality”  personal, selective, collective, the mob.
  4. Encouraging use: this is easy for younger employees.   [The combination of encouraging use and sociality leads to”social comfort”] – show success stories regularly; buiild and show use cases; manage the community – promote contributed content.  Show how good ideas in one part of the organization can be applied to another part of the organization.
The balance of all four rings: “social software perfection.”

Benefits and Cautions of Enterprise 2.0 (Inside, Outside and Through the Firewall)

Enterprise 2.0 – Inside the firewall
Benefits:

  • fills in gaps in communication
  • individual voices: more people can contribute their own perspectives (in a 1.0 environment, you might not even know that certain people have ideas about what the company is doing).  You never know who might be able to contribute valuable perspectives.
  • flexible structures:
  • tools are starting to get out of the way: again, ease of use…
  • ease of connecting:
  • tools embrace horizontal interaction: this is the idea of how ideas can be applied in various parts of the organization.
  • easy to iterate & create more efficient workflows: this helps the organization work much more quickly
  • low, if any, abuse of the tools: since the tools used the organizations LDAP/AD feeds to identify users, the users are reluctant to abuse the system – there is accountability (even the intelligence community uses wikis and blogs they’ve never had a case of abuse of the tools)
Cautions:
  • know offerings of tools (i.e. the tools mentioned in the first ring, above): what does each tool offer
  • adoption may be slow – you must work to improve engagement/use (incentives are often counter productive – it can lead to people putting junk into the system) – get people focused on the “me” aspect – figure out how the tools can be beneficial to them so that they will want to contribute
  • formal training is not needed: use overview sessions (in intelligence agencies, trainers go around and spend small amounts of time with users)
  • the web is different from in-house: e.g., there is no anonimity in-house
  • understand employee fears: and address them
Enterprise 2.0 – Outside the firewall
Benefits:

  • a more human approach: e.g., rather than press releases, blogs allow companies to interact with their customers and clients.
  • embrace conversations with customers: web 2.o allows you to connect with customers [cited book: Cluetrain Manifesto: marketing is a conversation – it’s happening whether the company is involved in it or not.]
  • supports interaction through ease of use
  • eases customer support: lets customers show their love and support: e.g., endorsing products and services in blog posts, twitter posts, etc.
  • allow direct connection to the customer: web 2.0 is yet another channel to connect with customers
  • let’s customers help innovate
Cautions:

  • listen first: listening to customer / client feedback
  • marketing will need to adapt: this is a new way of doing things.
  • moderate the comments and discussion (with a light hand) [but you don’t want to make the comments seem artificially positive – you may be criticized if you delete all negative, but relevant, comments]
  • avoid lock-in: allow people to get the information out of your site and on to other sites.
  • must be easy to join and engage: if it is too difficult to contribute, people won’t bother.
  • consider scaling & long-term use: make sure you can handle it if your company blog grows and generates more and more comments, etc.
Enterprise 2.0 – Through the firewall (communication from within the company to those outside the company)
Benefits:

  • authenticated interactions: know who is allowed to interact.
  • common space for franchisees
  • preferred customer usage (e.g. invitation only beta testing and previsews)
  • transparent communications
  • directly engaging with customers / clients
Cautions:

  • transparent communications: must be aware of legal ramifications, leaks, etc.
  • set nimble processes for setting official organization responses.
  • set firm policies for handling caustic situations
  • scaling: problems if your site or services are down
  • information reuse by customers
  • how to engage
Enterprise 2.0: Value of Multiple Perspectives

  • Personal
  • Collective: when aggregating information about “social objects,” you can follow the links to the various individuals and get multiple perspectives.
  • Collaborative – a group perspective around a “social object” (you may not be able to see the individual contributions (things are seen as a whole).
  • New User: this is someone who doesn’t know yet how to use the system.
  • Service Owner: this person is concerned about more technical and structural aspects of the E 2.0 systems.
  • External Developers: example is Twitter: most of the people who use Twitter use it via third-party interface [Ijust started using Twittelator on the iPhone]
Examples of Users (using Digg.com or Mixx.com as an example):

  • Non-user (newbies)
  • Non-Contributing Collective User (this person simply consumes content )
  • Non-Contributing Selective User (maybe uses a selective view of a site)
  • Light Contributing User (this person might tag, favorite, or comment on content)
  • Heavy Contributing User (this person also adds new content)
The above was combined into a matrix of perception with depth of perception and faces of perception.
Elements of Social Software

  • Identity
  • Objects
  • Presence
  • Actions
  • Sharing

Once an OBJECT is shared, a person (through IDENTITY) builds RELATIONSHIPS, and then RELATIONSHIPS form CONVERSATIONS about OBJECTS, this turns into GROUPS that COLLABORATE.  Of course, there was a venn-type diagram to explain this.

Focus on the individual voice: Information, understanding, and knowledge in context from their perspective.

Case Studies:

1. Comcast Cares

Started on Twitter: one Comcast employee would look for people on twitter who would voice complaints, he would reach out to them.
  • now comcast searches blogs and other forums and reaches out to people there, as well.
  • it is a whole new way to connect with customers
  • now the team is 7 – 10 employees
  • have various searches and alerts to monitor the web and community forums for mentions of Comcast.
  • provides customer feedback and assistance
  • as of August ’08 – interacted with 11,500 Twitter users
2. Starbucks Ideastorm
  • built on SalesForce.com system
  • a “My Starbucks” platform
  • open to all to make recommendations for new ideas for Starbucks
  • customers suggest ideas and other customers can vote
  • in one month there were over 600 comments and 53, 000 votes
  • gets customers involved and drives innovation
  • what about long-term engagement?
3. McDonalds Franchisee Community
  • built on Awareness hosted platform
  • About 2 -3 months to build & deploy
  • internal McDonalds corporate & franchisees
  • inside the firewall and through to trused external customers
  • news, blogs, community, profiles, & photos
  • focus on community neighborhoods, with 200 planned.
LawyerKM :: Knowledge Management & Technology for Lawyers and Law Firms

Deliver Facebook for the Enterprise | Knowledge Management

I attended a webinar from NewsGator called Deliver ‘Facebook for the Enterprise’ with SharePoint

NewsGator, Deliver Facebook for the Enterprise | Knowledge Management

Here are my rough notes, so please forgive typos:

September 11, 2008

Speakers:

  • Deb Bannon Senior Product Manager at Microsoft
  • Laura Farrelly – Marketing at NewsGator

What is social computing (SC)?

  • examples – Facebook, LinkedIn, Wikipedia
  • a collaboration mechanism using the Internet

Many employees are demanding the same type of web functionality in their companies

Social Computing is in the “collaboration spectrum”

  • SC – really about the connection with people rather than about content.

Enterprise 2.0

  • the enterprise use of web 2.0 technologies
  • power is moving from institutions to communities
  • moving from a top down to a bottom up model

Business Drivers for SC:

  • drive collaboration & social interaction
  • capture and share tacit knowledge
  • discover content in new ways
  • capture “wisdom of the masses” via social feedback
  • build sense of connection to the company
  • easy search and find relevant subject matter and subject matter experts
  • encourages participation
  • increases efficiency, productivity and speed

Growth in the Market

  • expected to by over $5B in 2013

Employees want the technology, but IT departments want to make sure the platforms are secure, manageable, and compliant

SharePoint (SP) can be used to bring web 2.0 into the enterprise

  • includes blog and wikis
  • enterprise search
  • consistent user interface and one-stop place for all such collaboration tools
  • easy to customize
  • NewsGator can integrate with SP

NewsGator Demo

  • “Facebook for the enterprise” – short review of what Facebook looks like.
  • Facebook Groups reviewed also
  • There is a risk of using consumer-based social networking products in the enterprise (for obvious reasons)
  • NewsGator’s answer is a dedicated platform for the enterprise (NewsGator’s platform, of course)

Live NewsGator Demo (very much like Facebook):

  • based on fake pharmaceutical company
  • recent activities section
  • anytime a name is displayed, it is hypertexted to the the person’s profile
  • there is a social network graph (this is nice) the closer (physically) the contact, the stronger the connection (not sure how the relationships — or thier strength — are established) Update – Laura Farrelly has clarified this blow in the comments – Thanks Laura!
  • can add tags to communities
  • communities are auto populated with info from SP and news feeds, emails, etc.
  • discussion threads are accessible via email – so that people can contribute via email.
  • RSS feeds (which is NewsGator’s forte)

Example from Universal McCann, which is using SP with NewsGator

  • global media communications agency
  • BTW – Universal McCann’s website is pretty slick (although maybe too slick – it’s a bit hard to navigate)
  • built communities based on area of interest rather than geographic location or projects
  • they use the platform also to connect with their customers
  • Universal McCann has a white paper on their site called The Social Butterfly Effect
  • Link to Universal McCann video case study.

LawyerKM :: Knowledge Management & Technology for Lawyers and Law Firms

Failure to Communicate | Knowledge Management

I’ve written before about the various generations of workers in law firms (see Generation X, Y, & ME in Your Law Firm and Attorney 2.0 – Generation Y in Your Law Firm).

The basic concern is this: the workers with the most knowledge and experience (Baby Boomers and “Matures” (those born 1900 to 1945)), will be leaving the workforce and they are not interacting with and passing along their wisdom to younger generations.  This is according to a Financial Week article called, Failure to communicate: Survey reveals big generation gap in the workplace.

What to do? A combination of technology and good, old-fashioned interaction could be the key to combat this institutional brain drain.

According to the article, the “Atlanta-based Randstad USA’s annual 2008 World of Work survey found that the four generations now in the U.S. workforce—Generation X, Generation Y, baby boomers and “matures” (those born 1900 to 1945)—rarely interact with one another.  That lack of communication, the study found, is keeping key institutional job knowledge held by the boomer generation from filtering down to younger workers.

“The current pressure for productivity—the pressure for people to do more with less creates that barrier,” [Eric Buntin, managing director of marketing and operations for Randstad.] says. “Employers need to be aware that people just don’t have time to interact.

The article hits on the importance of “creat[ing] functional work teams to bring employees together” and the need for “collaboration on jobs that makes older and younger workers feel as if they’re both contributing to business goals on new products or handling service issues.”

The dodo has been extinct since the mid-to-late 17th century

What about the next generation? The article fails, however, to address another aspect of knowledge management: codifying a company’s “intellectual capital” to make some of that tacit knowledge into explicit knowledge.  This is important because organizations need to think beyond one generation.  The knowledge transfer that occurs with project collaboration may help a Gen Y worker learn from a Baby Boomer, but what happens when both workers leave the organization?  We must remember that younger generations tend not to stay in one organization as long as Boomers.  Company loyalty seems to have gone the way of the dodo.  In fact, the U.S. Department of Labor says that one-third of the American workforce changes jobs every year.

If there is no systematic way to capture a worker’s tacit knowledge and distribute it in an asynchronous way (so that a skipped generation can access it), then the knowledge transfer that occurs during project collaboration will just serve to delay the inevitable organizational brain drain.

So, yes, failure to communicate is bad; but failure to capture that communication may be worse.  And now, for your viewing pleasure…

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1fuDDqU6n4o&hl=en&fs=1]

LawyerKM :: Knowledge Management & Technology for Lawyers and Law Firms

LinkedIn Groups to add Discussion Forums | Knowledge Management

I am excited that this Friday, LinkedIn will be adding discussion forums and related features to LinkedIn Groups.  Here is an extract from the email announcement I received: 

This Friday [8/29/08], we will be adding several much-requested features to your group:

  • Discussion forums: Simple discussion spaces for you and your members.
  • Enhanced roster: Searchable list of group members.
  • Digest emails: Daily or weekly digests of new discussion topics which your members may choose to receive. (We will be turning digests on for all current group members soon, and prompting them to set to their own preference.)
  • Group home page: A private space for your members on LinkedIn.

We’re confident that these new features will spur communication, promote collaboration, and make your group more valuable to you and your members.

Knowledge Management for Legal Professionals (KMLP) is a LinkedIn group of over 600 members.  I had been looking for relatively easy ways to foster collaboration among members of this group for quite some time.  The Knowledge Management for Legal Professionals Netvibes page is a good place to see some good legal KM blogs and, but the collaboration there has been sparse.   The Knowledge Management for Legal Professionals Facebook Group has had more success in getting discussions going.   I am hopeful that these new LinkedIn features will be a step in the right direction.  

On a related note, I encourage everyone to check out a new social news network site that, I think, shows some promise.  It is called Social Median.  I set up a network there called (you guessed it) Knowledge Management for Legal Professionals.   I like it because it aggregates relevant news and information and offers RSS delivery of the content. 

LawyerKM :: Knowledge Management & Technology for Lawyers and Law Firms