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KMWorld 2015: Agile Knowledge Sharing & Innovation

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Being agile is critical. Agile can mean applying an incremental and iterative approach, or evolving through collaboration between self-organizing and cross-functional teams to promote early delivery, continuous improvement, and encourage rapid and flexible response to change.

Successful organizations are flexible and fast. They can quickly transfer and share knowledge, deal with an enormous amount of data, innovate, engage, and impact communities, and customers in positive ways. The platforms, processes and programs have to respond in a timely fashion to make this happen and to keep customers satisfied. The culture of the organization, the people, enables the transformations and innovations – and well-oiled collaborative organizations excel at leading the charge! KMWorld 2015 explores how to apply these techniques and more for knowledge sharing and innovation in your enterprise to be successful in today’s world. And it has three closely integrated programs—Enterprise Search & Discovery, SharePoint Symposium, and Taxonomy Boot Camp.

Highlights

Keynote speakers are always engaging and thought provoking and this year is no different. On Monday November 2 Taxonomy Boot Camp opens with information architect Peter Morville, President of Semantic Studios who has several books to his credit (http://semanticstudios.com). On Tuesday, KMWorld 2015 opens with popular , knowledge management (KM) thought leader, Dave Snowden, Chief Scientific Officer of Cognitive Edge who discusses “complexity informed agility” in KM with Will Evans, Design Thinker-in-Residence, NYU’s Stern’s Berkley Center for Innovation & Entrrepreneurship and Chief Design Officer, Praxis Flow and his colleague, Jabe Bloom, Chief Scientific Officer, Praxis Flow. On Wednesday, Steve Abrams,

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Fall Events for Libraries

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I can’t believe it is now September which begins the busy fall events for libraries. Here’s some exciting events, one on the east coast and lots of the west coast, that I want to share with you and hope to see you participate!

Monday & Tuesday Sept 28/9 at Vancouver Club Outcomes, Value & Impact: Metrics for Libraries

Thursday & Friday Oct 1/2 at University of Southern California in LA Outcomes, Value & Impact for Library Success

Monday & Tuesday Oct 19/20 at University of Toronto iSchool The Future of Libraries: Ours to Create, NOW!

Mon-Wed, Oct 26-8 at Monterey CA Conference Center Internet Librarian 2015 & Library Leaders Digital Strategy Summit

 

Customers First!

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Such stimulating conversations today around customer service at the University of Toronto iSchool Symposium, Customer Service for Libraries: Upping our Game! Moe Hosseini-Ara, Director of Culture for the City of Markham, started off setting the framework for the event. He talked a lot about our competition in libraries from other video, book, and community services, and also how positive customer service makes a big impact.

Vilayat Ahmed, Store Manager at Starbucks Coffee Canada’s flagship store in the financial district in Toronto talked about the company’s mission: to inspire and nurture the human spirit one person, one cup and one neighbourhood at a time. He said they are in the people business and serve coffee, they provide a service and experience. He talked about the 44 year history of the organization and how they create an environment to encourage conversation. Yes, enjoy the coffee but have a sense of community and conversation too! Vilayat talked about customer service as an attitude where workers need to anticipate (drop what they are doing & put the customer first), make it easy for the customer (they are guests!), connect with customers (eye contact, pleasant conversation), personalize the service (name on the cup in Starbucks) and own your experience, take ownership i f you make a mistake and acknowledge with immediate action (oh, I made that wrong, let me get you another one & take this one too). Basically, Starbucks wants to keep loyal customers, keep them coming back. They want to be a third

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Providing Excellent Customer Service

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Providing excellent customer service and delighting the customer is the top of mind for me lately. At Computers in Libraries 2015 keynote speakers emphasized delighting the customer. You can read more about their presentations & see the videos:

Steve Denning, Author, The Leader’s Guide to Radical Management

Blog Post: http://www.libconf.com/2015/04/27/continuous-innovation-and-transformation-the-opening-keynote/

Video (you can skip the promo at the beginning!): http://www.libconf.com/2015/04/27/continuous-innovation-and-transformation-the-opening-keynote/

John Palfrey, Head of School, Phillips Academy, Board President of the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) & Author, BiblioTECH: Why Libraries Matter More Than Ever in the Age of Google

Blog Post: http://www.libconf.com/2015/04/28/creating-a-new-nostalgia-the-tuesday-keynote/

Video: http://computersinlibraries.infotoday.com/2015/Video.aspx

But why is customer service or delighting the customer so important? Customer service fosters a good relationship between customers and the organization and leads to keeping or engaging those customers. Without customers there is no business or support in the case of non-profits like libraries. Reducing a customer’s stress, giving them a pleasant customer experience, and providing information that can solve their problem is all important to keep positive customer satisfaction (the overall contentment with a customer interaction). Excellent customer service involves providing outstanding service that meets (or exceeds) the customer’s expectations — it delights the customer. Excellent customer service also includes having a great attitude and being people centered or customers focused. So in addition to knowing your customer really well, and understanding their true expectations (making no assumptions), what do you need for good customer service?

Develop the skills to be successful Assess the current level of customer service (customer satisfaction surveys,

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Seizing Opportunities

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Wow! This article from Strategy + Business, How to Seize the Opportunities When Megatrends Collide, has articulated what I like to do! “… tap into people’s natural curiosity about external factors, to broaden and deepen the resulting conversation; and to translate the general understanding of megatrends into a more practical framework that companies could use to seek opportunities and reduce risks.” For years Rebecca and I have talked and taught about the big picture and thinking strategically. Here’s an earlier post on the topic too!

More from the S+B article:

“The megatrends framework can help any private- or public-sector leader think more clearly about complex external trends, and help develop an ordered, prudent, and proactive strategy for facing them. Its basic building blocks are five historical patterns active in the world today that have left their mark on all aspects of the world’s economic and social fabric.

1. Demographic and social change: the combination of greater life expectancy, declining birthrates in many parts of the world, and unprecedented rates of human migration, accompanied by a gradual increase in the status of women and greater ethnic and social diversity within most countries.

2. Shifts in global economic power: in particular, the much-noted expansion of prosperity in emerging economies at faster rates than in the industrialized world, leading to momentous changes in consumption patterns and a rebalancing of international relations.

3. Rapid urbanization: the massive expansion of cities around the world, through a combination of migration and childbirth, with major implications for

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Dr. James Calvin, Johns Hopkins U

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Dr. James Calvin of Carey Business School @ Johns Hopkins University spoke @ the SLA Leadership Summit on Friday afternoon. on Exercising Leadership Influence for an Empowering Culture in Organizations: Outreach Empowerment. Having just returned 2 days ago from Lima, Peru he remarked on Lima’s incredible size and how farmers come to the huge metropolis for livelihood. Two plans have been developed to engage these people in moving forward; an organization has been recognized as an NGO; 8 organizations have spawned another 8 organizations, with a trimestrial meeting to begin building soft skills such as leadership. Leadership takes time, passion and work.

A Peruvian cancer society serves the poorest children with cancer; their goal is to expand their capacity — they started by serving 70 kids/year, and are building a facility to serve 200 kids/year. They keep their eye on the ball and on their goal. Leadership is about real people, about where they are, and where they want to go.

His points:

Leaders are responsible for setting and maintaining progress towards objectives – and building and managing teams that are collaborative and globally diverse to attain results and unleash talent & ideas.

Edgar Schein – identifies 3 levels of culture : artifacts (visible), espoused beliefs and values(may appear through surveys) and basic underlying assumptions (unconscious taken for granted beliefs and values : these are not visible). The latest being the more important since as Schein puts it “Human minds needs cognitive stability and any challenge of a basic assumption

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Advice for Advancing Agendas!

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Great article containing very practical advice for libraries (and others) who want to push their agendas! It’s from a retired politician who actually wrote a book about his experience! From former Nova Scotia finance minister Graham Steele, author of, What I Learned about Politics, Here’s a review of the book. But here is his specific advice. Let me know if you try it and if it works for you. Be tough. Don’t be too nice. Just do it!

“None of you should talk to a politician about anything that matters without knowing what the escape hatches are,” said Steele. “The escape hatches are the rhetorical devices that politicians learn to avoid dealing with the real issue.”

Steele used an example of an escape hatch he used as finance minister when he was on a tour called Back to Balance.

During the tour, Steele spoke with Denise Corey, who is now the chief librarian for Cumberland Public Libraries. Corey was also at Steele’s visit at the Wandlyn Inn.

“Denise was at the session and she said she spoke to me about libraries at the meeting and I have no recollection of it,” said Steele.

Steele asked Corey what he said to her at the Back to Balance meeting.

“What I said is what every politician says, ‘I love libraries.’”

He also said he would look into her concerns.

“To Denise that sounds reasonable,

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No Strategy is Perfect!

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Rebecca and I deal a lot with strategy in our business and this article, Where are the Sinkholes in Your Strategy, from one of my favorites, Strategy + Business, really resonated with me. Here are some quotes, but do check out the entire article.

“My firm was once asked by a CEO to assess the strategy of his company, one of the world’s largest. He wanted to know if there were any holes that he and his board should address. I’ve always thought this showed great leadership and confidence. (Strategy is a lot like IQ for many people: to challenge their strategy is to question their intelligence.) It also revealed his keen awareness that no strategy is perfect.

We started by asking two questions:

1. What distinctive capabilities make the company better than any other at how it adds value to its individual businesses, and how those businesses meet their promises to customers?

2. Are changes happening in the company’s world that could render its distinctive capabilities obsolete or insufficient?”

Rebecca and I have written a lot about value and you can see most of our posts here. But the one thing we encourage our clients to think about is their impact on their clients’ clients — not those you see day to day, but the the clients of those people. It’s a great exercise as is scenario planning like question 2 above suggests. It means you have to be aware of your environment and spend some time looking at

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Transformation: Re-Envision & Change

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Just got an email from OpenText on enterprise information management (EIM) trends, and what we’ve all got in common. I particularly like what they have to say about digital transformation: re-envision the way you do things, get more value out of investments, use existing strategic assets in new ways, focus on how to drive change and drive that change from the top — takes leadership! Here it is in their words:

From OpenText

Build Your Knowledge, Build Your Strategy “Digital transformation is basically the use of technology to dramatically improve enterprise performance, and it’s a pretty hot topic right now in just about every corner of the world. Leaders in every industry are using digital advances (such as analytics, social media, mobility, and smart embedded devices) and improving the way they use traditional technologies (such as ERP) to change internal processes, customer experiences, and value propositions. Most industry executives remember how quickly digital technology upset the media and entertainment industry early in the first decade of the millennium, and they know they need to be ready for whatever is coming their way.

Many are now successfully transforming their organizations with digital technology. Here are some of their tips:

It’s not about having all the latest technology; it’s about what you can do with it. Re-envision the way you do things. The biggest digital transformation initiatives focus on a fresh look at customer relationships, operational processes, and business models. You might be able to get much more value out of

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Leading Change Management

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Another wonderful piece from Strategy + Business. ” The success rate of major change initiatives is only 54 percent.” The piece includes a great short video about why this rate is so slow. Check it out. Here are the top 10 principals for leading change management:

 

1. Lead with the culture.

2. Start at the top.

3. Involve every layer.

4. Make the rational and emotional case together.

5. Act your way into new thinking.

6. Engage, engage, engage.

7. Lead outside the lines. Includes: pride builders, trusted nodes, change or culture ambassadors

8. Leverage formal solutions.

9. Leverage informal solutions.

10. Assess and adapt.

“These 10 guiding principles offer a powerful template for leaders committed to effecting sustained transformational change. The work required can be arduous and exacting. But the need for major change initiatives is only going to become more urgent. It behooves us all to get it right. ” You’ll get lots more out of the full article!