You can’t learn if you aren’t listening
Imagine you go to an ice cream shop to purchase vanilla ice cream with rainbow sprinkles and you get to the counter and ask, “Can I please have some vanilla soft serve with rainbow sprinkles?” How would you feel if the person serving you didn’t respond? How long would you wait at the counter? Would you ask the person again? Maybe you are a nice person and you would ask again. What if after you asked for the third time the person finally responded with, “You don’t want vanilla ice cream. you want a burger.” Oh, that makes no sense.. after all you knew that you wanted ice cream and you even knew what kind and you were aware that the ice cream shop had this flavor and you had an expectation that the person serving would be happy to serve you up some soft serve vanilla.
Well folks, this happens every day both to people consuming content and products and for those trying to provide content and products. You can’t learn what someone wants or what someone knows if you aren’t listening.
There is a good chance that someone isn’t listening to what you are saying even if you are.. in fact, the owner of the ice cream shop itself.
My first tool .. Effective Listening
10 Steps To Effective Listening – Forbes <– have at the link..
Buying new things without a real purpose is dumb
You know what I like to do? When my kids stop listening and they don’t share with each other and they don’t communicate well, I go out and buy myself a new car. I figure that I will get them all in the car and they will all be so enamored with the awesomeness of this thing that all the bad behavior will go away. They will start talking to each other and share their toys and we will all be happy! Except, the car has an internal DVD player and they want to watch different movies. Also, they are still mad at each other so they are still fighting. Now they are fighting in the new car and messing it up. Do I have to pull this thing over…and?
Yeah.. sounds silly, because it is.. Why would you buy new technologies to change behavior? In fact, why would you even think that a new technology by itself would change behavior? Does that make any sense to you?
So.. here is tool number 2
Change Management <–
Yep.. it isn’t the tool that needs to change.. it is something else..
You may consider that kindness (real kindness) is actually a good tool. Why? Because with kindness all things are possible and without it all things are not likely.
It doesn’t matter how large an organization you live in, kindness and respect are key to happiness. Being happy and purposeful are the fundamentals. You could drive the numbers up for a short time by making personnel cuts and/or introducing new technologies that are highly technical, however, you can’t keep them up without kindness, respect, and understanding.
A kind person with a clear understanding for respect and trust will always exceed in all endeavors. That person will be a force multiplier and people will follow and work for them without question. An unkind person will find themselves empty and alone in every aspect and it will impact all of the people around them.
If I am pointing out the obvious, why is it so hard for people to realize that these basic behaviors make people and organizations successful?
I am not offering a link to kindness, because there is a good chance that you know how to be kind. You either choose to be kind or you choose to be something else.
Low Cost KM
I offer this thought. If your organization has technologies to collaborate, store content, share content etc.. consider that you have most of what you need from a technological perspective (of course there are cool tools) but you need to focus on behavior. Behavior is what will drive productivity and behavior is what will change how things feel. If you create an environment of kindness. trust, respect, honor and loyalty, your organization will grow beyond your imagination. Would you share your greatest failures and success with someone you dislike or even hate? Knowledge sharing can only be successful if people are willing and able. The technologies can provide the vehicle for ability, but not for a willingness.
–Think about it//
Just in Case (3 other tools).. If you need a tech fix
1) Wandora is a desktop application to collect, store, manipulate and publish information, especially network model data and data about WWW resources. Wandora’s data model is multilayered and based on Topic Maps. Addition to topic map formats, Wandora imports RDF and OBO (Open Biomedical Ontologies) files. Moreover, Wandora can extract topic maps out of various file formats and web services.
2) One of my new favorites @ http://sotera.github.io/newman/quick-start/ for email analysis.
3)Always useful for knowledge mapping http://cmap.ihmc.us/