Ted Leonsis, for those who don't know, is a guy who made big bucks at AOL and is now owner of the Washington Capitals hockey team (CAPS Let's Go CAPS!) Ted also writes his own blog -really he does - and recently he posted this piece. In this post, Ted (yes, I call him Ted) asks if it ever does any good to blame the media for your troubles. He concludes that it isn't. He talks a lot about what he thinks you should be doing if you're in a position to need to control your image in the media and while that's helpful - I really like the article for what its not explicitly talking about.
The fact that it is Leonsis presents us with a nice comparison. Look at the beating that Dan Snyder (owner of the Washington Redskins football team - who aren't doing very well) is taking right now. Do as Ted suggests and go Google "Ted Leonsis" and see what comes up and then Google "Dan Snyder" and see what comes up. It's clear which owner is shaping the message - by PARTICIPATING in it.
This is a central lesson about social media - people are already talking about the stuff they don't like and the policies they don't like - by not fully embracing not just the technology of social media but its attendant CULTURE of openness and transparency (as Leonsis recommends) all that happens is you prevent the sharing of all the good stuff.
I think one of the big pieces here that might get missed is that Leonsis is not talking about a technology shift - he is talking about a mental shift, a cultural shift, a shift in how he thinks about his relationship with the media. I'd humbly suggest that organizations looking to implement social media or social learning (whatever the current term of art is) are confronted with a similar option-make this about more technology or make it about changing your culture and using technology to help.
If you are putting together a Social Learning plan are you budgeting for organizational design and change management issues? Have you thought about doing any ethnographic research before moving forward? Have you thought about how using these technologies might re-shape your corporate culture? We need to be thinking these things. These things are at the heart of what we need to do to really move forward.
Anyway, we are going to be running quick (40 min) sessions throughout the conference on a bunch of different topics (you can see the schedule at the link above). We also have some real superstars coming through like Jay Cross, Koreen Olbrish, Mark Sylvester, Robin Paoli and Aaron Silvers - to talk about a range of Social Learning topics.
Here is the kicker though - I can talk believe me - those of you that know me, know I am not kidding. Now I am more than thrilled, proud and happy to talk through the rest of the sessions but what I REALLY WANT TO DO - is use at least some of that other time as a bit of a 'BarCamp' - that is - ping me somehow and let's work out a time and topic - case study - plea for help - strategies for implementation - for YOU to share with US.
C'mon now, this is supposed to be SOCIAL so if you got two AWESOME slides and ideas you want to share - let's do it! You got a question you want answered? Bring it. Wanna vent? Rant? Well, OK but just watch the language. ;-) Anyway - let's make sure we use this time to get YOU what YOU need to take these ideas home and use them!
OK..so as you watch the video, imagine this smoothed out with telepresence-like fidelity.
We already know that Zombies will be attacking...I mean just look at what they are doing to the logo! If you aren't already clues into that part of it, you can learn all about it here. Aside from fending off the undead, I could use a little help personally - if you're already headed out that way (and if you're not, registration is still open!)
The main thing that I could use some help on is a little crowdsourcing for my Social Learning Workshop and Social Learning Camp. I'm embedding a widget below that links to the post-it board I've been using to help develop the material for both of these. Please feel free to visit the site and contribute anything you think that fits - resources, links, success stories, strategies, etc. You're also more than welcome to use whatever you find on that site in crafting your own presentations, talks, whatever - I mean, this is supposed to be social right? :-)
I guess that's it for now - except a blatant call to get on out to San Jose. This year's DevLearn is going to be awesome - great speakers - an alternate reality game and debrief - a Tweetbook already being planned - c'mon - you don't want to read about this one on Twitter. ;-)
So somebody recently asked me about a presentation on "Learning 2.0" Not the first time I'd heard this term, hell, I probably used it a couple of times myself. This time however, something really hit me. I need to read a lot more neuroscience and cog sci but I'm going out on a limb and saying that there is no such thing.
I know, cause I heard him say it myself, that Tim O'Reilly, the guy who started the whole "2.0" craze (or who at least at the meeting where it was started) did not use the term to denote an iteration but a break with the prior ways things had been done. SO I really don't believe that humans are learning differently - meaning, I think we are constituting memories, adapting behavior, practicing new skills - those activities that typically make up learning from the human standpoint - in much the same way as we have for hundreds if not thousands of years. I'm talking about our internal processes.
That doesn't mean that we haven't changed the mechanisms we use but the internal processes are very similar. So there is no "Learning 2.0" from the learners' view - there could well be "Instruction 2.0" or "Teaching 2.0" but think about what is really different there - those last two (and you could throw in Government 2.0, Education 2.0) address organizations and not learners and this gets to my second bothersome point about "Learning 2.0."
The use of "Learning 2.0" in my mind, puts all the burden of change on the learner. If they are all 2.0 and changed then clearly we (The Organizations) don't need to do anything on our end. Think about it - Government 2.0 as a term - talks about how the organization of government needs to change. IMHO, the use of a term like "learning 2.0" seems to absolve us of addressing the hard questions of how we need to change as organizations. Forget for a moment, about using Twitter for whatever or blogs for something else - do you need to have HR at the design table? What is predominant characteristic of your organizational culture? Is your technology woefully out of date? Does your office furniture suck and imparts to people a concrete idea of how the org REALLY values it "most important asset"? How do you hire? What kind of people do you look for?
Those are the dynamics that our learners are already operating in. Understand that environment. Figure out how to change that environment needs to change. Then maybe, we'll actually be getting to a "2.0" place. Let's put the burden on us and not on the learner.