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Communities of Practice © Copyright Fred Nickols 2010.

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Presentation on theme: "Communities of Practice © Copyright Fred Nickols 2010."— Presentation transcript:

1 Communities of Practice © Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

2 Objectives Distinguish CoPs from other groups Make a case for their potential value Touch on a couple of Dos and Donts Answer whatever questions I can 2© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

3 Two Different Worlds… World A Formal organization Designed organization Hierarchy (Vertical) Authority of position Reporting relationships Defined processes Formal T&D Work as described Abstractions World B Informal organization Emergent organization Network (Flat) Authority of competence Working relationships Proven practices Situated learning Work as performed Experiences 3© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

4 What theyre N T Organizational unit (OU) Ongoing operational team (OT) Project team (PT) Task force (TF) Social network (SN) Community of Interest (CI) Faux team (FT) 4© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

5 PurposeMembershipAuthorityAllegianceCohesion Results from Resources AssignedPositionalUpward Leadership & Relationships Ongoing – Until Reorganized Ongoing Tasks AssignedPositionalUpward Task Dependencies Ongoing – Until Reengineered Time-bound Tasks/Results AssignedPositionalUpward Leadership & Relationships Inception to Completion AppearancesAssignedNon-Existent Fragmented or Non- Existent Management Pressure Until Disbanded or Fades Away Information Sharing Invitation & Approach InformationNorms Value of the Information Ongoing – Until It Dies Out Stay Abreast Invitation & Approach KnowledgePeers Level of Interest Ongoing – Until It Dies Out Develop Expertise Invitation & Approach ExpertisePracticeIdentity Ongoing – Until It Dies Out Duration OU CP OT TF FT SN CI 5© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

6 What They ARE Groups of people (network not hierarchy) that form to share knowledge about their work (a.k.a. their practice), learn from one another about that work, and provide a social context for that work (i.e., to establish and maintain their identity) 6© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

7 Practice Practice versus process Three defining characteristics: Joint Enterprise Mutual Engagement Shared Repertoire 7© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

8 Hierarchy 8© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

9 Network 9© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

10 CoP - Examples Xerox copier technicians Pharmaceutical reps (drug detailers) Software developers Chrysler corporations tech clubs Production line technicians Test item writers & psychometricians Research chemists Instructional staff at Navys IT School 10© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

11 Companies using CoPs 11© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

12 Why You Should Care Financial returns far outweigh any investment Schlumbergers oilfield engineers $200 million in cost savings and new revenue 75% decrease in time to update modifications 95% decrease in time to solve difficult problems Xerox field technicians $15-20 million in annual cost savings $100 million cumulative 50,000 tips in their database 12© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

13 Why You Should Care CoPs are valuable organizational assets Decrease learning curves Handle unstructured problems Play a key role in developing and maintaining long- term organizational memory Reduce rework and reinvention Increase innovation and speed Create social and intellectual capital Contribute to increased retention of talent Make change stick 13© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

14 Some Dos & Donts DO Nurture and support existing CoPs Cultivate and support new CoPs DONT Mandate CoPs Manage them in a heavy-handed way 14© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

15 Improve Consulting Skills Task Force An assignment Time-bound Deliverables Finish up Get back to work Apart from me Non-sustainable CoP A practice Open-ended Performance Continuous It is the work My identity Sustainable 15© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

16 Q&A 16© Copyright Fred Nickols 2010

17 Contact Information Fred Nickols Managing Distance Consulting 1558 Coshocton Ave Mount Vernon, OH

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