Wednesday, February 23, 2005

What has Farida been up to since November?

My last post was in November sometime and I mentioned something about creating a blog strategy. So here goes... I did get my blog reviewed and got some guidance on little things I can do to have my blog picked up by search engines. If you are interested contact Bill Ives (his blog is linked on mine) and get Amanda's information. If you are already a savvy blogger you probably don't need a review.

A lot has happened since November, the most interesting of which is my role in the latest study on Communities of Practice as mechanisms of organizational effectiveness and innovation. Tall order for communities eh! But why not? If communities are going to play in the main tent, then they must show ROI just like the rest of the process improvement approaches in the marketplace. Now the study costs $16,000 to participate but I already have 23 sponsors, so you know that the topic is pretty hot these days. I am not sure if everyone knows how APQC runs its studies so I will give you a brief methodology overview.
The sponsors come together with APQC and we design a survey instrument to gather information that the sponsor group is interested in. APQC then finds 10-12 organizations that fit the bill of "best-practice" organizations that matches the scope of the study. In this case organizations that have used CoPs to enable organizational effectiveness and innovation. The sponsor group then chooses 5 of these organizations to site visit. A site visit is a face to face meeting with CoP practitioners for a day (6 hours or so. After all 5 site visits, APQC analyzes the data, writes a final report and finishes the study with a Knowledge Transfer Session in which all the sponsors and best-practice organizations get together in a 2 day networking session.
So, if you are interested in joining the study don't hesitate to call. I start traveling on site visits next week and my first visit is to Fluor Corporation in Orange County, CA. Poor me, I have to go to California:-))
The remaining organizations selected are Air Products & Chemicals, Arup Engineering, Ernst & Young and Federal Highway Administration. We will have finished site visits by March 16. Phew! My travel schedule is going to be a bear over the next two weeks.

Actually I am really really excited about this study and am looking forward to finding new and innovative lessons learned from these partners. I am the acting subject matter expert on the study and have to write the final report so I am really hoping that good things will come from the site visits. And they always do so no worries.

So, I am back on track and I will be posting regularly again so stay tuned. I will keep you posted on site visits, maybe see if I can encourage some discussions of findings, and although I cannot share the final report with all of you I can most certainly share some high level lessons learned.

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