Thursday, May 22, 2008

Politics Of Collaboration

A must read post by David Coleman of Collaborative Strategies - The Political Conundrum of Collaboration.  David walks us through the various collaboration technologies that vex the CIO/IT team in organizations but empower people and processes.

I can especially relate to the story of the "Disgruntled Collaborator". 

Many IT departments today fail to understand that you can not and should not always take the traditional project management/systems development life-cycle approach to organizational collaboration (process or tools).  I am not saying to throw process out the window, but collaboration involves people, process, and technology and screams for a more iterative (collaborative!) approach to defining the need, picking the tool, and implementing the process and tool.  The process needs to take days or weeks not months or years.

Moving forward with collaboration is not an all or nothing proposition.  I am a firmly believe that an organization, no matter its size, needs to form a strategy for leveraging knowledge.  But, not having a strategy in place should not keep you from moving forward with solutions that empower and enhance productivity.  This is especially true given the low cost of SaaS (software as a service) collaboration technologies.  You can start down a path that provides immediate value and then as the strategy and architecture around knowledge management and collaboration are formalized a reevaluation of the current solutions can be undertaken.

The bottom line is that collaboration and collaborative technologies are all about connectedness.

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