Social software within companies is a rather complex project. Not as a technical matter. You may choose and deploy among a large set of more or less complete out-of-the-box solutions. The hard thing is to get people to use them. How do you get your employees to share their knowledge using social collaboration tools? Well, that is the real question. And I am sorry to say that I don’t have the complete or perfect solution to offer in this post; however I do have some parts to share.
Knowledge workers are usually very eager to help each other and share their knowledge to peers. At least when asked to. But to get them to write a blog post or share their thoughts as a tweet (or similar micro-blogging service) is very much harder. Especially to get them to write the very first one. And this should not be very surprising.
In my earlier studies of social activity within companies I actually found out that one of the largest barriers and most tricky obstacles to climb is the very first post. As a new writer is very easy to think twice about such things as: “How should my first post look like?”, “Will I forever be judged depending on this very first post?” or “Will people go back to this very first post?”. Like, if the first post is going to be the first chapter of a book. And to some extent that is of course true. However we must not emphasize the impact of the first post, and we need to help our employees to write their first post.
And to be honest, your very first post will usually not have that much readers (obviously, since you have not written anything before) so why make such a big deal of it? Just write it. Continue. And learn from others. That is what sharing and knowledge transfer is all about.
If I thought twice before posting this? Actually not. And I guess that is the reason that it actually was published. So let us all forget about thinking twice when writing our first post, deal!?