Some of you may know that I’ve closed my business and moved out of legal .  I am now working as a knowledge manager at a large construction company.  While it’s been awhile since I last posted to this blog, it’s been difficult for me to give it up.  I’m not sure I’m done with legal either (I do miss it), but, the fact is that I just done have the time to keep it updated.

I will continue to blog at Strategic Libararian and will be including posts on knowledge management and intranets on that site.  In addition, I am now editing the Pinhawk Librarian News Digest.  In addition to it being an email newsletter, my editorial comments for each issue are posted on the Pinhawk Blog.

Finally, I will leave the site up for a while yet, but am hoping that someone may be interested in the site as well as the domain.  If you have any interest, please contact me at nplatt@ninaplatt.com.  I am also looking for someone to take on the Law Firm Intranet LinkedIn group as well.

I hope you’ve found something useful while visiting.

I’m a bit tardy in reminding readers about the IBF 24 annual event hosted by the Intranet Benchmarking Forum on May 17-18, 2011.  Paul Miller, IBF founder and CEO, talks about preparations for the event in a video blog post on Intranet Life

IBF 24 is a free 24 hour web event that gives us an inside look at some of the best intranets from around the world with input from intranet gurus whose names you will know doubt recognize.  The current schedule is as follows (note: the schedule is still being updated).

  • Sherry Turkle, author of Alone Together
  • Charlene Li, social media thought leader and co-author of Groundswell, talking about her latest book “Open Leadership
  • Lee Bryant, keynote speaker and co-founder and Director of social business consultancy Headshift
  • Brian Solis, Future Works
  • James Robertson, Step Two Designs
  • Wayne Clark, Best Companies
  • Gary Swart, oDesk
  • Ross Dawson, keynote speaker, author and expert on teh future of business and technology
  • Peter Hinssen, Managing Partner of Across Technology and author of “The New Normal
  • Adam Pisoni, CTO and co-founder of Yammer, who will join directly after a Yammer press event announcing the company’s vision and product news that will further strengthen Yammer’s integration into the enterprise system landscape
  • Live intranet tours from Google, BT, IKEA, Alcatel-Lucent, AT&T, Abbott, Oxfam International, Aviva, Verizon, Duke Energy, Reynolds Porter Chamberlain, British American Tobacco, WWF, European Space Agency, Bell Labs,  Booz Allen Hamilton and many more!

If you haven’t attended this event, you might want to plan on it this year.  One of the great things about the event is that you don’t need to attend for the entire 24 hours if you need to work or don’t have the where with all to stay up for 24 hours.  In the past, I’ve noted the parts of the program I was most interested in and worked out attending with my schedule.  If you can, you may want to attend the entire 24 hours for all the ideas and insights you can take in.  I’m going to give it a try.  Did someone say caffiene?

Another Friday and a few more articles worth reading:

James Robertson (Step Two Designs) produces another winner Column Two blog post with Planning your SharePoint intranet project where he provides best practice methodology as he admonishes:

SharePoint does, however, introduce some new questions into the intranet planning process. The greatest strength of SharePoint is its breadth of functionality, from content publishing and collaboration, to CRM and application development.

It is this wide range of capabilities that can be so daunting for many teams. Without a clear plan, the results can become a little bit of everything, but no one clear and compelling success.

Stephen Byrne (also from Step Two) follows suit with Listening for intranet success.  He discusses soft skills needed to create a successful intranet:

  • building and maintaining stakeholder relationships and networks
  • coaching and inspiring others
  • building trust during periods of change
  • using people-centred research techniques such as interviewing, focus groups, facilitated workshops or anecdote circles

and points out that listening is the most important skill to use when undertaking the tasks listed above.

While a bit dated (written in Feb) Toby Ward’s CMS Wire article, Small Business Intranets, There’s More Than SharePoint, provides good alternatives for firms that don’t think of their IT departments as development groups.  He quotes Michael Jones:

“SharePoint is most certainly overkill in most cases,” says Michael Jones, Marketing Coordinator for The ADWEB Agency that produces Intranet DASHBOARD, an Australian-based intranet solution. “It’s like using a commercial harvester to prune your roses, or implementing SAP at your local convenience store. SharePoint is effectively a development platform which companies can use to create an intranet, but unless they have complex custom requirements (and a large development budget), SharePoint isn’t the right tool to use.”

and points out that “the price tag of an SP intranet for 100 employees is often in the US$ 10,000 to $30,000 range.” 

SharePoint can be a very expensive proposition.  I know some larger firms that budgeted $1,000,000+ for their SP initiative.  I’ve also heard of other firms that found that SharePoint was a bit like the old house in the movie, The Money Pit.

On his own blog, Intranet Blog, Toby Ward provides tips on how to get support for your project in Selling intranet 2.0 to executives.   He followed the post with a webinar,  Strategies for Selling Social Media to Target Audiences in Your Organization, where he and Shel Holz covered:

  • How exactly engaged employees contribute to your business.
  • How to determine the best mix of communications tools to meet the needs of different employees (e.g. which medium for which message).
  • Overcoming the challenges of using social media in multinational organizations.
  • Different social media platforms for different environments.
  • Case studies examples from leading companies

Have you read an article, seen a presentation, etc. that you felt was particularly valuable?  If so, I would love to hear about them via the comments!

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