Thursday, 23 June 2011

Using Content Curation as part of Performance Support (Part 3 of 5 – Finding a solution)

So how to you help staff suffering with ambient overload?  I referred to Jane Hart’s most recent book the “Social Learning Handbook” (January 2011 edition) and on page 99 found two nuggets of information:

1)  That L&D could “build a collaborative library of links to useful resources together with others in the organisation, which might also be rated by workers , for usefulness”.

2)  That “L&D professionals will have a big part to play in helping some workers acquire the new skills and literacies for effective working in the modern workplace, eg … to set up appropriate filters to deal with information overload.”

I work quite a bit with the marketing industry and content curation is trending in marketing at the moment so I saw a correlation between what Jane was recommending and what I had been seeing marketers do.  I found this definition of what a content curator does:

“A content curator is someone who continually
finds, groups, organizes and shares
the best and most relevant content
on a specific issue online.”  (Rohit Bhargava)

I wondered what would happen if we started to curate the user generated content from the learning sites, categorising it, directing it at relevant staff groups, collecting it together for the staff, so that they knew it was being captured for them in a way that would allow them to catch up easily and “stay in the loop” even if they weren’t able to do it in real time, all the time.  In addition, I realised that by doing this we could link the user generated content to the business by aligning it with the business goals, initiatives and current focus as well as fold it into the formal training programmes that L&D were delivering.

The first thing I did was set up a “Listening Service”.  In marketing, companies “listen” to social media to find out what people are saying about their brand.  We “listened” to identify content that others could learn from and core business themes as well as identify which staff groups the content was relevant to.

Next we assigned members of the L&D team to curate different themes based on their particular focus and expertise. 

Once we got going we realised that we needed some sort of framework to put the content into so that it was easy to use, search and communicate.  We wanted to curate the content to make it attract the staff back to the learning sites and to help with their overload. 

Next Blog:  (Part 4 of 5 – creating the framework)

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