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WARNING: This story is not for the faint of heart, may be a little long-winded, and will probably sound familiar to a lot of you.


Sit down, let me tell you a story

This one is a mystery story... It's about a community -- a community a lot like yours! It was launched rather quickly, owned by many, driven by reactive need, and grew and grew until it resembled a version of the Winchester Mystery House.


   The Winchester Mystery House is down the street from where I live, and yes, it's a little creepy.

Now, if you are not familiar with the Winchester Mystery House then you are missing OUT! The Winchester Mystery House is a mansion in San Jose, California, which was once the personal residence of Sarah Winchester, the widow of gun magnate William Winchester. The story goes that Ms. Winchester was haunted (probably with a guilty conscious and a pile of bad dreams) which led her to remodel the house, under her day-to-day guidance, without interruption, for like 100 years. OKay, not really a 100 years but it was a really long time and she died at a fairly old age so you do the math. You see, she believed her family and fortune were cursed by the ghosts of people who had fallen victim to Winchester rifles, and that only by continuously building them a house could she appease these spirits. SOURCE: My memory from several midnight flashlight tours and of course Wikipedia.


What you don't realize, however, is how crazily insane this house really is: Stairways to the ceiling. Doors that open to blank walls. Doors that open to sheer drops. There was clearly no design plan (because the ghosts were leading the way, duh) and what design there is appears to have been done by a crazy person (a very tiny old crazy person because the some of the steps in the house are only 4 inches in rise and I've seen pictures of Miss Sarah-stands-for-Sassy Winchester).


The Jive Community is a little bit like the Winchester Mystery House.

Imagine spaces and groups with no management. Groups with no content. Groups and groups and more groups, almost 4000 of them! Questions being asked and no one there to answer them. There's a lot of great information here and so many great people but some of them are stuck at the top of the staircase leading nowhere and others might even be stepping through the door that drops to the floor below. In case you've had that experience, I'd like to apologize. Seriously.


So I got hired to rebuild the Jive mystery house.

construction me.jpg

   Getting ready to start remodeling: I heart Photoshop


Rebuilding plans are happening behind the scenes.

We are:

  • Launching a Governance plan - We are formalizing a governance team at Jive to manage the community refresh and ensuing use cases. We've identified three tiers of governance: Strategic, Operational, and Tactical. Altogether, the governance team involves almost 20 people in the Strategic and Operational tiers alone. These are the people who will be driving the decisions that you see here.
  • Developing a Roadmap - We engaged Jive Professional Consulting to treat us just like they would any of you. They've done a ton of research is how the community is used to today then interviewed a large group of stakeholders to determine where the community needs to go. The result is a roadmap which I am working to get approved by the executive sponsors and the strategic steering committee.
  • Examining top Use Cases - Working with the Governance team and business stakeholders, we are evaluating concepts and resources to determine that gets done first.


So, it's going to take some time, but this is a priority for the entire company. I'll continue to share updates in this blog as we know more. I hope you are excited as I am!


By the way, we might keep one or two wacky doors or hidey-holes because let's face it, mysteries make life interesting. Right?


   Stairway to nowhere. See? I was not kidding.

6 AM. It's a little too early for my brain to be functioning, however, when my dogs wake me up with their list of demands there's nothing else to do but make a fresh start to the day.


   Could you resist these faces? I think not.



And once my mind is even a tiny bit awake, I start thinking. What am I thinking about, you ask? I am so glad that you want to know.


I'm thinking about you. And the Jive Community.


In the last three weeks, I have been trying to get a handle on the work that's been done in Jive with an aim towards making the Jive Community better. It's a serious project, folks. Lots of documents, schedules, budgets, discussions, and of course, meetings meetings and more meetings.


I'm going to pull the curtain aside for just a moment to let you in on a little secret. Jive is just like you -- we are just like any other company. Don't get me wrong, the answer to "do we engage in social business?" is always going to be an unqualified "for shizzle!" (which means yes, BTW). At the same time, we still have stakeholders, committees, collaborative decision making, and all of the other things that can slow down progress.


In all of this, I can't stop thinking about you. At the end of the day, you don't care about our budgets or who will do what. You just want to get answers and make your own sites better. I'm feeling you, I really am.


So I'm going to start my own group in the community called: AureaWorks Community Help.


The unofficial slogan will be: Getting 'Er Done in the JC: Making your experience better.


Off the top of my head, I'd like to address:

  • Are you new to the Jive Community? Tips for getting started. See The specified item was not found.
  • Profiles - best practices for completing them. (side note: we are looking at how can we make these more meaningful as customers, partners and Jive employees.) Not yet done.
  • Rules of engagement - seems pretty basic, but the Jive Community does not have these. Say what? It's true. Terms and Conditions
  • Getting around the JC (that's the Jive Community) - most people who come here are looking for answers. My bet is that there are some pretty well-worn paths that people take and I'd like to make these clearer to navigate. About the JiveWorks Community
  • Jive information integration - there's a lot going on outside the JC that should be more integrated within the community, such as the support documentation, the Jive Software web site, and others. Let's get people pointed in the right direction. We are redesigning our home page to search from multiple web locations for answers, hope to have that done by the end of the month.


Other important things to note:

  • Look-and-feel - that's right, the Jive Community will be getting a makeover. We've got a brand refresh in the works which is happening through the summer months (into August) and we will be making the JC look gorgeous as a result. In the meantime, I'll be focusing on the points above.
  • One last tidbit: SPAM. We've had quite a lot of it lately, so I'd like to ask for your help in flagging posts that do not belong in the Jive Community. Sales pitches, links to outside web sites, you get the picture. You can flag them and they will land in the moderation line-up. Max and I will be working on buttoning the site up to unwanted posts. See Best Practices for Spam Management in Jive (NOTE: you'll have to join the Jive Customer's group to see the post).


I'm off to go make my new group now and will add the link back into AureaWorks Community Help here...