Libby Taylor and I recently had the good fortune to catch up with the fast moving Kate Bellard, the enterprise community manager at Cameron. She's been a community member for the last two years and we asked her to share her experiences with us today.
Kate Bellard wears multiple hats as a community manager although none of them are in this picture.
Leigh Pankonien: Let's get started with an easy question, where do you work?
Kate Bellard: I work at Cameron. We design, manufacture, and service equipment used worldwide in the oil, gas, and process industries. You can check it out at: www.c-a-m.com
LP: How would you describe your current job?
Kate: I'm the Enterprise Community Manager for our internal community, Linx. Like many Community Managers, I wear multiple hats - Strategist, Community Builder/Manager, Project Manager, and Internal Communications/Brand Ambassador. It's a dynamic, challenging role that allows me to meet and work with all levels of employees and be involved in all facets of our business.
LP: Are you familiar with the Jive WorkTypes? If so, what was your WorkType?
Kate: I'm an Energizer and a Connector.
Using her two WorkTypes, Kate can meet new people in impossible ways.
LP: How do you think your WorkType plays into how you get work done in Jive?
Kate: I thrive when I'm on-the-go: meeting with employees, running from meeting to meeting, wearing my strategist hat. I really enjoy seeing employees have that "ah-ha" moment when their wheels start turning on how they could potentially transform their business processes and incorporate social business into their daily job. The opportunity to connect with new people and motivate them to do something different really excites me.
LP: So how do you use Jive at work (internal community, external community, etc.)?
Kate: We are using Jive 6.0.3 as our internal communication and collaboration platform. With Linx, employees can search for answers to their questions, connect with SMEs, keep up with the latest Corporate, Divisional, or Departmental news, share best practices and ideas, and engage with leadership. Currently, our intranet is hosted on SharePoint 2013. Almost all company news now resides in Linx, but it's featured on our SharePoint homepage. Essentially, SharePoint has become the front door to Linx and employees can choose to keep their content in a SharePoint teamsite or Linx group/space - they decide which platform best suites their needs. Long term, it's one of my goals to move our intranet to Jive.
LP: What's your computer situation... Do you use a Mac or PC (or something else)?
Kate: It's complicated. The administration of my company PC recently changed to a system controlled desktop (rather than a Kate-controlled desktop). It's like this:
If any of you have a controlled desktop, I'd be interested in learning how you work with your IT department to test and deploy Jive downloads. What do you say, Jive Internal Communities and Jive External Communities?
LP: What do you use for your mobile device?
Kate: iPhone 5s - I had to get a new phone after returning home from JiveWorld13 because my purse was stolen in Vegas!
LP: Pick one word that best describes how you work.
Kate: Strategically. I think big picture; I'm one of those people who needs to remind themselves to live in the moment and not in the future. In terms of getting work done, I identify a handful of strategic initiatives for the year and map out smaller action items to help me achieve those goals. For example, this year I'm focusing on:
- Use cases. Identifying and developing wide and deep use cases with the help of Aurea Professional Services. It will be a much easier intranet transition from SharePoint to Jive if the content and places already reside in our community.
- A knowledge sharing case study. A group of students from Rice University are evaluating Cameron's current and prior attempts at developing a knowledge sharing platform for the company and making a recommendation for a process that will succeed. Recommendations could include tweaks to the Jive platform (enhancing search and navigation and integrating with other document management systems), incentivizing employees to share knowledge by tying activity to performance evaluations, rebranding our community with a second awareness campaign, etc.
- Jive 8 upgrade. I'm eager to move to Jive 8-n. Some of the features that I'm most excited about are the News stream, ability to auto-subscribe employees to custom streams, place categorization, place pages, and promoted content. Oh, and an improved mobile experience for our employees!
- Executive Participation. I'm working on a creating an executive participation plan to educate and train our executives on the small and big ways they can participate in the community. I think it's important that they lead by example - most employees see the value of improved collaboration and engagement, but some have been hesitant to take time away from their daily job to participate. If our executives are not only contributing, but also recognizing and rewarding employees who are active in the community, it will help eliminate any concerns about community participation and knowledge sharing in the organization.
The superhero field service technician bobble head is something that Kate's working on for the next Linx awareness and training campaign.
LP: Besides Jive, what apps/software/tools can't you live without?
Kate: I love my iPad and Apple TV.
LP: How do you stay organized? What's your favorite to-do list manager?
Kate: In order to stay organized, I need to be focused and energized. I turn to exercise to help me remain alert, energized, and in good spirits. I'm a regular at barre pilates and rhythm based spin classes.
Also, I'm pretty old-school when it comes to my to-do list. It's a great feeling to be able to scratch something off a list, so I keep everything written down and listed in my notebook. At the start of each week, I review my notes from the previous week and start a new, prioritized list of action items.
LP: What you surround yourself with is important, what's your work space like?
Kate: I can't sit still at my desk for too long and I'm often out conducting training at some of our locations around the world. So I'm surrounded with a bunch of swag - either promotional materials from marketing campaigns and fun little trinkets that I've picked up. Below are some pictures from my world travels in 2013.
Kate with her former coworker in Singapore in front of the Marina Bay Sands hotel
Kate says, "I took a boat from Colico, Italy, to Bellagio for the day (sadly, I didn't spot George Clooney!)"
LP: What do you listen to while you work?
Kate: The beat of office chatter, foot traffic, and conference calls. I like to be immersed into the chaos that surrounds me and I feel a little too removed from my work environment if I have headphones on.
LP: What's your best time-saving trick?
Kate: Prioritization! Set realistic, achievable, and measurable goals. Work SMART.
LP: How do you balance work and life?
Kate: This is always an interesting question to me. For me, going to work, setting goals, and having a sense of accomplishment have become such an integral part of my life that I don't really view my work life separate from my personal life. It's never one versus the other...it's more of blend. Working is one of the things that brings joy and excitement in my life. With that being said, I'm not working 24/7 and think it's important to turn things off and have some personal time to re-energize - that's where working out and social activities on the weekends come in. Mobile capabilities make it pretty easy to monitor things while still remaining unplugged.
Unplugging in Sinaia, Romania, with her boyfriend (who was living in Bucharest at the time).
They toured the Peles Castle and the Bran Castle, home of Count Dracula.
LP: What's your sleep routine like?
Kate: I typically get 7-9 hours of sleep each night.
LP: Are you more of an introvert or an extrovert?
Kate: I'd describe myself as an introverted extrovert. I'm more of an introvert on a personal level...I tend to observe the environment and people in social settings before fully jumping in. BUT in a work environment, as I've stated above, I really enjoy meeting and working with people and helping them strategically use Jive to solve business challenges. I'd much rather be on-the-go than sitting behind a desk. I think I perform better when I'm in roles or situations that put me a little out of my comfort zone. It forces me to be more focused.
LP: Finally, what's the best advice you've ever received (and from whom)?
Kate: The oil and gas industry is facing some challenging times. Our executives are encouraging all employees to "be engaged, flexible, and focused." I think it's important to carry this mindset at all times, not just in the challenging times. When I was approached about the Community Manager role, I was working in HR. I had no idea what a Community Manager did, nor had I seen myself working in any other realm besides HR, but I was open to the change and optimistic about a new opportunity. And now I can't imagine doing anything else! Life can be unpredictable but if you remain engaged, flexible, and focused, anything is possible.
Thanks so much Kate Bellard for taking time to talk with us about your workstyle! We look forward to seeing where you take Linx and any community updates you provide on your progress.