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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.

 

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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.

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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:

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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, Internal Communities and 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 Jive 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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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Kate with her former coworker in Singapore in front of the Marina Bay Sands hotel

 

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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.

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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.

As promised in the first part of our series on adoption and change management, Jive Talks: What's In It For Me? An Adoption St... | Jive Community, this second installment is all about the do's and don'ts of change management. This will not be an exhaustive list, but rather a list of eight items to help you wrap your head around best practices for change management and avoid some of the most common frustrations.

 

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Developing a plan for change management  will help increase adoption in your online community.

 

1. Focus on the early adopters, not the resisters

Change always brings out two camps of people: resisters and early adopters. Our tendency is to persuade the resisters to embrace the change, which is not surprising since resisters tend to be very vocal. The good news: these vocal resisters are usually the minority and they also tend to be chronically unsatisfied. So, what should you do? Don't ignore them (I know it might be tempting). Hear them out, address their concerns and be prepared to hold the line (stick to your plan). Accept that you will have to be okay with the resisters being unhappy. Address their concerns professionally and with only the necessary time then move on to work with folks eager to adopt.

 

Early adopters will be your advocates. They will be your allies. They will be your enthusiasts. They will be your evangelists. You won't even have to look that far for them. They will likely reach out to you. When they do, find a way for them to participate and be engaged so you can reap the benefits of their desire to help you drive the change.

 

2. Ask why five times

We know resisters are going to resist. While you don't have to modify your plans to appease them, you can't ignore resisters. When someone resists, ask them why (not why they are resisting, but why they don't like XYZ).

 

Keep asking why questions until you get at the root cause. In asking follow-up questions, you will be able to determine if a complaint has some validity and if the feedback is more than just a reaction to change. Getting to the root cause can make the feedback actionable, giving you what you need to modify (as appropriate) your plan for the better. The process of diving in deep to someone's concerns also helps them feel heard. Feeling heard can go a long way in shifting a resister to be an adopter. Try to dig until you have that aha! moment of understanding what's really going on.

 

3. Always think about your audience

Change management requires thoughtful communications. These will help you gain traction during change. Work back from your audience's perspective and formulate your message in a way that will be meaningful to them. We know change can induce discomfort and in some cases, fear. An audience-focused communication plan can help mitigate fearful reactions.

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Use an audience-focused communication plan to map out what to say to each audience and when to say it.

 

At one point in my career, I helped develop plans to reduce a company's energy expenditure. The plan focused on optimization of equipment and processes. At the same time, mass layoffs were occurring. I helped the leadership teams understand that employees made a mental connection between the energy saving measures and layoffs. At one facility, site leadership took this to heart and presented their energy reduction goal both as a percentage reduction and the number of jobs saved. This allowed the site manager to cut through an initial reaction more quickly, have honest communication with his employees, and ultimately secure employee support to help achieve the energy savings goal.

 

4. Believe you can never communicate enough

We are all busy. We get distracted. Sometimes we don't hear everything said during a presentation or read the message thoroughly enough. We miss important information all the time. It's going to happen and that's why it's imperative to believe you can never communicate enough.

 

In your communication plan, map out what you need to say to what audience and when. Ensure that communications are meaningful and actionable. If the communications are "just to inform" be sure to include key information. Here's the trick: look at how frequently are you keeping the various audiences informed of the change. You'll know the right cadence for your organization but don't let too long lapse between communications. Basically, it's better to communicate frequently and make every message meaningful and actionable.

 

5. Be kind and understanding: change is never easy

The only thing harder than making change is accepting it. But seriously, when you're driving change, it's hard to put yourself on the receiving end. You've been a part of the change from the beginning and by the time you start informing people, the change is old news to you. When you've been so close to something for so long it can be a little shocking when people respond negatively and often passionately so. Brace yourself for it. Take a breath. Think about puppies or kittens and drop your defenses. Responding kindly and with understanding will go a long way in disarming a resister and moving them into a productive conversation.

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When addressing a negative reaction, try to respond from a calm understanding place in your mind.

 

6. Assume good intention

When someone offers feedback, especially negative feedback, assume that their intentions are good. Assuming this allows you to process the feedback in a more objective manner. You can then more easily synthesize the feedback into something actionable that will improve the experience and/or the processes driving the change. Plus, assuming good intention will help you stay positive and focused.

 

7. Share results early and often

As soon as you have results, share them. The change doesn't have to be complete before you share results. Remember, results can be quantitative and qualitative (ideally you'll have both). Let the data tell the story. If it's not the story you want, don't avoid sharing it. Rather, share in context with the course corrections you will make to get the effort back on track. Once you start sharing, don't stop. Report results monthly, and maybe even weekly. The data, both qualitative and quantitative, will help you build and maintain momentum.

 

8. Celebrate in meaningful ways

Learn how your organization most appreciates celebration. Banners and balloons? Pizza and ice cream? T-shirts? Executive recognition? It's important to celebrate in a way that is meaningful to the audience. What's even more important is to acknowledge something worth celebrating. A celebration-worthy event can be a milestone or goal to which you're working toward. When you're ready to celebrate, don't forget to pause and feel dang good about what you've accomplished.

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Celebrating accomplishments is an important part of change management.

 

These best practices won't alleviate every pain point along the way, but they will certainly help in resolving them faster. They are also a good reminder that change management is hard for so many of us (because change is hard)! Know that you're not alone.

 

Stay tuned for the final installment in this blog series which will feature a change management perspective from one of Jive's customers.

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