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Blogs: Jive Talks

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I was excited for the opportunity to interview Alban Rampon, Enterprise Community Manager for the ARM Connected Community, as he is someone who is quite active in the Jive Community. Alban's WorkType profiles of Connector and Energizer made our interaction super smooth and extremely positive! Alban, I think your WorkTypes are right on! Thanks so much for being active in the Jive Community and for sharing a bit about yourself.


Leigh: Where do you work?

Alban: Hello Leigh, I work for ARM in Cambridge, UK. Not many people know us, but almost everyone is using our technology! Like a songwriter, we are commissioned to create the blueprints for chips. Then, for each song sold, we get royalties. For us to succeed, our partners have to succeed as the initial license fee is not enough to cover the R&D costs. Our community includes companies from every part of the ecosystem: semiconductor, operating system, mobile apps, etc. The chips are used in everything from vacuum cleaners, hard drives, mobile phones, tablets, cars and even in space. ARM Connected Community Partners List gives all companies who wish to publicly acknowledge enabling/using ARM technology.


Leigh: How would you describe your current job?
Alban: I am building relationships, connecting people and companies. I am the global community manager and community strategist and I'm delighted to have been invited to be a Jive Champion too.

Leigh: Hooray! Thanks for being a part of our Jive Champion program, Alban!


Leigh: Are you familiar with the Jive WorkTypes? If so, what was your WorkType?

Alban: Of course, I tried it as soon as the program was announced! My primary type is Connector and secondary is Energizer. I feel they are good matches. I tried the test a few times and I always get those two, even if the order sometimes differs.


Leigh: What was your favorite part of attending JiveWorld14?
Alban: Meeting the people I have been working with all year. I find the event exceptionally well organized. If you are working with online communities, I believe you should attend the event even if you're not yet a customer.

Leigh: So how do you use Jive at work (internal community, external community, etc.)?
Alban: We have an external support, partner, thought leadership and private collaboration community. We want to make the most of the platform!


Leigh: What's your computer situation... Do you use a Mac or PC (or something else)?
Alban: I use a PC with Windows and Linux. I've wanted to try a Mac to brand a mobile app for our community with analytics and URL pre-configured... I just haven't found the time yet.

Leigh: Tell us what you use for your mobile device?
Alban: I'm always on mobile and use an iPhone, an iPad and an Android smartphone . A community never closes.

Leigh: You got that right!



Leigh: Pick one word that best describes how you work.
Alban: I work on interruptions... except when I have my headphones on which means "please wait, your call is important to me..."
Leigh: So true! I think a lot of people work on interruptions, but you're one of the first to own it! Also, I like your strategy for limiting them.


Leigh: How do you stay organized? What's your favorite to-do list manager?
Alban: I love Wunderlist. They have been doing many integrations with other tools as well which is quite nice. I use it both at the office and at home, on all platforms... Give it a try, it's free.

Leigh: What you surround yourself with is important, what's your work space like?
Alban: I used to think it was clinical, until I looked at a picture of it . I tend to have what I need to do or need to think about on my desk. Also, I use a white board with notes to prioritize what I have to do. That's the best way I found to make sure I remember everyone/everything. I am so organized at the office that I don't like scheduling anything in my holidays.



Leigh: What do you listen to while you work?
Alban: I work in a noisy office with many people on the phone. When I need to focus, I put on my headphones with electronic music. I recommend deadmau5 and Daft Punk to guarantee isolation from ambient distraction!

Leigh: Totally agree that ambient distraction helps ensure isolation.


Leigh: Are you more of an introvert or an extrovert?
Alban: I am definitely an extrovert. However, I do enjoy thinking time alone very much too. If you ask, everyone will definitely say an extrovert though.

Leigh: What's the best advice you've ever received (and from whom)?
Alban: "Document on your community..." Most likely from The John Schwiller. Let me explain why! Everything you do in your emails is NOT scalable and needs to be repeated each time you have a new team member. Document once in your community and everyone will be able to help you. It's been useful so many times and it makes it so easy to on-board community members.

It was great getting to know you, Alban. Thanks so much for sharing tips that help you work most effectively. Does anyone have any questions for Alban?

Everyday I experience first-hand the passion our customers feel about Jive. Today's example of such passion: the UnJiveWorld 2015 Conference. 


Due to a change in scheduling our yearly conference JiveWorld, we ended up having to skip the calendar year 2015. The response was incredible. Not only were customers missing JiveWorld as a part of their Autumn community activities, they went so far as to purpose creating their own JiveWorld to fill the gap! And thus, the idea for UnJiveWorld 2015 was born.


What is UnJiveWorld?


According to Mahal Torres, Bay Area User Group leader, "In an attempt to build on the momentum from last year's JiveWorld, the Bay Area User Group steering committee (specifically John Summers) came up with the idea to have an UnJiveWorld all day event sometime during the 2015 calendar year."


Using the Jive Community as a base for collaboration, Mahal and the rest of the Bay Area User Group collaborated on how they thought this could all come together.


"My thought was that UnJiveWorld could include mini-presentations by members of the users group, based on use cases rather than technology, so we can share how we are using the platform to meet use case business goals," stated Kathleen McMahon. "For example, in my case, I'm an external support community and my main use case right now is an obvious one: call deflection. So I could do a mini presentation on how I'm using Jive to that end and what challenges I've faced, etc. And we could do a bunch of use cases for both internal and external."


The final proposal consisted of bringing together customers and partners who could speak on different topics of interest to the community. As a result, the UnJiveWorld 2015 place was created where members from across the community can contribute ideas they would like to see covered in the unconference agenda. Members then vote on these ideas in order to generate the final agenda.


Submit your idea for UnJiveWorld! Simply follow this template and submit an idea here.


Even though UnJiveWorld is the brainchild of the Bay Area user group, anyone who is interested can attend. For information on how to sign up, check out Save the date: Bay Area UnJiveWorld Conference October 15, 2015 in Santa Clara, CA or click on the Register to Attend link below.


Register to Attend



Thursday, October 15, 2015



8:00 am - 5:00 pm : Unconference

6:00 pm : After party (location TBD)


Unconference location

Hitachi Data Systems

2825 Lafayette St

Executive Briefing Center Lobby - MAP

Santa Clara, CA 95050

Customer host: Michelle Groff Burling


Some top session ideas include:

Gamification Session with Bunchball

Analytics Session

Challenges Facing Regulated Industries


A special shout-out goes to the Bay Area User Group planning team including: Mahal Torres, Kim Nelson, John Summers, Madalina Papacica, and Kathleen McMahon. At this time, several partners are sponsoring this event as well, including JCS Consulting and Bunchball.


Learn more today!

I greatly enjoyed collaborating with Clarissa Viana, Community Manager from Plusoft, in order to share her workstyle with others. Clarissa jumped out at me because she's on the top 10 leader board in the External Communities group. That's a hard thing to do! Also, being from Brazil, I was curious if there were any tactics, technology, etc., that those in different areas around the globe aren't aware of yet. Get to know Clarissa!


Leigh: Where do you work?

Clarissa: I'm Head of Community Managers (hopefully, it'll make sense) at iCustomer, a company of the Plusoft Group, located in São Paulo, SP, Brazil. Here we help other companies implement their own communities, but since this is pretty new here in Brazil, we have a lot going on here.

Leigh: How would you describe your current job?

Clarissa: I help my boss with the strategic planning, I'm responsible for the health of the communities we implement (doing engagement, monitoring activity and creating reports) including our own internal community and I manage the work of the CMs below me (there's currently only one, but as we get other projects my team will grow).


That's me and my boss, Thiago Velloso

Leigh: Are you familiar with the Jive WorkTypes? If so, what is your primary and secondary WorkType?

Clarissa: Yes, I am an Explorer and a Energizer.


Leigh: How do you think your WorkType plays into how you get work done in Jive?

Clarissa: My workstype plays well into my role as a community manager that needs to connect with everyone all the time and also help drive strategy. Seeing the big picture and having good ideas are awesome to help getting things started on the right foot.


This picture I took before we started one of our strategical workshops

Leigh: So how do you leverage Jive technology to help companies work better together?

Clarissa: It helps people get things done in a easier and faster way. I see some of my friend's that don't 'Jive' and they have tons of emails, several meetings to attend and it gets in the way of actually doing your job. What I like most is the fact that you work closer with your entire team even though you're cities apart.

Leigh: What's your favorite part about implementing Jive communities for your clients?

Clarissa: I like showing them how their lives will be easier with a community, and I really love seeing the results. I also like sharing best practices, seeing people connecting with each other...

Leigh: What's your computer situation... Do you use a Mac or PC (or something else)?

Clarissa: PC

Leigh: Tell us what you use for your mobile device?

Clarissa: I have an iPhone, and it helps me answer things, and read discussions and documents when I'm on may way to work.

Leigh: Do you have a favorite editing tool?

Clarissa: I looove Jive for Office! I keep asking people that want to send me an email to post it on our Jive Community, specially through Jive for Office. You can do basically everything in the document without the need of logging in. It's perfect for someone that handles a lot of content on a daily basis.

Leigh: Pick one word that best describes how you work.

Clarissa: Engagement


The gang from work. I made some great friends here!

Leigh: Besides Jive, what apps/software/tools can't you live without?

Clarissa: I really like Spotify because of the variety of lists they have, and when I was able to run (I'm recovering from some ankle injuries), I was addicted to Nike Running. But I also really need my Reminders app (from the iPhone), the Google Agenda tool, my Moleskine Planner and some post-its - you can't only trust your memory to get things done

Leigh: Do you have a favorite non-computer gadget?

Clarissa: I was going to say a digital watch with a timer feature, but then I realized my favorite non-computer gadget is actually my Moleskine 18-months planner. It's one of those special themed editions, with the whole Peanuts Gang, and it helps me get all my weeks organized.


Leigh: How do you stay organized? What's your favorite to-do list manager?

Clarissa: With reminders on my iPhone app, my planner (for personal appointments), and for professional tasks/ appointments, post-its, notes and lists on my notebook and sometimes, my memory.

Leigh: What you surround yourself with is important, what's your work space like?

Clarissa: My work space is kind of messy, because I always have tons of things in my mind - but if you ask me for something, I'll know the place of all my things. And I like to add some touches of fun to it - because life is already too serious.
Mesa 01.jpg

I'm kind of addicted to energetic drinks... but I also love tea!

Leigh: What do you listen to while you work?

Clarissa: It depends on my mood, but mostly to EDM (electronic dance music) and Foo Fighters (huge fan of these guys)!

Leigh: I've been obsessed with Dave Grohl and the Foo Fighters for quite some time, too! So I'm right there with you, Clarissa.

Clarissa: I'm very proud to say that I've been to 2 of the 3 concerts Foo Fighters played in Sao Paulo (or Brazil), including their first solo concert that happened January 2015.

Leigh: What's your best time-saving trick?

Clarissa: Getting your priorities done before you open your email or your Jive inbox, otherwise, you'll be carried away with new tasks and problems.

Leigh: How do you balance work and life?

Clarissa: I try to set a time for leaving work - and try not to take it home with me. Besides, if I have a personal appointment, I try my best not to miss it or be late for it.


The gang from my desk and my colleague's.

Leigh: What's your sleep routine like?

Clarissa: Between 5-7 hours are enough to make me feel rested.

Leigh: Are you more of an introvert, extrovert or ambivert?

Clarissa: I believe ambivert, because even though I talk a lot, I don't open myself to everyone.

Leigh: You might enjoy this article then, 21 signs you might be an ambivert from Buzzfeed.

Leigh: What's the best advice you've ever received (and from whom)?

Clarissa: My mom always says "in the end, everything will be alright. If it's not alright, then, it's not over yet." And it is true, it helps me control my anxiety to get everything done right away.

Leigh: Love this!


Thanks so much, Clarissa, for sharing your workstyle with everyone. Keep up the great work!


Do you have questions for Clarissa? Extra points if you can identify all of the toys in the picture above!

It was a true pleasure to interview Daniel Marotta, Community Manager at Penn Foster Education. Daniel caught my eye in the Jive Community because he's been a member since June of 2008 and he has quite a lot of connections. But, most importantly, he's got a great sense of humor which shines when he shares how he works in the correspondence below:


How I Work - Dan Morotta image feature.jpg


Leigh: Where do you work?

Daniel: I've been a Jive customer and community manager for 8+ years working across a half dozen industries. Currently, I work at Penn Foster Education. We are an online education provider headquartered out of Scranton, PA. We started out as a correspondence school helping coal miners receive on-the-job training. When the Internet came to be, we evolved our curriculum to take advantage of modern technologies. This year marks 125 years in the distance learning space.


Leigh: How would you describe your current job?

Daniel: I am the community manager here at Penn Foster. I execute on the overall strategy of our Student Community; which is to give our students a destination to meet their instructors and classmates, and provide them with resources to help them progress through their coursework. You can see how important a virtual campus can be to our students when compared to traditional brick and mortar institutions. I also dabble in our social media strategy.


Leigh: Are you familiar with the Jive WorkTypes? If so, what was your WorkType?

Daniel: I am familiar with Jive WorkTypes. According to the quiz, I'm a Planner / Explorer. Is that accurate? Well...yes, yes it is.


Leigh: How do you think your WorkType plays into how you get work done in Jive?

Daniel: It's fairly dead-on in how I approach my work on Jive. Every request for a new space or how content is served up or organized goes through a vigorous planning process on my end. I want to make sure it's user-friendly and scale-able. From there, I look (or explore) for ways to optimize the experience.


Leigh: Did your team have a chance to take the WorkType Finder quiz? Have you all talked about your results?

Daniel: After we got back from JiveWorld, the whole team took the WorkType quiz. Our results were all over the place; which I think is a benefit. We all have our own role within the team and complement each other well.

Leigh: What was your favorite part of attending JiveWorld this year?

Daniel: My favorite part of JiveWorld last year was seeing Adam Sadowsky of Syyn Labs demonstrate his Rube Goldberg Machines and the collaboration with OK Go; not to mention actually seeing and hearing OK Go perform on stage. Very cool.


Community & Social Team at 2014 JiveWorld's end-of-the-conference party in Las Vegas

Leigh: So how do you use Jive at work (internal community, external community, etc.)?

Daniel: Penn Foster has both actually; an internal and external community. Our internal community is used to traffic marketing and creative requests. Collaboration is an important part of this process. Our external community, the Student Community, is how I describe it above; for students to meet and interact with their classmates and instructors, provide them the resources they need to be successful students, and give them a platform to form study groups and find study buddies.

Leigh: What's your computer situation... Do you use a Mac or PC (or something else)?

Daniel: I live two lives as far as my computer situation. My work life is on a PC. My personal life is on a Mac.

Leigh: Tell us what you use for your mobile device?

Daniel: My mobile device is an extension of my personal life. You'll see me with my iPhone or iPad

Leigh: Do you have a favorite editing tool?

Daniel: I'm the idea guy. So when it comes to being creative, I let the designers and producers lead the way.

Leigh: Who’s your developer hero?

Daniel: I can't say that I have a developer hero. What about the guys on HBO's Silicon Valley? Can Richard and his Pied Piper team be my developer heroes?

Leigh: I'm with you on this one!

Leigh: Pick one word that best describes how you work.

Daniel: Reckless! I'm kidding, it's actually the opposite; carefully.

Leigh: Besides Jive, what apps/software/tools can't you live without?

Daniel: There's no one tool I can't live without, but I do enjoy demo'ing mobile apps. No specific category or genre. I just like to see what's happening across mobile.

Leigh: Do you have a favorite non-computer gadget?

Daniel: My favorite non-computer gadget? Hmmm...is my AppleTV considered non-computer? I don't know, this is a tough one. I do have a drone. I haven't mastered its flight but I'm practicing.


Leigh: How do you stay organized? What's your favorite to-do list manager?

Daniel: I use Wunderlist to stay organized. It's a great tool that shows a birds-eye view of personal to-do's and across a team so you know what your colleagues are working on.

Leigh: What you surround yourself with is important, what's your work space like?

Daniel: My workspace has a minimalist look; two monitors, wireless keyboard, mouse, and headset. The most important thing? My mini desk fan.


My work-space, sorry for potato.

Leigh: What do you listen to while you work?

Daniel: Due to the openness of our work space, I listen to a lot of co-workers chomping on food and their personal calls. BUT, if you mean what music I listen to, then it's my iTunes playlists and Pandora; a little bit of everything.


Leigh: What's your best time-saving trick?

DanieI: have two friends that are doctors. They are absolutely the best when it comes to time management. Sometimes Doc (Emmett is his real name), will pick me up in his Delorean and we will go for a spin. When I'm in that car, it's like time stands still. My other doctor friend is kind of a space shot. I don't know if he's coming or going. But when we hang out, times seems to not matter.

Leigh: Everyone should have time-saving friends like this!


The DeLorean with Penn Foster mug for scale

Leigh: How do you balance work and life?

Daniel: There's always work that needs to get done, right? But there's always a chance of burnout. So, I give myself specific "time to unplug" deadlines each day. Peppering in vacation days during long stretches between holidays also helps.

Leigh: What's your sleep routine like?

Daniel: My coffee addiction doesn't allow me to have sleep.

Leigh: Are you more of an introvert or an extrovert?

Daniel: You would think that since I am a community manager, I would be an extrovert. But in actuality, I would classify myself as an introvert. Sometime I just can't wait to spend quality time on my couch.

Leigh: What's the best advice you've ever received (and from whom)?

Daniel: "Don't eat any Chinese food today or you'll be very sick." -my fortune cookie

Thank you so much, Daniel, for sharing how you work with us. Keep us updated on your drone piloting!

Here at Jive our software isn't the only thing that keeps our company running. We would like to introduce to you the lovely Sarah Marx, who goes out of her way to do wonderful things for our office every day. At Jive we strive to maintain a family-like community between Jivers, however, we often times get lost in our work. Sarah ensures that we remain a tight knit community, keeping our employees happy and our company united. What would the Palo Alto office do without her?






Carmel Schetrit: What is your official title? What do you actually do?

Sarah Marx: I am Jive South's Office Manager. I have a wide range of responsibilities including but not limited to, receptionist duties, facilities management, and administrative support to the EA team if and when they need help with anything. I joke that I'm Wendy to Jive's Lost Boys and often lead with that when people ask me what it is that I do. On a daily basis I do a lot of calendaring, work with vendors and try to think of creative ways to keep our environment movin' and groovin', whether it's new snack offerings or planning a fun happy hour.



CS: Where do you work?

Sarah: I work out of the Palo Alto office (you can't miss me!) This position requires that I be present to greet people when they come in and make sure they get to the right place.


Girl and Her Pups.jpeg

Sarah With her Dogs in their favorite place on Earth

CS: How do you use Jive at Jive?

Sarah: I use Brewspace (Jive's internal community) all day long! I use docs in order to keep catering orders, office supplies orders, and etc, tracked. I also use it for small to large office communication, working with international Jivers, status updates, blogposts, and friendly reminders to Jivers. The calendaring system is especially useful to me when planning social events (like happy hours and the holiday party). I try to keep office communication to Brewspace and Chime (gotta use our product!)  I'm also on Jive Chime all day, everyday (even on weekends) to communicate with Jivers. Last year I was at JiveWorld14, right around the time Jivers were just starting to adopt Chime (beta). A customer came up to the Social Command Center (where I was stationed) in an absolute fury; he was extremely upset with his JiveWorld app and while one of us could have easily fiddled around with it to determine the problem and then fix it, someone mentioned that Iain Goodridge had handled the same problem with another customer but...we didn't have Iain's phone number. Luckily, I was able to Chime him and within two minutes, he came to the rescue to professionally and successfully fix the issue and sent a now-very-happy customer back on his way. Chime has continued to be a serious life saver when I need to get things done right away!



CS: What's your WorkType

Sarah: I am a Coach. I think this WorkType suits me because I love interacting with people and making them feel wonderful; if, at the very least, the most I do for someone's day is brighten it ever so slightly with a simple smile, I'll take that as a win. A huge part of my job involves people--customers, partner, Jivers, vendors, and everyone in between--which I can wholeheartedly say is my favorite part of this position. Being a coach is also evident in my Brewspace interactions, as I not only enjoy communicating and collaborating face-to-face but, also on a broader, more widespread level.



CS: What is your desk setup like?

Sarah: I sit at the Front Desk behind a barricade of monitors and a sign-in iPad. I have a JamBox on my desk that, more often than not, is quietly serenading me (and anyone in the lobby) with music. You'll hear anything from Stan Getz, Nancy Wilson, and Chet Baker, to PJ Harvey, The Beach Boys, and the Pitch Perfect Soundtrack.



CS: What's the one thing you've done that no one would ever guess about you?

Sarah: I'm a cliff jumper. Once, I was on a blind date on Valentine's Day, let's just say that things were not going well for him.  During post-dinner dancing and drinks, he leaned in... and asked, "What do YOU do to feel ALIVE?" Without skipping a beat, I said, "Cliff jump." Straight-faced, too (you know the look). The conflicting expressions of equal parts shock and awe on his face still makes me laugh to this day.



CS: If you had a spirit animal what would it be?

Sarah: Amy Schumer. But, if it absolutely had to be an animal, I would have to say a Chesapeake Bay Retriever; they're the sassiest canines out there.






Thank you for sharing with us, Sarah! We are so fortunate to have you with us in Palo Alto

We're so happy to introduce you to Deborah de Freitas, Spredfast's internal community manager (among many other things). Within the last year Spredfast rolled out both an internal and external community. And even though these tasks have kept Deborah very busy, she graciously shared her workstyle with us below. I must say, I absolutely LOVE the how Deborah supplemented her comments with visuals - I wish I could take a peak into her personal gif library!

Leigh: Where do you work?

Deb: I work at Spredfast. We build a smart social platform and offer services that help our customers be more successful with every social network on any digital screen.


Here's a photo of me at work:

deb spredfast office jive final.jpeg

Deb at her Spredfast desk

Leigh: How would you describe your current job?

Deb: I think of myself as a concierge. I share information, tools, and help employees do what they need more efficiently. My title is Employee Programs Manager and under that umbrella I manage our internal community, intranet and internal communications, oversee our travel program, and support internal events.  I jump into a lot of projects, but at the heart of all of them is helping our employees be successful.


Concierge slash elevator operator, sometimes it just feels that way


Leigh: Are you familiar with the Jive WorkTypes? If so, what was your WorkType?

Deb:  Yes.  I went through the navigator just before JiveWorld14.  In the big picture, I'm an Explorer.  When it gets down to details, I'm an Optimizer. (WorkTypes Descriptions)

Screenshot 2015-07-07 16.27.49.png

Screenshot 2015-07-07 16.29.05.png

Leigh: How do you think your WorkType plays into how you get work done in Jive?

Deb: As an explorer, I look for new ideas, new use cases, new ways to use Jive to communicate.  As an optimizer, I find ways to use Jive to improve existing processes and to ensure key content is updated and accurate.

Leigh: What was your favorite part of attending JiveWorld last year?

Deb: We were brand new to Jive, so for me it was just like drinking from the fire-hose.


professional answer: I loved learning about the platform, how others use it, getting ideas for our launch and for new use cases.

personal answer: I loved meeting all the people.


The Chandelier Bar at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, site of JiveWorld14


Leigh: So how do you use Jive at work (internal community, external community, etc.)?

Deb: We have both an internal community that runs on Cloud and an externally hosted closed customer community.

I manage the internal community which we call Sharefast. Shout out to my co-worker Samantha Lopez, who manages the Spredfast Customer Community.

In the internal community we have several use cases - some of the primary ones we focused on at launch this year were:

  • Replacing our intranet (which was on Google sites)
  • Replacing a WordPress internal product blog
  • Creating a central repository of updated responses for RFP questions
  • Centralizing communication of sales wins and customer launches
  • Circulating HR & Facilities announcements - seriously our Lunch Menu is the most read piece of content as it changes weekly and people check it daily.

whats for lunch.jpeg


Leigh: What's your computer situation... Do you use a Mac or PC (or something else)?

Deb: We use Mac primarily. Every employee gets a brand new MacBook on day one (Shiny!) and I will defend my 27" Thunderbolt display with whatever is at hand - so watch out because I'm sure scissors can be stabby and I'll definitely launch a binder clip in your general direction. I think there are a few PCs in QA or dev, but even our IT guy used to work for Apple so it's mostly Mac all the time around here. (Fun fact, I used to work for Dell, but I feel no guilt for my unabashed Apple love)

shiny fancy kaylee.gif

Leigh: Tell us what you use for your mobile device?

Deb: You'll be shocked when I say Apple iPhone right?  I have the 6. 

Leigh: Pick one word that best describes how you work.

Deb: Flexibility.

flexible gilmore.gif

Leigh: Besides Jive, what apps/software/tools can't you live without?

Deb: I'm an app junkie, so there are a lot of things I use, but a few of my favorites are:

  • Evernote - I put all kinds of things there for reference - recipes, articles I might want to share, brainstorming notes and more.
  • Facebook messenger - I like being able to send a message to someone without the intrusion of a text - they can reply when they want.  I have this looooong running message thread between two mutual friends who live in a different city.  We named the thread "Tea for 3" and we check-in during the day when we have time.  You have no idea (well maybe some idea after reading this) how excited I was when they added gifs to messenger!
  • CARROT - they have several apps and I love them all.  Their weather app is hilarious and really accurate too.  The alarm is one of the few that gets me up and makes me laugh. I've just never been a morning person.  (Night Owls Unite!)  and their ToDo app rewards you for getting things done (although I sometimes use other apps or old fashioned lists to plan things out.)
  • Google Maps - I create custom maps when I travel and share them with anyone I'm traveling with.  (Fun fact, I've been on every continent except Antarctica)  I love traveling and have taken at least a year sabbatical between every major job change - basically I work to save up money and then quit when I am ready for a change and travel for a while and then come home and decide what to do next.  In between those big travel years - which is usually solo travel - I'm the planner for group travel with my friends and try to go somewhere - even if it's a road trip every few months. 

deb david glacier.jpg

Speaking of travel, here's Deb on a glacier

Leigh: Do you have a favorite non-computer gadget?

Deb: Hmm... this is tough - all my favorite things like my kindle or my fitbit are technically computers. My husband would probably name something fancy in the kitchen, but honestly he's the chef not me.  I'm gonna say my Philips Sonicare Diamond Clean black toothbrush. I really love it and it makes my smile brighter.


Leigh: How do you stay organized? What's your favorite to-do list manager?

Deb: I write a lot of lists. I learn and remember best when I write things down so I always have some sort of notebook with me. I usually write notes and ideas in meetings and I write out lists of action items daily and revise my master list at least weekly and then add the most important or timed things to my google/work calendar or to my to do app (see above). I can be kind of a productivity geek so I've tried just about every to-do app out there, but none of them are perfect for me so I keep going back to paper. I keep folders for projects and using the GTD style try to keep the next action on my list.  Honestly this makes me sound super organized, but my priorities change constantly so I usually feel a bit chaotic. 

I find that what works best for me is that every night before I leave work, I just figure out what the most important thing to do the next day is and limit myself to three things max on the plan for the day. (read about the 1-3-5 rule)  Less if I have more than 4 hours of meetings. In the morning I make sure nothing has happened to change that plan and then start working on those items first. I get a lot more done than just those things throughout the day usually and do try to follow the rule of if it takes less than 2 minutes just do it instead of adding it to a list or calendar. (That's where Carrot can get fun - getting credit for all those little things you do.) If I don't start like that my whole day becomes responding to emails and drop-bys.


Deb's favorite notebook, the Moleskine Cahier

Leigh: What you surround yourself with is important, what's your work space like?

Deb: Within arms reach is always water, some sort of toy, a plant, my phone, a notebook, and folders for active projects. I try to keep my desk fairly clean so I can spread out projects and not lose my keyboard. I keep my computer on a stand and use the notebook screen for Slack and email and then use the large display for whatever I'm working on. I use Chrome and have multiple profiles set up for my different roles so I can change between "People" and it keeps all the logins for that profile in one place.

Leigh: What do you listen to while you work?

Deb: Usually I just listen to the hum of my co-workers and music from our kitchen/lounge. Sometimes I'll put the headphones on and start a Pandora station. I've tested out Focus at Will and found it helpful as there are a lot of distractions in our open plan office, but usually the general hum is energizing. I love music so it can be more distracting for me than office noise.  Plus, I'll spend way too much time trying for the perfect playlist.


Leigh: What's your best time-saving trick?

Deb: Reminding myself that perfect is the enemy of good. Just get it done, get it out there and improve upon it. Spending time in startups has taught me that quick iterations trump long planning and execution in dynamic environments.


Leigh: How do you balance work and life?

Deb: We have a cultural value at Spredfast called "Freesponsibility" - basically the marriage of freedom and responsibility. There is a high level of trust given that you will get your work done and be responsible for your commitments to the company and in return we are given the freedom to do it our way. So I may spend the morning working from home but getting up early to be on UK time for travel planning, and then have a lunch appointment out, then work in the office or from a coffee shop for a few hours before heading home.  I may come in at  7 (not typical - see the morning person note) and work until 3:30 and head out early.  I may come in at 10am and work until 7pm (more typical for me). But I know as long as I make critical meetings and meet the goals I've been given I can work around what I need to do personally. 

I also balance at a high level by setting goals for myself each year for the people I want to spend more time with, the things I want to have accomplished when the year is done, and the places I want to go. I keep those goals in mind each week and if I haven't seen someone on my list in a few weeks, I make it a priority to spend time with them. If I haven't had a trip in a few months, I start planning my next one. And if I haven't made progress on one of my goals, I block out some time to get some next steps done.

Leigh: What's your sleep routine like?

Deb: Well, left to my own devices I would stay up into the wee hours and sleep until noon - that's what I do on vacation. But during an average work week, I try to get off the computer (and phone) by around 10/11 to start settling down. I try to be in bed by 11 and reading so ideally will be asleep by midnight, but it doesn't always work like that - live music shows, watching that next episode on Netflix, or really engaging books often keep me up past my bedtime. I wake up between 6am-8am most mornings during the week. (Sleeping later if I'm working from home or don't need to be in the office until 10 I sleep as late as possible on the weekends.)

Leigh: Are you more of an introvert or an extrovert?

Deb: I'm a social introvert, an expressive introvert. I'm not shy and have no fear of public speaking or crowds, but they do drain me so I need time to recharge. If I get overwhelmed I find a corner and stare at my phone until I can leave. I have found that I must have at least 1 day a week where I don't have to leave the house or deal with people much to function at my peak. That down day, which usually involves a lot of reading, swimming, Netflix, and cats, gives me enough of a recharge to last the week.


Leigh: What's the best advice you've ever received (and from whom)?

Deb:  I love quotes and have a few that have become mantras to live by - here are 3 of my favorites.


anais nin quote.jpg

Thanks so much Deborah de Freitas for taking time out of your very busy schedule to share your workstyle! We look forward to hearing about the continued success of Spredfast's internal and external communities.

Please take a moment to say "hi" to Deb and thank her for such a great interview!

For the second interview in our series we had the good fortune of interviewing Ryan King, he is the Senior Manager of PS Engineering and told us a little bit about himself in and outside of work.


Carmel Schetrit: What is your official title? What does it mean?

Ryan King: I'm the Senior Manager of PS Engineering in Professional Services. As part of the professional services team we deal with customers to make sure they're using our products successfully. There are many different aspects of ensuring the customer is successful, my team does the customization work. This means that they write the code to make things happen.




Ryan's selfie taken from his home office.


CS: Where do you work?

Ryan: I mostly work from home but I make sure to come into the Portland office a few times a week.


CS: How do you use Jive at Jive?

Ryan: I try to never not use Jive, whether it means using it to schedule real time meetings with my colleagues or using it as a substitution for email. Jive Chime and Brewspace are always open on my screen (unless I really need to concentrate). I push people who communicate with me via email to use Jive channels. The various Jive platforms help me do every part of my job on a daily basis. I use them to plan out my resources, including locating which engineers are working on which projects, scoping out estimates for customers, collaborating with my team when I work from home and making sure the project management teams are on the same page as far as how each project is resourced. As someone who partially works from home these channels are extremely valuable to my team's productivity and success.


CS: What's your WorkType?

Ryan: I am an Optimizer. I'm always trying to find a better, easier, faster way to get things done. My team has managed to automate a good portion of processes in PS. My team has managed to take our customization release process, which used to be a 30-60 minute, manual and error-prone set of steps, and reduce the time required to less than five minutes, with a simple push-button mechanism. In addition, the nature of our work is such that we work with hundreds of customers everyday and we have to do many of the same tasks for each one, the less time it takes us the more profitable we are, while still maintaining high quality of work.


CS: What is your desk setup like?

Ryan: My home setup is minimalistic and has a window with an outside view of my backyard (trees, bushes, etc.).  During the winter, it can be quite gloomy and dark, so I took a picture of my backyard, and created a Hue light bulb scene, so I can turn on my office lights and have the same colors in my room to brighten the day.


CS: What's the one thing you've done that no one would ever guess about you?

Ryan: My wife and I used to be total soccer haters, we even vowed that our kids would never play. Somehow this vow didn't stick and my kids began to play the hated sport. My wife and I grew to love it because of our kids and now we play and coach all year round. You could even call me a soccer fanatic.


CS: If you had a spirit animal what would it be?

Ryan: Platypus because it's a little bit of everything.




Thank you so much for taking the time to tell us a bit about yourself. It was great getting to know you!

So you want to write a blog?


That's fantastic! As community managers and evangelists, we are often in the position of blogging in our own communities. In fact, you might want your community experts and advocates to feel empowered to write blogs about their subjects of expertise and their passions as well. Blogs are a great way to tell a story, educate your readers, and have fun!


Here's the thing: all blog posts are not created equal. Depending on the voice, the sentence and paragraph length and the value to the reader, a blog can be incredibly engaging or totally miss the mark. Since we want all blogs to be amazing and create connections with our customers, prospects, and others, I've come up with these five tips for successful blog posts.



Five tips to better blogs


1. Use the title to communicate value

What will readers get from the blog? Your title should clearly communicate to readers why they should read the blog and what they will get from it in the fewest words possible. See the title of this blog? Pretty clear, I hope. I want to help you all become amazing bloggers and so I came up with a short list of things to do to help you with that goal. I could've called the blog "Let Our Voices Be Heard" but that wouldn't really communicate what you're going to get from this content, would it? And since SEO is an incredibly important thing to consider for blogs, so be sure to connect with an SEO expert to see if your title can be optimized. See Search Engine Optimization (SEO)


2. Write in your talking voice

When writing a blog, it's more engaging to communicate in a casual personal tone. Blogs should be written in the first person (I did this, you can do that). You should be able to visualize speaking the blog to a person and them hearing it as part of a conversation. If your writing tends towards the news article style, a good tactic is to record yourself explaining to a real person what the article is about. Then write that down and it can become a blog.


3. Use lists, short sentences, short paragraphs, images

People do not have tons of time to read these days. And a whole bunch of readers are scanners. Be sure to write your blog with scanning in mind. Lists are a great way to pull content together in an easy-to-scan format. For paragraph style, break long sentences into shorter ones, be sure to organize sentences into topical paragraphs. A paragraph should be around five sentences long. Double space between paragraphs and break them up with subheadings that catch the readers attention. Add images to break up text and add visual interest.


4. Provide value to the reader

Writing a blog to get something off your mind is fine, but even better is to figure out how your thoughts can be helpful to your readers. You may have a great story to tell, but be sure to link it to some take-aways for your readers. Take some time to think about who your audience is and what they care about. Then be able to answer the question: why should the reader care about this blog and what's in it for them?


5. Finish off with a call to action

What's the final take away? Do you want readers to attend an event, read something in greater detail, watch a video or download a white paper? Even if the call to action is more conceptual (such as asking readers to consider the ways they can use your product) that's okay too.


While this list is not all encompassing, these tips are a great way to get started and to be sure you are hitting the big marks for blogs.


Try your hand at a blog today!


I'd like to challenge all of you to give these tips a try and write a blog this week.

  • Take a subject you feel passionate about and tell your story in your community.
  • Review and edit your blog to cover the tips above.
  • Collect feedback. Find a writer you admire in your own community or company and ask them to review your piece.
  • Determine the best place to post your blog. Depending upon the content and subject matter, your blog could end up on your community, on LinkedIn, or your personal blog channel. You can even try your hand at blogging in our Blogs: Social Business blog channel here in the Jive Community. I'll get to review your blogs before they are posted. Guidelines are here: Blogging Guidelines.


And remember to have fun!


NOTE: If you would like to use this post in your own community to help encourage bloggers, feel free to copy and paste! Simply add a line attributing the content back to me here in the Jive Community. Thanks!

As Jive customers, you may have had the opportunity to work with Jive employees who have left you wanting to know more about them. We'd like to give you the opportunity to know a little more about the people you work with on your implementations and upgrades in our new blog series: Meet the Jivers. We're starting with Christy Schoon who has helped many of you get started using Jive. We hope this gives you the chance to get to know her a little better.


THIS ONE .jpeg

Christy recently came into our Jive Palo Alto office



Carmel Schetrit: Could you start by telling me your official title and what you actually do?

Christy Schoon: I am Senior Strategy Consultant in Professional Services.  I get to work with lots of different types of customers on internal and external community launches, upgrades, and health checks.  If you look at a community launch from three aspects: Technology, People, and Business - I focus on the People and Business.  In strategy, we focus on things like program strategy, identifying and developing use cases, measurement, adoption planning, governance, gamification, and the list goes on. Even though I talk about the same topics almost every day it's never the same because the customers aren't the same. I love what I do!



CS: Where do you work?

Christy: I am based in Denver so when I'm around I work from home. Half of the time I'm traveling which means I often work from the back seat of an Uber car, airport chairs, hotels and customer sites. But I would have to say that the most interesting place I've had the chance to work from is Tokyo. Fabulous sushi and wonderful people.



CS: How do you use Jive at Jive?

Christy: I use both Brewspace (Jive's internal community) and the Jive Community all day long. I use Brewspace in order to get answers on questions from product experts. I also use it to connect with colleagues especially since I work remotely and I feel that engagement is extremely important to me. I'd go crazy working from home if I didn't have Brewspace.  I use the Jive Community to work on projects with customers, every customer has a private project where we collaborate. I also like to participate in general conversation about internal and external communities. I use the desktop and mobile version of Jive Chime to message co-workers. Since I am constantly on the go I use Jive in all of its forms. From my desktop, tablet, and phone - it allows me to always stay connected.


CS: What is your WorkType (TM)?

Christy: I'm a Producer and my secondary WorkType is Coach. I think this means I like to cross the finish line. I don't always take the time to appreciate the journey. But I'm working on it. Especially with my secondary WorkType being a Coach I think that means that I do sometimes get to appreciate the journey from the beginning through someone else's eyes and see things a little differently (while still helping people cross their finish lines, of course).


CS: What is your desk setup like?

Christy: During a video conference one of my co-workers called me Harry Potter because my setup at home is a desk under the stairs. I live in a loft so getting creative for space is essential. My cat sits in a box on my desk, this way he feels like he's keeping me company but doesn't keep sitting in my monitor stand and blocking my view. The loft style office can get loud at times and I have to admit that I've taken calls in the pantry before...it's not pretty.

christy desk after box.jpg

Meet kitten in the box.


CS: What's the one thing you've done that no one would ever guess about you?

Christy: I'm a certified sommelier.  My husband says that means I'm a wine snob.  It really means I know just enough to be dangerous.  If you ever need a wine and food pairing suggestion let me know!


CS: If you had a spirit animal what would it be?

Christy: I have no idea what my spirit animal would be. I'm a voracious reader. So maybe a bookworm? That's kind of gross. I'd love to say something cool like a lion but I'm drawing a blank.  Bookworm it is.


Christy's kitten is a bookworm as well.


A huge thank you goes out to the brave Christy for being the first interviewee! It was a pleasure getting to know her better.



If you have questions or comments, please post them below! What is YOUR spirit animal?

When I say the word "brand" are thinking... whatever, who cares? That's easy enough to understand if I was talking about another logo or another set of corporate colors. For Jive, our motto of Connect, Communicate and Collaborate needed to come alive. And it did on canvas.


Only Art is Human


For Jive, our brand is something we live and breathe. It's part of what makes us Jive and makes us human. It was with those thoughts in mind that we launched a new brand last year which was the result of an online collaboration between artists. A group of fine artists came together to collaborate on making their pieces work together regardless of the medium. Some artists used canvas and paint, others fabric and some were digital. In case you missed that story, you can read more about it here: Only Art is Human: The Story Behind Our New Brand - Jive Software



You'll notice some of the art above in our community headers and textures


Turns out that we won an award for this brand approach: Jive Wins 2015 PR Daily Award and Unveils the Jive Canvas Project - Jive Software and it kicked off another great activity for our offices, the Jive Canvas Project.


Art Brings Us Together – The Jive Canvas Project

The exciting thing about our brand identity is that it continues to evolve. It lives and breathes as our Jivers and our community provide input and break out their own inner-artist to paint a picture of the Jive brand.


Such was the case a few months ago when we decided to take three core attributes of Jive — connect, communicate and collaborate — and do something unique and fun—and totally outside the usual day-to-day activities of a global tech company. We celebrated them.


Last fall, across the U.S., U.K. and Israel, Jive employees took their creativity and the passion for what they do, and turned it into abstract art. Each location worked together to produce their interpretation of the Jive brand on canvas.


The thing is, we’re used to working together across continents, without borders. But the outcome of this project—seeing an actual, physical example of our collaboration? It was even cooler than we’d imagined.


How we did it


As with all good things, the Jive canvas project kicked off with a festive happy hour in each office. Jivers were then equipped with blank canvases, acrylic and tempera paint, brushes, markers and other tools aimed to release their creative mojo. Soon, people from all parts of our business—co-workers whose paths wouldn’t naturally cross—were collaborating, talking and literally getting their hands dirty.


I hope you enjoyed this story behind the Jive brand.

May it inspire you to use your communities in surprising ways to connect, communicate and collaborate!



Did you know that Jive's Connect, Communicate and Collaborate Roadshow Series will be visiting a city near you?


We would like to cordially invite anyone who is interested in the forefront of the social business revolution including Marketing, Service and Operations leaders to our Connect, Communicate and Collaborate National Roadshow Series in:


Why attend, you ask?We've custom-designed our two track session to cover the needs of IT and line-of-business leaders. Both tracks will cover real-world practices for leveraging Social Business inside( Internal Communities) and outside( External Communities) your organization. You'll leave armed with:

  • The know-how to make social a strategic part of your business
  • Hear from a business leader on how they’ve implemented social to produce measurable business results
  • In our track sessions, learn more about the business value or technology innovation
  • Network with fellow trailblazers who are looking for new ways to engage their employees, customers, and the broader social web
  • Provide better service and loyalty while reducing operating costs
  • Drive co-innovation from customers, partners, as well as colleagues and team members
  • Drive connectedness and alignment with corporate strategy across the team and company
  • Capture, centralize and share institutional knowledge
  • Modernize your intranets and portals to get all employees engaged
  • Foster innovation while maintaining necessary enterprise controls

We believe that our products unleash ideas and inspire the people who matter most to your business. Your employees. Your customers. Your partners.  Imagine your employees informed and aligned. Your customers and partners engaged. Everyone working together in ways that deliver the most value for your business – regardless of where they are, what device they’re on, or how they prefer to work. To that end, Marketing, Business and IT leaders will come together to listen to a keynote by some of our most interesting customers along with the Jive POV, presented by a Jive executive host.


These sessions will not be a series of one way monologues. Come prepared to interact, ask questions and connect with others who find themselves facing the same kind of challenges you face and ultimately change the way you view social business.


Join us at our complimentary Connect, Communicate and Collaborate Roadshow Series and take the first step to truly engaging your employees and customers. You can't afford not to.


See you there!


Register now #Jiveconnect15 in #SanFrancisco and #Austin



Marriott Union Square Hotel

480 Sutter Street

San Francisco, CA 94108
(415) 398-8900


Date: Tuesday, June 23 2015

Time: 3:00pm-7:00pm




Omni Austin Hotel Downtown

700 San Jacinto

Austin, TX 78701

(512) 476-3700


Date: Thursday, June 25 2015

Time: 1:00pm - 6:00pm



*Registration is complimentary

Developer, Partner Community, Jive User Groups, Jive Customers

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.


How I Work - kate bellard .jpg

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:

access denied.jpg

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.


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.

house of cards.jpg

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.

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.


adoption 1.jpg

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.

adoption 2.jpg

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.

adoption 3.jpg

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.

adoption 4.jpg

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.

Jive is excited to be co-sponsoring a booth at the Marketing Nation Summit today through April 15 in San Francisco. The slogan for this conference is 'Inspiration in the Nation.' There is clearly a lot to be inspired about with over 6,000+ marketers attending, 100+ sponsors, 100+ engaging sessions, and keynotes from Arianna Huffington, Phil Fernandez, Salman Khan and John Legend.


If you have the pleasure of attending, visit the Marketo Community Lounge Powered by Jive at booth #425. Here are the top 5 reasons to do so:


1. We've got the power!
With all the tweeting you'll be doing, you're going to need to recharge your devices. Stop by our Powered by Jive charging stations with your charger in hand - we have plenty of standard outlets!

2. Meet Marketo champions
Meet Marketo certified experts and community users - they'll be present to answer your toughest questions. You can always reference this great document by Wim Stoop that shares specifics about the ability to integrate Jive communities with Marketo, which was rolled out in the Winter 2015 cloud release: Marketo integration - FAQ

3. Enjoy Mom's cookies
Every conference has afternoon doldrums. Channel your inner cookie monster because sugar, butter and flour will fix your energy slump.

cookie monster.gif


4. AJA: Ask Jive Anything

Do you have a customer community? Do you know how consumers make choices? Here are some interesting stats about customer communities:

92% of global consumers trust personal recommendations over any advertising

84% of worldwide consumers take action based on reviews and recommendations of trusted sources

95% of Millennials worldwide want brands to court them


The Marketo Community Lounge will feature an 'Ask Jive' bar. Stop by to learn about the new Marketo Marketing Nation Community, Jive-x and to see a live demo of Jive-x.

You'll be able to meet these friendly Jivers at the booth: Billy Volpone, Sam Nik-Pay, Jonathan Guzman, Belinda Joseph, Sandra Cheng, Jon Phipps, Stephen Salazar, Jackie McElaney.


5. Get a sneak peek of the New Marketo Marketing Nation Community

Marketo's Global Nation Builder, Scott K Wilder,  Marketo's Senior Community Manager, Liz Courter and Jiver Cathy Won will be leading a session: Introducing the New Marketing Nation Community! Marketo's community, over four years old, is embarking on a new chapter in which they will provide members with a new experience and capabilities. Catch a sneak peek of the New Marketing Nation Community launching in May at this session.


Marketo employees, are there other activities that we should be getting pumped about at the Marketing Nation Summit?

Glen Lipka, Nathan Brauer, Mark Siciliano, Emir Elliott-Lindo, Bharti Hathalia, Scott K Wilder,Bill VanderWall, Jeff Young, Kenneth Law, Davis Lee, Jenny Chang, Lou Beckert, Lynn-kai Chao, Mahesh Jeswani, Vinish Benny, Vic Madrigal

Adoption. There, I said it. I got it out of the way. In fact, I'm gonna say it again: adoption. When I work with our customer teams responsible for rolling out and/or maintaining Jive, that word (adoption) evokes a bit of uneasiness. It's as if adoption has become synonymous with monster and it's easier to look the other way than stare it down in its brutal face. And for good reason.


  He's not very scary once you get to know him.


Driving adoption calls upon us to be good (I mean, really, really good) at managing change. See, therein lies the catch: change management is more or less dealing with change for other people. It's not just your own reaction to the change that you have to worry about. No, it's the reactions of hundreds or thousands. In order to truly drive adoption, we have to anticipate how the people within our organizations are going to react to the change and have a plan to address those reactions.


It doesn't matter if you are about to launch Jive or launched Jive several years ago, change management is equally relevant to preparing for launch as it is to expanding the use of Jive across your organization over time. And it really doesn't have to be as daunting as it may seem. This blog series will focus on change management as the foundation from which you can successfully drive adoption. The series will focus on three topics:


  1. The basics of change management
  2. Do's and don'ts of managing change
  3. Lessons learned from our customers

The series will focus on internal community challenges though many of the points are certainly relevant to external communities as well.

What is change management?

Change management is an entire field in and of itself. As a field, it was born by combining the engineering field's mechanical focus on change (systems and processes) with the psychology field's human focus on change (people). In large part, this is because the concept of change management began in the manufacturing industry and that industry's focus on achieving efficient, systematic quality. For our purposes, let's simply think of change management as a methodology that is used to transition teams and/or organizations from a current state to a desired future state. It's a mouthful, I know.Let's break it down as it applies to a Jive internal community:

  • The current state = the existing intranet, email, and/or other tools that may be used inconsistently across the organization
  • The desired, future state = all employees on Jive, using it consistently across the organization
  • The transition = everything that you're going to plan and do to make the desired, future state a reality -- to get all of your employees on Jive and using it consistently across the organization

Or, if your organization is already on Jive, it might look more like:

  • The current state = Department A using Jive as if they wrote the book on best-practices, but Department C avoiding Jive altogether and using email
  • The desired, future state = Department C using Jive even half as fantastically as Department A
  • The transition is everything that you're going to plan and do to make Department C use Jive even half as fantastically as Department A


See, the transition is where the change management happens. Articulating the current state is comparatively easy. Articulating your desired, future state is also comparatively easy. The hard part is figuring out what you need to do to make the change happen: the transition.


   Change management in action: the transition is life or death for this little guy


If the transition is where the change management happens ... how does it happen?

There are many schools of thought about change management. Most notably, there is John Kotter's seminal eight step process and Jeff Hiatt's ADKAR model. If you have time to study Kotter and Hiatt, I encourage you to do so. If you don't, then I humbly offer a synthesized version of all I've learned and taught about change management as it relates to Jive through the Five W's + H + R (the R is my addition) that many of us learned in grade school: what, why, who, when, where, how, and report. The R is pretty important to change management.



You have to be able to explain what it is you are trying to accomplish. Customers who have worked with me probably get sick of me reminding them to focus on the what first and before anything else. It's very easy to jump straight to the how. After all, that's where the solution is and it's way more fun to think about the answer. But first, tell me: what's the what? Your "what" may be similar to the statement that describes your desired future state. Or, this may be refined to be a bit more tactical. Try to find a way to state it in one sentence or a even better, a few words. Think of defining your what as if it's a tagline you want everyone to remember. Think about it from the perspective of the audience. Think about it in terms of an actionable statement (hint: actionable = using a verb). For example, "Enable online collaboration hub for reseachers" is a much stronger statement than "Researcher collaboration group."



Once you are able to articulate the what, you need to be able to state why it matters. This is essentially a matter of stating the value proposition. Think about it in terms of your audience wanting an answer to the question "what's in it for me?" There are times when the reason why it matters cannot be articulated by thinking through why it matters for the audience. In these cases, think about engaging leadership to communicate the what and why statements. In so doing, your why statement essentially becomes leadership directive, which is often an excellent motivator. If you can get leadership to deliver the what/why messages, even if it's not a leadership directive, it creates a valuable sense of urgency and natural buy-in.



This one is simple but easy to overlook. Who will be impacted by the change? Really, really think this one through. It's easy to overlook all who may be involved, but this is critical to understanding if different populations require different messaging and/or instructions. Often it takes thoroughly diving into individual use cases to identify all of the parties involved. The time is well spent since the second part of this step is understanding the population(s) in order to tailor communications to them and more effectively socialize the change. For example, you might find that your who consists of end users as well as organizational managers.



Timelines help us process and accept the change we may feel inclined to resist. It's the difference of being told you have to have surgery vs. you have to have surgery next week. The latter allows us to more readily accept what's about to happen. The former creates more anxiety because we are not sure how long we will be in the uncomfortable state of certainty. When you think about communicating the timeline, allow yourself a bit of buffer in your all-employee communications. For example, if you are targeting an April 15 deadline, tell your general population the change will happen in the second quarter. As you get closer, refine the communication: it will happen in April; it will happen in mid-April; it will happen on April 15. Of course, you will have to communicate the dialed-in timeline to leadership and the project team, but you can save yourself from having to reset expectations by keeping it vague at first and refining along the way.



Think about this in terms of where the action will happen. If it's an intranet replacement, this may be as easy as turning on your computer, going to your bookmarked URL and voila you're in the new intranet. If this is a more in-depth use case, the "where" is likely a container in your community. For example: A space in which to do X or a group in which to do Y.



Once you have your users where you want them, it needs to be very clear what actions you want them to take (or they can take). This will vary use case to use case, but if you think through the details of what the user will do, then you can design places within your community to facilitate these actions. For example, going to a help space and not having it be immediately clear how to find an answer or ask a question creates a frustrating user experience. Design to facilitate desired actions whenever possible with lightweight how-to instructions available for those who need such tools to reinforce their learning process. Try to keep the detailed how-to instructions to more complicated processes.



Finally, it is crucial to determine how you will know you've been successful. What will you measure? How will measure it? To what will you compare the measurement against (baseline) to demonstrate improvement over time? But here is the more crucial part: once you know, share it. Report out on your organization's progress. Celebrate the wins and be transparent about where there is still room for growth. Even better if you can put a goal around it that leadership supports as a key priority.


  These change management steps will help you get to the future state


Now what?

You may arrive at your five W's + H + R in a different order than what's shown above. That's okay. For any future desired state, you may have numerous W's + H + Rs. That's okay, too. For every what, you may have multiple why's and who's, etc. That's also okay. Just remember to phase what you tackle so that it is manageable. Taking a phased approach not only keeps your workload more sane, it also makes the change easier to manage for your organization. Guide the change you want to see and let the structured methodology of change management help you drive more adoption across your organization. Think about what that is meaningful to you right now. Then think through why it matters. Then think of who it will impact, when they will need to make the change, where it's going to happen, and how they will do what you need them to do. Then, think through how you will measure your success.


Put together your plan and you'll be ready to start driving adoption!


In the next part of this blog series, we'll cover the do's and don'ts of change management.


See: Part 2: Best Practices for Change Management in your Community

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