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1 Post authored by: brett.blackney

Working Out Loud

Posted by brett.blackney Oct 22, 2014

I just got out of the Working Out Loud Session at JiveWorld and it sure was loaded with some great information that I just needed to share!.  The session was kicked off by Bryce Williams the Social Collaboration Consultant for Eli Lilly.




Bryce shared how Eli Lilly uses "The Loop" (Jive @ Lilly) to work out loud and how they have helped drive success with this in their organization which is outlined in below photo:



If that photo means nothing to you, here is a quick break down of what all those acronyms stand for:


  • WOL = working out loud (observable work + narrating work)
    • Find the maximum appropriate audience and getting the info. to them with some context provided
    • Creating visible work as we are actually doing it
    • EXAMPLE of WOL at Eli Lily - Clinical Innovation at Lilly – using jive platform to work amongst a team to figure out innovative ways to change the world of pharmaceuticals.  They also push out blogs to the rest of the community letting them know what they are doing helping gain insights from others in the organization as well as keeping everyone in the loop of whats going on.



  • AOL = asking out loud (reuse awareness + expertise discovery)
    • Creating a community to ask questions so others can see the answers, and allows peer to peer support to take place
    • Example of AOL at Eli Lilly: They have set up expertise communities for mobility, byod, iHelp (transferred salesforce from PC to iPad’s only), etc. to allow employees to find information and ask for help from the experts in one place, which has helped deflect activity from their help desk


  • SOL = shifting out loud –(open leadership + open innovation)
    • Leadership leading in an open way
    • Bringing ideas to the top of the organization
    • Example of SOL at Eli Lilly: TEDxLilly was an idea that came up and they wanted to put to action – they used the Jive community for recruiting planning team, volunteers, ideas for speakers and themes…also had people submit ideas on how Lilly can help make life better to get a ticket to the live viewing



  • LOL = learning out loud –(Discovery Skills (search, browse, filter))
    • As people work, ask, and capture ideas and leadership concepts out loud, the rest of the organization is learning as all of this happens in real time and learns how to find it for later
    • What skills do I need to develop to make sure I can find the info. I need…how to search, filter, browse, etc.
    • Example of LOL at Eli Lilly: Created the community 'Loop Help' to provide training on how to use the community, find answers quickly, and get the most out of it.



Next on the stage, we had Dennis Pearce (Enterprise Knowledge Management at Lexmark International) who shared that they work out loud with Jive to improve innovation, agility, customer line of sight and organization learning.  He explained that when working in the community, we need to break habits of doing everything private/in silos and start thinking "what is the broadest and most appropriate audience that should have visibility to this".  Until we start thinking like this, we will never really see the full benefits of Working Out Loud.




Dennis touched on all of the benefits of working out loud from individual to organization benefits.  One story that really stuck was his example of an organizational benefit that occurred at Lexmark.  One of their customers had a an issue with a printer.  Once they learned of this, the sales rep reached out to tech support, who forwarded it to engineering and so on as no one had the answer.  With the use of Jive they put this 'issue' into the community.  After doing this, they had 24 posts by 11 people, participation from HW, SW, Service, Tech Support, Operations, Sales (since no one person had the answer) and were able to get to a solution through the contributions of 8 different people.  WAY TO GO!!!  Not only this, but it also sparked up conversations on how to improve processes to help avoid this type of issue from happening again.




At the end of the session John Stepper (Managing Director at Deutsche Bank) took over the stage. John opened up with a quote that really stood out to me and shaped his presentation "It's a human process first and a technological one second."  He explained that building relationships with the aide of technology to do this will help you further what you are doing. 




John shared some great information such as the 5 elements needed to be successful at working out loud, which are: purpose, relationships, generosity, visible work and learning



Also, when starting to work out loud you need to be asking 3 questions:

  1. What goal do I have?
  2. Who can help me with that goal?
  3. What do I have to contribute to those people?


If you want to learn more on Working Out Loud Circles, John has a book coming out (due in February) titled Working Out Loud which is a how-to book on why working out loud works, stories, and 12 weeks of exercises to help you become better at working out loud.  You can also learn more on working out loud at John Stepper's Blog - Working Out Loud!!


Cannot wait for more great sessions this week, but this one definitely was memorable and gave me some great insights I am looking forward to bringing back to my team!  Thanks everyone!!


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