How To Develop And Share Best Practice Effectively

By | September 10, 2009

Most organisations now have some form of intranet, a place where documents and files are shared. Some organisations have realised the power of turning that system held data into a form that drives learning and builds/deepens organisational capability.

Let’s start with first principles. There are things your organisation does poorly, well enough and brilliantly. If you are a typical organisation the distribution of the number of times you might see those three standards will be shaped like a diamond. The majority of activities will be average, creating a bulge in the middle with the poorly and brilliantly stuff both being present but smaller in frequency. Imagine changing the distribution so creating a different shape – an inverted triangle, with brilliant activity at the top, being most common and average/ poor quality activity being rarest.

By following a conscious process of defining, capturing and disseminating activities that create value, and performed better than the industry standard, you will be driving the development of your own best practice.

However the problem quickly develops of how we maintain this best practice, making it available to others and easily updatable, with clear ownership and access rights. That’s where your IT can really start to work for you.

By building an on-line repository of best practice your organisation will have created the opportunity to accelerate the development of value added learning, knowledge that converts into real commercial advantage in increased profits.

Using industry standard, off the shelf software these on-line learning hubs can become the best practice centres of excellence.

Take for example a sales related learning hub. Our experience has shown us that most sales processes distil into 20-25 pieces of sales best practice. Imagine those 20 odd examples of how to do things codified into exemplars. Doing things this way we know to work more effectively than doing other ways. Each piece of best practice is owned by the person who is the current standard holder, who is available for coaching/helping others, until someone else improves on the practice so becomes the new owner.

All contained in a place securely accessible 24/7 by everyone, easily updatable and be enriched with supplementary material. Adding feedback mechanisms, forums, blogs tweets and wiki elements are all possible. And the usage data can be analysed in real time, making improvements a snap.

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