Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Strategic Planning & Encouraging Change

my raw notes from the AM session:

Strategic Planning & Encouraging Change
Michael Edson, Director of Web & New Media Strategy, Office of the CIO, Smithsonian Institution
(See many of the resources referred to here at their wiki on wikispaces - e.g.,

Showed walk-through of paper-based prototype use
Last year, talked about concept of a Smithsonian Commons
Have been planning & prototyping
The concept is to offer up the amazing resources of the Smithsonian in ways that others can freely and easily reuse and deploy in their own blogs, mashups, websites, wikis, whatever... giving the information consumer freedom in how they consume what the Smithsonian offers & to build on it, to build community, etc.

the preso at Slideshare - http://www.slideshare.net/edsonm

Strategic plan
Larger new 5-year strategic plan in Smithsonian

"earning new relevance" for Smithsonian - "work that matters"

concept of "thermocline" used as a way of understanding the issues

deep conflicts in workplace about the changes that are needed & the need for constant change
also, the concept of "free"
older generation (largely) thinks that giving things away is ridiculous,
younger generation (on the whole) thinks free is an obvious business model

- complacency
- urgency
John Kotter, A Sense of Urgency (more on the Kotter books at http://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/5938.html) is required - the 30% of new initiatives that succeed are driven by a sense of urgency
museums now feel that they must accomplish real work in society
accelerated knowledge creation & social change
in old days, used to have to be the best you could be as the given organization
nowadays, MOST innovation occurs outside the walls of a Smithsonian

think big, start small, move fast

Mobile users are changing everything

Myth about the relevance, reach, and impact of orgs like museums & libraries

Smithsonian 2.0 Conference
Workshops to Wiki - Web & New Media process
open up process to as many people as possible
overcome orgs' innate tendency to slow things down
smithsonian-webstrategy.wikispaces.com - public wiki
people felt their words were heard because appeared on wiki
wiki became the strategy
one of the reasons strategies fail is that cononical version held statically in one location, rather than on tool like a wiki

Gov2.0 conference - driving change with transparency

- update Smithsonian Digital Experience
- update Learning Model
- balance of autonomy & control (help edge innovators in indiv. Smithsonian museums to innovate)

pain points & opportunities

Smithsonian Commons
more valuable if freely shared than if restricted

wrote experience brief w/4 users - flow of story, what problems are encountered, what they are trying to do - up on Scribd
looked at Flickr stream to see how Smithsonian is used/views by people - used in the experience briefs

let Smithsonian info be mashed up outside of institution

"amateur curators" allowed on Smithsonian commons - reusable data for others' sites, API for others to use Smithsonian assets as desired.
Biggest challenge = overcoming inertia

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