Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Supernodes Drive Wiki Adoption

Eastwick client Ross Mayfield (CEO, Socialtext) links to a great primer on wiki adoption. The author is Suw Charman, who has been working with Socialtext onsite at Dresdner Klienwort Wasserstein, home of one of the largest (if not the largest) corporate wiki. We like Suw's observation that a top-down strategy alone will not drive wiki adoption (that's been our experience at Eastwick). Behold the "supernode," one of the key drivers of wiki adoption:

2. Identify and understand key users Once you have identified key user groups, you need to know which users within that group are both influential and likely to be enthusiastic. Then consider how social software fits in to the context of their job, their daily working processes and the wider context of their group's goals.

What specific problems does social software solve?

What are the benefits for this person?

How can the software be simply integrated into their existing working processes?
How does social software lower their work load, or the cognitive load associated with doing specific tasks?

Ideally, key users will be 'supernodes' - highly connected, in contact with a lot of people on a daily basis, and heavily involved with the function of their department and the transfer of information within the group and between groups. This may not be the group executive, but could well be his PA or a direct report. Frequently, people's supernode status is not reflected by official hierarchy.

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