Sunday Recap – 1/25/15

Sunday recap is a way for me to record items I came across the Web during the week.  It acts as a permanent home for things I want to explore more or reflect upon.  It was inspired by Harold Jarche’s PKM Mastery class I took in 2014.

Collaboration and Organizational Design

Organizational design has a huge impact on decision-making and collaboration, and both reflects, and often creates, the level of collaboration and autonomy with and amongst the workforce. Culture may eat strategy for lunch but decision-making, reporting and budgeting structures can either birth or strangle both culture and strategy with both hands tied behind its back.

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Sunday Recap

Sunday recap is a way for me to record items I came across the Web during the week.  It acts as a permanent home for things I want to explore more or reflect upon.  It was inspired by Harold Jarche’s PKM Mastery class I took in 2014.

Content Management/Knowledge Management

The best example of a CMS is the Web. There is relevant and irrelevant content. The relevant content is often found through referrals. This may be in terms of ratings, curation by a trusted party, or from a known source. Referrals can be pushed, through something like a subscription service, or pulled from knowledge networks when there is an immediate need for information. People with more diverse and deep knowledge networks get better information.

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Rolling 2 Weeks Solution

This solution walks through the steps to build a rolling 2 weeks view of a project task list, where you can always see what active tasks either start or come up due within 2 weeks from today’s date.  To build the solution, you need to make use of calculated columns and a new list view.  The solution is something a normal business user can implement using just the web browser. Continue reading

Fun with Calculated Columns

On a recent project, we were working on a solution using just out-of-the-box capabilities.  The accounting team of our customer wanted to track tasks involved with the monthly close, and have due dates auto-populate based on the month-end close date.  We utilized calculated columns and a list template to come up with a solution they could easily maintain.

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Working Out Loud

In honor of Working Out Loud Week, I wanted to share the resources I referenced on this topic in my presentation entitled, Finding Value in Enterprise Social Collaboration – How to identify the right opportunities for innovation at your company, from this year’s SharePoint TechFest in Dallas.

At their core, enterprise social collaboration technologies are about enabling human-human interaction using computers, employees interacting with each other using software  The software has no value unless users are using it, and the foundation for effective enterprise social collaboration is working out loud. Continue reading

The Business Case for Collaboration

In this blog post I wanted to explore the business case for collaboration, and the circumstances that have changed over the last 3-4 decades which make collaboration such an important vehicle for driving value for organizations.  I will reference several sources for this article and welcome any comments.  My goal is to explain concepts clearly so you can have better conversations within your organization. Continue reading

Dallas SharePoint TechFest

I am really excited to be presenting at the Dallas SharePoint TechFest coming up this Thursday, April 4, as well as being part of the keynote panel with Microsoft.  My session is entitled, “What’s your SharePoint Business Model?”  Here’s the overview:

In order to summarize how SharePoint adds (or will add) value to your company, you must be able to communicate that value in a way that makes sense to your executives and business users.  After this session, you will have the tools to easily speak their language and show how your company’s utilization of SharePoint can generate value.

In this session we will walk through building a business model for SharePoint to help you:

  • Easily explain your SharePoint deployment to executives and employees
  • Align key staff in order to determine goals and priorities
  • Depict cause-and-effect relationships
  • Show the links between day-to-day work and the services you offer
  • Easily explain what areas need improvement

My session aims to provide tools and techniques to help IT and the business work in concert with one another to drive value creation.

I will be writing a series of blog posts after the session that will provide more detail on why creating a business model for your SharePoint deployment is important, as well as how to go about doing it.

Interesting side note – the conference is doing a great job in providing the following value-adds for attendees:

  • Mobile App to get the entire conference schedule on your phone
  • Each session’s audio will be recorded and made available with the presentation
  • A Yammer site has been created to encourage conversation before, during and after the event

Should be lots of fun and a great learning opportunity for all involved.

A Wicked Problem Case Study

This blog posting will make more sense to you if you have a basic understanding of wicked problems.

On a recent client engagement we received a statement of work (from the IT department) to replace an existing proprietary system. This system was brought into the company via an acquisition of another organization several years ago.  It was a document management solution that housed only Adobe PDF files, and made custom web service calls to allow people to comment on PDFs within the browser and to sign off on their tasks. Over the years the application had become buggy (the web service calls would fail after Windows updates were run on workstations) and there was no internal knowledge to support the application anymore, which resulted in IT performing registry hacks on end user workstations so the application would work again. Continue reading

InfoPath: Auto Populate People Picker to Person Filling Out the Form


We want our InfoPath Form to pre-populate the People Picker field with the person filling out the form (example below).

People Picker Pre-Populated with User filling out the form

I was working with Tim Jones, co-worker of mine, on a project and he came up with this solution.  We wanted a way to accomplish this without any custom code or JavaScript, etc. We were utilizing InfoPath for customizing SharePoint 2010 list forms (which requires enterprise edition).  Here’s how we accomplished it:

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The Softer Side of SharePoint – What’s Your SharePoint Business Model?

When you look at utilizing SharePoint within an organization, there needs to be shared understanding around four questions, which will enable you to steer the usage of SharePoint to support the business and help drive value.

  • What is the future state you want to achieve and what does it look like?
  • Why did you choose that specific future state, as opposed to other options?
  • Who will do what to get you to that state?
  • How will you get to that state?

Running a SharePoint Deployment is Complicated

SharePoint provides unique challenges because the application can morph into something completely differently than you originally planned.  The application’s greatest strength – flexibility – is also its’ greatest challenge.  The following is taken from Lynn Warneke’s article on…

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