As recommended in the article, check out Yammer.
A number of us have been consistently using Yammer to post short updates on what we are working on, both to help us review our own work, as well as to let others know what we are working on. Posting regularly to Yammer (use the Desktop Application for easiest use) can really help colleagues get a handle on what is going on around them without spamming everyone with emails. I personally have found Yammer to be exceedingly helpful in building and maintaining strong working relationships with colleagues in other workgroups and buildings that I don’t see every day. I get a handle on what they are dealing with and know when not to interrupt their putting out of an important fire.
The great thing about Yammer and other Twitter-like systems is that — unlike email — they let the message recipients decide what messages they want to receive rather than putting that control in the hands of the sender. In Yammer, you can choose to receive all posts, or just those posted by the particular people or tags that you want to follow. In this way you can keep the updates to a manageable number and focused on the people or topics that interest you.
Give it a try!
I agree with Adam that yammer seems like an important way for us to stay informed about what is going on within LIS; right now there is not a critical mass of people using it, and so it turns into just another thing to check. It would be interesting to find out how many people would find this a useful channel to stay informed, and to keep others informed. How might we approach this? One thought is to try an experiment for a month where a substantial group of folks within LIS commit to using it. What do others think?
The one downside to yammer is its currently set up for all of middlebury, not just LIS. Adam is right that you can limit who you want to get updates from, but I don’t think you can limit who sees your updates and there are some things we don’t want to put out to the community in an unfiltered way. Also, It takes time to do updates, so unless you know its really being watched by everyone who should know something, you end up still using email to communicate to your target audience.
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