Author Archive


Its not about right or wrong..

Posted by  Mark Schenk —February 10, 2006
Filed in Business storytelling

We collected an anecdote and used it in a document, and the document came to the attention of senior management. We were advised that the anecdote was inaccurate in some of its specifics, that it presented an overly negative picture and that there was a logical reason why someone might behave in the way described […]

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All models are wrong…

Posted by  Mark Schenk —January 31, 2006
Filed in Communication

I am a regular reader of the AOK-Forum list hosted on Yahoo!  A recent post had links to a series of fascinating diagrams.  One of them had a list of features that one should consider in constructing a model and thus help us to make sense of the world.  George Box, the industrial statistician, is […]

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Disappearing Yahoo! groups

Posted by  Mark Schenk —January 25, 2006
Filed in Collaboration

My holiday at the beach last week was interrupted by the news that the actKM Forum discussion group, of which I am currently the Convenor, had disappeared off the Yahoo! Groups site.  As it turns out, on 15 January, a number of Yahoo groups related to Knowledge Management disappeared completely from Yahoo! without notice or […]

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Most Significant Change

Posted by  Mark Schenk —January 14, 2006
Filed in Business storytelling

Most Significant Change is a narrative-based evaluation technique that has been used extensively in program evaluation in social change applications.  Shawn and I had an enjoyable lunch today with Dr Jess Dart one of the originators of the technique and highly respected internationally in its application.  Visit the Clear Horizon website for details about MSC, including the free manual.  […]

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Narrative reveals values in action

Posted by  Mark Schenk —January 11, 2006
Filed in Business storytelling

During the course of 2005 we ran many narrative projects on a range of topics including project evaluation, occupational health and safety, trust, change management and culture change.  In each case one of the valuable outcomes was the exposure of the values in action in the organisation.  In several cases, the values in action were significantly […]

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Communities of practice – the right brain of the organisation?

Posted by  Mark Schenk —January 5, 2006
Filed in Collaboration

Happy New Year to everyone from the team at Anecdote.  We hope you are returning fresh and fully charged to take on 2006… I have been thinking about a metaphor that describes communities of practice as ‘the right brain of the organisation’.  As we know, the right and left brains are described as performing different […]

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Community of practice synonyms

Posted by  Mark Schenk —November 23, 2005
Filed in Collaboration

I have just returned from a conference in Sydney on Knowledge and Innovation.  I sat on a panel yesterday addressing the question “Communities of Practice: why do they work or fail?” One of the points I made was that communities of practice are often named something else, normally to adopt a title more suitable for […]

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Anecdote: Ready, aim, aim, aim

Posted by  Mark Schenk —October 25, 2005
Filed in Anecdotes

I was in Brisbane on Thursday and had a great opportunity to catch up with some friends.  One of them, Vince Aisthorpe, related an anecdote from Tom O’Toole who founded the Beechworth Bakery, one of the largest in the southern hemisphere.  The anecdote was about why many Government agencies don’t seem to get much done. “They […]

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The Importance of Content

Posted by  Mark Schenk —October 7, 2005
Filed in Insight

The topic at a meeting this morning was the design concept for a web-based ‘clearinghouse’.  I mentioned the risks of taking a ‘Field of Dreams’ approach – “if we build it they will come”, and the importance of having relevant content that users can easily find and use.  I also mentioned that having the best […]

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