Early on we launched a series called Friday Features Feature and tagged it as #FFF in the platform. These 20-25min informal webinar events happened around lunch time where people could register in advance and set their calendars to attend. Very informal with a single objective highlighting the "how to" of a certain feature but with significant emphasis on the "why to." My Performance Specialist, Nona Gormley wondered aloud if we couldn't take this a step further, to make it even more convenient for our workforce as this has always been my battle cry: limited (learning) friction on the workflow. Her suggestion was to make it possible for anyone at anytime to reach out and have somebody walk through a feature or process. From this the idea of Open Office Hours was born.
Using a combination of Join.me and an internal conference line, I set up a 6 hour window where my screen was being shared (showing our ESN) and the conference line was open. No registration and 3 simple steps. Below is the invite.
From 9:00am to 3:00pm the lines were open. We had 3 callers/observers attend in our first effort with specific questions about settings and other features. In some cases the questions were beyond my understanding of the tool's capabilities but it led us to explore together, in the open. Humbling to some extent but I think it was also quite humanizing to the attendee, as it makes things a bit less intimidating when someone like me who has success with social tools reveals that he doesn't know it all. This took me back to the point I was making in my post Learning Through Inexperts, that learning with and through even those muddling about can be beneficial to build community understanding.
|By Snowded CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons|
An Open Office Hours approach is just that, and although only 3 took advantage this time, it's far from a failure and more likely something we will tweak and try again soon.