I’ve been working on getting together some videos for some time now. I started working on my video studio in late 2008. I took one run at getting some materials together for Governance together for 2007 but ultimately ran out of time before I could get them done. You see, I’m committed to making video materials the best quality possible. I enjoy video production and I want to leave no question in the mind of the viewer that the video content I create is the best possible content. That has led me to all sorts of crazy lengths to get it right. For instance, I had a custom teleprompter built. I built processes for bringing in PowerPoint slides. I’ve fine tuned the green screen, cameras, and audio. I got to the point where I’m comfortable with the production quality and then it was time to determine what to deliver.
Last time around I started with governance because at the time no one was really talking about governance and there was a ton of information that the market needed to get better at governing (steering) projects. While I still believe that this is an increadible need in the market – not because of the lack of information but rather because of the lack of credible information, I decided that I’d start by talking about adoption and engagement. I expect that I’ll be doing future discs on governance very shortly. The 2007 materials had over 1,200 nodes of information and over 250 slides when I had to set it aside – so once updated there are hours of content about how to get SharePoint governance right.
The need to start with a different topic lead me to the realization that I needed to create a series of videos which are designed to deliver the highest possible content to folks – content that people could trust. It also created the realization that I can’t create all of the material that folks need. I realized that there are topics where I won’t have time to get the DVD’s content together. There are places where I’m just not an expert. So I’ve asked some trusted friends and colleagues to deliver some special topics so that I can get more high-quality content out. I’ve got commitments from Eric Shupps for a Performance session. David Mann’s agreed to do a Workflow session. Matt McDermott has agreed to do one on Search. Todd Baginski will be doing one on Business Connectivity Services. While we don’t have locked timelines on these, I’m excited about the fact that the guys respect what I’m doing enough to be a part of it.
For the first DVD in the series, I decided to start with the adoption problem that too many organizations face. I talk to organizations all the time which face problems getting users to use the platform they’ve delivered and they don’t understand why. I had been speaking about engagement for a long time. Back in August of 2008 my Whitepaper for Microsoft “Increasing Your SharePoint Engagement” was released. Since then I’ve done dozens of presentations on the topic and yet the market hasn’t realized that we’re not shooting for adoption – adoption is the broader effect of some good engagement. That is some solution creation on the platform. Despite these conversations, presentations, and work with clients I wanted to make sure that I was absolutely clear in my conversations and to make sure that I could explain why the things I was suggesting would work and what folks would need to do to ensure that they’d work in their environment so I decided to do some additional research and reading to clarify and support my message. That led to a ton of reading including:
- Drive, Daniel Pink (Review, Amazon)
- Leading Change, John Kotter (Review, Amazon)
- User Adoption Strategies, Michael Sampson (Amazon)
- 365 Ways to Motivate and Reward Your Employees with Little or No Money, Dianna Podmoroff (Review, Amazon)
- 42 Rules of Employeee Engagement, Susan Stamm (Review, Amazon)
- Building Trust: In Business, Politics, Relationships and Life, Fernando Flores and Robert Solomon (Review, Amazon)
- Trust & Betrayal in the Workspace, Dennis and Michelle Reina (Review, Amazon)
To that we have to add the books that I had already read and integrated into my work. I decided to review my notes and make sure I wasn’t missing anything. Here’s that list of books I went back through:
- Peopleware, Tom Demarco and Timothy Lister (Review, Amazon)
- Outliers, Malcom Gladwell (Review, Amazon)
- Blink, Malcom Gladwell (Review, Amazon)
- The Tipping Point, Malcom Gladwell (Review, Amazon)
- The Time Paradox, Phillip Zimbardo and John Boyd (Review, Amazon)
- Wikinomics: How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything, Don Tapscott and Anthony Williams (Review, Amazon)
The end result of all of this hard work was 2 hours and 21 minutes of what the reviewers have called “information dense” and “content heavy.” The content ships as a single DVD that is playable on a standard DVD player. The target was nominally 3 hours. I think I did pretty good for hitting targets without an audience to interact with. The one criticism that I’ve gotten is that while the content is absolutely the right content, it’s not the “how to” that folks expected since that’s all the Shepherd’s Guide for End Users was. In order to address that concern, I’ll be following up the Psychology of SharePoint Adoption and Engagement DVD with a “How to do SharePoint Adoption and Engagement” DVD in the next few months. I’ll give you a “bag of tricks” to use when implementing the knowledge you’ll gain from the Psychology DVD.
The DVDs will be available from the SharePointShepherd.com web site as well as through Amazon.com. The price for the “Psychology of SharePoint Adoption and Engagement” is $299.99. Until October 31, 2011 I’ll be offering the DVD at a special discounted $249.99 price on the SharePoint Shepherd site.