“I knew them very well. That’s why it worked. Because we do work together.”
We take responsibility for our own learning, yet keenly aware of the value for learning of engaging with others. It is when we find ourselves alone or isolated that we may best perceive the value of connecting with others for learning.
One of the justifications for working in a silo is a very high level of specialization that requires being fully-focused on one’s own area of work – to the exclusion of others.
We form networks of informal learning and collaboration in our team, with other departments in the headquarters, with the field, and with people and organizations outside the organization.
Asking people is often faster than sifting through information.
Technology facilitates building and sustaining small networks of trusted colleagues, large formal working groups, and more anonymous forms (mailing lists, discussion forums, etc.) that keep us connected.
In our volatile working environment, what we know (usually thought of as content-based knowledge) is replaced with how we are connected to others. That is how we stay current and informed.
Networks are a powerful problem-solving resource that people naturally turn to when they need help. We rely on small, trusted networks to accelerate problem-solving (learning).
Photo: Door at base of silo (Astrid Westvang/flickr.com)