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HOT SPOTS NEWSLETTER: is there an I in team?

At the Hot Spots Movement, we concentrate on the development of teams and cross-company collaboration. But we have an interesting conundrum – something of the chicken and the egg. Can you teach collaboration? And, can you build successful teams if individuals don’t have the internal capacity to embrace collaborative processes? Or do individuals develop those skills by working in teams? Let us have your thoughts!

We really do enjoy hearing from members of the Hot Spots Movement, and urge you to keep us updated with developments in your company, and ideas you have – we’d love to discuss them in a future edition of the newsletter!

Is there an I in team after all?

Just over a year since Glow was launched, Lynda’s most recent book is now available in local language versions in India, Spain and Latin America. We received the following message from Morris Oosterling, who has just finished reading it: “While reading "Glow" I was intrigued by the positive concepts of work. It changed my view on my working life and stimulated me to have fun, find and build lasting relationships with others and it helped me to inspire others. Thanks for enriching my life.”

This brings up an interesting issue: companies can’t build teams in their organisations if individuals aren’t open to collaboration. Glow sets out a clear methodology for individuals to develop their own skills at building networks and communities to help themselves; if more of us were able to tap into our skills of relationship building, it would help build clusters of innovation in a corporate environment.

This got us thinking: which should come first? Building personal skills in this area, or building team capacity? Maybe there is an ‘I’ in team after all? We would be interested to hear your thoughts – email Tina and we’ll print the best ideas in a future newsletter.

Future of Work goes public with series of webinars

The first phase of the Future of Work Research Consortium is now over, and Lynda is sharing the results in a series of four webinars over the next nine months. This is the first time the results of the research will be available in the public arena – fittingly, on an online platform first.

This means that cutting-edge research on business practices will be available to as wide an audience as possible. Lynda explained: “Globalisation through technology and the bridging of communities through online tools are some of the areas we focused on in the Future of Work. So, it was the natural step for us to make use of the power of the web to share the results of six months’ collaborative work across 20 countries.”

The first webinar will be on July 22 (though it can be viewed on demand if you prefer) on understanding the forces that shape the way we work. You can read more here.

Behind the scenes at the Future of Work portal

The online community portal is the lynchpin of the Future of Work Research Consortium. We now have a vibrant, interactive community of 250 individuals from 20 countries, bringing together the worlds of research and practice.

What went into the creation of the portal? Some of the Hot Spots team members discussed the methodology with the portal creators, Prewise, and you can read how they used technology to facilitate real-time discussions across corporate and geographic boundaries. Click here to read more.

COMMUNITY EXCLUSIVE: The results of phase one of the Hot Spots project
with Singapore Ministry of Manpower

For the last two years, we have been working closely with the Singapore Ministry of Manpower (MOM) to bring about rapid improvement in the performance of teams in Singapore. This project was tremendously successful, with 78 per cent of participating teams achieving increased or significantly increased performance, value creation, and innovative capability in the eyes of their key stakeholders.

As we prepare for phase two of this initiative, we wanted to share the results of phase one with the Community. You can read the executive summary here.

MOM is sponsoring an additional 30 teams to participate in the Hot Spots Programme: if your company has team members or an office based in Singapore, you could qualify for sponsorship. Email Heidi for details.

EXCLUSIVE: Insights into the Singapore government’s support of developing teamwork and collaboration

Staying on the subject of Singapore, we spoke to Low Peck Kem, Director, National Human Resources Division of MOM, as to why Singapore has invested so much in the development of teams. We asked: “What factors are seen as crucial for the development of Singapore’s human capital?

She replied: “Singapore has no natural resources – only a strategic location at the heart of Asia and our human capital. Hence, we pay much attention to developing Singapore’s human capital through a three-prong approach: building our local human capital, augmenting our local human capital with global talent, and building Singapore into a global city to live, work, learn and play in.

“As a new Asia rises, the region’s talent needs will rise significantly. The development of Singapore’s human capital will become even more important to our competitiveness, so we are constantly searching for new ideas to strengthen our advantage in this area.”

To read more of our exclusive interview, click here.

Social media: update on the Hot Spots case study

Strategist Noa Gafni, who is working with the Hot Spots Movement to enhance our online presence, gives us a status report on the last few months’ activity, as we use ourselves as a social media case study.

“Social media at the Hot Spots Movement continues to move forward. On Twitter, Lynda is now featured on 56 lists. Looking more broadly, it means that one of every 13 of Lynda’s followers has segmented her content into categories such as Thought Leadership, Strategy, and Management. We are also seeing the growth of the Facebook page, have set up a LinkedIn group, and opened a “light” version of the Future of Work portal to the public.

“Looking ahead, our focus will now move from engaging individual users with our brand to enabling users to discuss innovation, learning, the future of work, and other topics with one another. We will enable and facilitate collaboration and active discussion. Additionally, we are looking into the opportunities that emerging technologies, such as the iPad, present.”

Summer reading

Many of you are planning our holidays at the moment, and if you’re like us at the Hot Spots Movement, you will spend as much time considering what books to take on holiday as anything else! As we mentioned in the last newsletter, Lynda is on the judging panel for the FT and Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year 2010.

We asked Hot Spots Community members what their recommendations were: Ian Harris, from University of Cambridge International Examinations, recommends Switch. He emailed: “Take a look at Switch: How to Change Things When Changing Things is Hard, by Chip and Dan Heath. It's a very readable and accessible book about change.”

What is your choice for business book of the year? Email Tina – we’ll let you know the most popular books in a future newsletter.

Developing networks: who’s in our network?

Lynda has just come back from Norway, where she spoke at InnoTown, a really unusual business conference founded by Cecilie With and Dag Lausund. The conference is designed to inspire and enhance creativity and innovation, both through rational and emotional challenges. She has already vowed to return next June!

Here are some of her thoughts over the experience: “You know how much I believe in the potential creative power of diversity and this had it in spades. Imagine an event that put together me, Jung Chang, the author of Wild Swans, with Chris Bangle, the Chief Designer of BMW until 2009, and Blake Mycoskie, the Chief Shoe Giver of TOMS Shoes. Spin that with incredibly clear Nordic air, skies that remain light through the night, and an extraordinary troupe of artists –and you can see that this is no ordinary corporate conference.

Blog watch – community sites we like

There are such fascinating ideas coming out of India at the moment: we have spoken before about innovation in companies like Tata – which Lynda covered in Glow – and one of the most interesting online magazines in India is The Smart Manager. The articles are across areas as diverse as banking & finance, IT, media and retail, and basic membership is free.

Secondly, there is a really interesting movement set up by Traci Fenton called WorldBlu, which is championing the growth of democratic organisations. One of their most interesting tenets is that we should all work in full Technicolour, not in shades of grey. Have a look at their list of the world’s most democratic workplaces here.

Hot Spots in the media

Lynda was interviewed for a really interesting article on virtual networks in Aalto University’s magazine, which you can read here.

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