Before Carpool, I worked at Microsoft as the owner of internal social enterprise programs for their global employees since 2007, where I owned Microsoft's own internal Yammer network from 2012-2016. I'm a Microsoft MVP for Office Servers and Services, having presented at Microsoft-sponsored conferences from 2013-2015 and in strategic executive briefings for Fortune 50 companies. Always found in projects that improve people and their relationships through technology, I've worked on everything from employee recognition to e-learning platforms. I live near Seattle and enjoy hiking in the beautiful Northwest and vacationing in my wife's native Scotland (see pic in the header).
Thoughts & Philosophy
Driving adoption of new ways of working and illuminating the value derived from that transformation is exciting and challenging for me, but it's not the core reason that I do this. I believe that by working in new ways, and by putting the human component first in all along the journey, we can improve not just our time "at work" but our time with our friends, families, and communities. More flexibility in how and where we work, and more efficiency in our collaboration isn't just about better business results--it's about stronger connections to all the people in our lives.
One communications team is now relying on Carpool to bring their SharePoint infrastructure into a stable state, while gradually adopting the latest modern communication features available in Office 365 (e.g. Communication sites, Microsoft Teams, and Groups) in a way that minimizes business disruption during a significant restructuring of the organization. Our multi-phased approach will simplify permissions management, increase the efficiency of spinning up new web sites, and embrace more video-based content.
The communications team for a global brand contracted with Carpool for long term oversight of their ecosystem. The team had invested in new platforms and now needed to show real impact, as they were situated in a highly data-driven culture. As a standard part of our projects, we are typically thinking about demonstrating impact long before the first web site or social post is live. In this case, we had put in place regular research interview rhythms and a single Power BI dashboard that tracked email, web, and social channels in one centralized view. All this data helped us see and adjust to trouble spots in our flow, our content, and our influencers. For this client, the platforms were fine, but the message wasn’t sufficiently engaging. We defined a new content strategy that aligned with both their audience needs and business priorities. See our blog series on data-driven communications for more on the thinking behind this important foundation of our work.
Sometimes, our implementation looks less like building technology, and more like building people. A consultancy engaged us not to train their people on social tools--they were already active and proficient--but to coach their teams on using those tools for greater business impact. While a core set of practitioners were comfortable sharing their actual work in internal forums, most were only sharing industry news and friendly kudos. We embarked on a series of coaching sessions with work teams, showing them how to use their tools just a little differently in order to meet the company's goal of "working out loud" without decreasing their delivery efficiency.