Archive | March 2017

Government department shares and records emotions!

A Permanent Secretary ensured it was okay to blog during working hours. The blog gave staff of a major Government department the chance to express forcibly their views on practice and performance and the Permanent Secretary recognised their strength of feeling. People changed performance and boundaries, thus generating further changes in the organisation.

In a blog people can express and record feelings, to persuade readers. But restrained Government departments rarely share emotions let alone record them. The Permanent Secretary highlighted and discussed which staff suggestions he could act on. In a posting that sought to ensure that staff participated in the blog responsibly, he enjoined: “…don’t throw rocks from the side-lines” reflecting that he did not want users to view themselves as bystanders or outsiders, but he viewed, and wished them to view the blog as a means of performing shared views of the organisation and generating means of improving it. He bestowed legitimacy on the organisation’s blog.

You can use a blog as an important boundary object to challenge power and convention inside a group.

In our paper, “Don’t throw rocks from the side lines” we consider the dynamic nature of blogs, and the role of power and emotion in sociomaterial based studies. You can contact us, the authors, through this Open Resources Online link.

Group writing week

Writing together encourages the limping writer. Ten of us on the Police Knowledge Fund project spent time away to write about our research.  We set targets for each day, identified publications and decided who would be lead writer on each paper and we have shared areas on Dropbox where we’re placing our papers.

Such a writing session is useful for focusing thoughts. One target was to write the abstract for a paper, which means you need to know what your research question was, and that you have the data to address it. That at the end of the week we have five partly written papers in our Dropbox suggests at least a modicum of success. Now  we have to complete each paper and get it published.