Many years back when the CRM Web Client UI was a new product, and many if not all of us did not know how to effectively create extensions for the product, I got this great idea of creating a FAQ section in the SCN Wiki. As a result of this effort it became a larger project to grow a new CRM wiki base of information that hopefully people would find useful. Much time has passed and SCN has moved to a new platform that provides some new ways to share, collect and organize content. As a result I thought it would be a good time to revisit the whole wiki FAQ concept and see if there is a way to do it better.
I’m going to admit the reason why I’m looking at this now is personally motivated. I have taken a year-off from super-active participation on SCN in order to write a book, run a half marathon and lose some weight. Amazingly I accomplished all three, although some of the weight has come back(well goals can’t be perfect), but my goal was always to come back to the community in some fashion. Once I was finished with the book(the weight loss is ongoing and I signed up for another 1/2 marathon), I knew personally the way I would need to particpate in the community would need to change. Although I retained my moderator status, I don’t plan on being a “regular full-time enforcer”, however I’m not going to ignore things that are blantantly against the rules of engagement. Instead my moderator focus will be on helping this community curate and develop great quality content that will help us all solve our problems in a better fashion.
How should this work?
Let’s face it when you come to SCN to look for information or ask a question your goal is to solve your problem. My goal will be to figure out ways to mine/find information so that it is easier to find and elevate the level of discussion to the really hard questions. The goal is that for those of you new to the solution or haven’t done something before, you find some resources that can be used before asking your question. This will allow you to focus your question on applying the knowledge rather than learing the basics. A prime example was a recent question on how to create a dropdown in the Web Client UI, that’s the type of question that has been asked/documented several times. It’s not that we can’t talk about those issues, but the focus should be less on the mechanics but how to apply those mechanics.
How will this work?
The concept is quite simple and there are two options if you choose to participate
- Pay it forward through documents
- Pay it forward by “popping some tags”
If you choose to pay it forward through documents, then all you need to do is when you receive a useful solution, you should create a “document” and not a blog on the solution you received. The document should be a summary of the work necessary to solve the problem and should contain code snippets etc. Then when you are finished with it you should tag the document with crmpif for now. Later down the road a master document organizing submissions by topic will be created.
For the “popping some tags” method when you receive an answer to a discussion and you would like it documented, then please add the tag crmpif to the discussion. Myself any who wishes to join will make at least a weekly sweep of pay it forward content and try to convert at least one or two discussions into useful discussions. During the conversion process we will attribute both the person posting the question and who solved the problem. My goal in doing this is that we will provide an easy way for you to contribute content without needing to do all the work of formatting and bringing to others attention.
Quality over Quantity!
I just want to say when we start this up my target goal is one or two discussions converted to documents a week and that will be a success. The reason for such a low volume, is that I want impact over sheer numbers. The problem is we have way too much information so my goal is to expose those critical pieces of information buried under a pile of noise. Ideally if every active member of CRM community made one contribution to this project this year by either tagging or creating a document that would be a success. I have always been vocal advocate that each one of us sharing one small contribution when combined together is much better than one of us sharing everything.
What’s the benefit to me?
Borrowing from Pedro: “Pay it Forward and all your wildest dreams will come true”. Maybe not, but I think if you do participate you will help build an even better knowledge base than what was before. For those looking for more formal rewards and recognition, all I can say is let those follow you instead of seeking those out. You never know when random acts of kindness might follow your deeds 😉 .
Great when do we start?
Now! As content is created and tag, keep watching for another blog that talks about how things will be organized and progress so far. If you have questions or feedback leave them in the comments below.