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Case Study: Use of Social Media to “Crowd Source” Series of Articles

Andy Krzmarzick , a Senior Project Coordinator at the Graduate School and Executive Board member of Young Government Leaders, wanted to tap into the multi-sector, multi-generational, governmental community to collaborate on a series of articles for The Public Manager magazine. The suggested articles would cover a variety of the issues surrounding telework, including green government, recruitment and retention issues, and performance-based environments.
Below is the introduction that appears on Andy’s blog explaining the project.
Blog Website: http://yglpublicmanager.pbworks.com/
Like a science laboratory, we will use this Web-based space to incubate and inspire articles and ideas for future publications of The Public Manager magazine. Rather than using a traditional method of crafting drafts and edits, we will all contribute to the production, review and revision of the articles in real-time right here. It will be open, transparent and participatory – aspects of government promoted by the new Administration. Our hope is that this common space will speed up the process of preparing new articles and bring out the best from each author. Again, welcome and let’s get started! By the way, if you have never worked in a wiki environment, please watch this video:
CURRENT PROJECT: “The Future Fed and Flexible Work Environments”
Background: A couple months ago, Public Manager Editor-In-Chief (Warren Master) and Andy were kicking around the idea to dedicate a portion of an issue to flexible work environments. To make this issue a bit different from other attempts to talk about telework, the key ingredient was you: government personnel who are young in their service or fresh in their perspective. In order to demonstrate the power of collaborative technology (aka “social media” or “Web 2.0”) to enable the completion of remote projects, we elected to stage the writing on this brand new wiki (aka the “Writing Lab”). We intend to cover a variety of topics related to telework and flexible work environments, as listed below.

Instructions: Please review the topics in the table below. If you have an interest or level of expertise related to one or more topics, please place your name under “Author(s).” Hopefully, each article will have more than one author, so sign up to serve as co-author (up to three). Each topic is also a link, which you may hit to access the article page. If it’s blank, that means we need someone to start writing on that topic. If it already has some verbiage, one of your colleagues has started contributing to that particular article. Feel free to initiate authorship or edit existing material. If you do not feel inspired to write anything, but have questions or ideas, please add those directly into the document. Preferably, you will made any suggestions in another color – like red – or use the highlighting function to make it easier to find. If you don’t see a topic that you’d like to cover, go ahead and add it…and start writing
NOTE 1: If you’re comfortable with sharing your contact information, please do so here.
NOTE 2: For the “Vignettes,” we are hoping to have several of them. Just be sure to stick to the stated limit of 500-600 words.
NOTE 3: Don’t forget to Save! If in doubt, hit Save!
NOTE 4: If you get lost in the wiki, always look to the upper right and hit FrontPage.
Table: Potential topics are provided below. Again, add and edit as you see fit. This is an iterative, crowd-driven project.
Continuity of Operations (COOP)
Cindy Auten
Cross-Agency Teamwork

Customer Service Functions

Green Government

Jobs Classification (Making Telework-Friendly)
Cindy Auten
Megan Coffey
Multi-Sector Management

Performance-Based Environments

Recruitment and Retention of Multi-Generational Workforce
Andrew Krzmarzick & Cindy Auten
Technology and Social Media as Enablers
Andrew Krzmarzick
Telework Centers – Opportunities and Challenges

Training to Prepare and Promote Success
Andrew Krzmarzick
Unlikely Candidates – Out of the Box, Out of the Office

Vignetes from Teleworking Personnel (600-word max)

[Add yours here…or right click and insert row to add in alpha order]

For More Information: If you have any questions about this process or PBWiki, please contact [email protected] or catch me on Twitter: @krazykriz.
• Andy has sent invitations via GovLoop, Twitter and personal email to scores of potential contributors, yet has only 4 contributors so far. How do we elicit more writers from a cross-section of government?
• We now have approximately six weeks until a conference at which the results of the project may be presented as a case study. How do we ensure project completion with opportunities for review by the Editor and other key stakeholders?
• He has also received questions on whether contributors can identify themselves as government employees and mention their agency.
• Some of his potential contributors have told him they would love to participate but “really don’t get this web 2.0 thing.” He has posted an instructional video but there still seems to be reluctance in using the wiki.
Group Discussion: Are there other challenges you would anticipate? What do you think the top implementation considerations are?
Breakout Instructions

1. Select breakout based on the challenge you would most like to work on.
2. Brainstorm as a group on how to address the challenge
3. Pull up from the wiki site the recommendation template.
4. Document your recommendations for Andy.

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Sandra Fernandez

In my organization, wikis are one of the most obscure collaborative tools available. If your target writers/contributors aren’t already heavy wiki users, then this becomes a stumbling block. It’s not as easy as posting a comment or a series of comments or sending in a quick email as a response.

Wayne Moore

Search blogs on govloop for subject matter where their might be information. I noticed on twitter that you only have 7 friends and 20 followers. Try making friends and following govloop, gov20camp, levyj413, socialmediacamp and timoreilly to name a few. They have large followings and may re-tweet you information.

tracy haugen


thanks a ton for your participation and flexibility. Looking forward to future collaboration (I may try to contribute to an article). Take care