I love that I work in an office where blogging is a part of the work. IMO too much attention is paid to how blogging can hurt your career, and not enough to how blogging can enhance your effectiveness and efficiency on the job.
The Global Kid’s Online Leadership Program website is really just a super-charged group blog with various categories representing different areas of our work. One notable section is "staff reflections" in which all of the staff comment on their work or general thinking around issues that they are confronting. In fact, we are required to blog as part of our work. It’s a great way to get a sense of how we are approaching our various projects and what questions and problems we are encountering along the way.
For example: a quick perusal of the staff reflections shows that Rafi is thinking about "Heroes," Leslie-Ann has been pondering how HIV/AIDS has touched her life, Tabitha is wondering what to do when technology fails, and Barry is considering what lessons are learned from gaming the system. Neat stuff!
As a blogger and non-profit professional, I have often thought about how blogging could fit into my overall work flow, as opposed to a break from work.
I’ve been doing this kind of non-profit work quite a bit longer than most people in my program. I think of when I came to New York 14 years ago, ready to take the United Nations by storm as a young activist. Back then, I was making $500 a month as the assistant to the executive director at the World Federalist Movement, a 60 year old peace and justice organization. We operated on a shoestring budget in a tiny little office across the street from the UN, closely following various negotiations on peace, the environment, human rights and institutional reform issues.
Those were heady, crazy times where we put in long hours for little pay just because this kind of close monitoring of the United Nations HAD to be done, and we were the only ones around who seemed to be willing to do it. I remember those days quite fondly, but I don’t think I understood the import of what we were doing until many years later.
I regret that during that time that I wasn’t more carefully documenting my own thought processes, concerns and revelations while they were happening. And, as our office grew from a three-person staff to 15, I wish that we had systems in place for us to be communicating our worries, questions and small triumphs to each other more consistently.
Today I find myself in a similar place, working with a small team of dedicated young professionals doing ground-breaking virtual world / new media / global issues work. We’re on the frontier of e-learning and we don’t know what is coming on the horizon.
So I will be interested to see how these staff reflections impact the work that Global Kids OLP does — or not. And how this high level of transparency in "watching the sausage get made" affects how the larger public views us.