A community of practice consists of an organized group of people who meet periodically to learn about common areas of knowledge and interests.
What is a Community of practice?
A Community of Practice is an open space for collaborative learning to share knowledge and experiences on an ongoing basis. Communities become a form of social education that fosters transversality, collaboration, knowledge sharing and innovation among people with a specific interest.
Why are communities of practice important?
Today’s world is complex, uncertain, volatile and sometimes ambiguous (or VUCA). In such a world it is possible and even expected to make mistakes, but what would be unforgivable is to not learn from those mistakes
Learning involves many ingredients in varying amounts, such as theoretical knowledge, the trials and tests we do, the creation and confirmation of our own experience, and being able to access the experience of others with us. The old models of master and apprentice, of common knowledge within guilds, of sharing experiences, are still there, although they have been changing in form and scope.
The two types of communities of practice
Promoted by the organizations
Promoted by the organization for a specific purpose. They require greater dedication to manage them and sustain their operation.
They are an excellent way to manage and channel the organization's internal knowledge.
They are a stimulus for the people who participate, increasing their commitment and motivation.
They promote continuous training and make it easier for professionals to take responsibility for their development.
They promote a culture of learning, innovation, collaboration and continuous improvement in the organization.
Foster the building of personal relationships among participants, improving collaboration and a sense of belonging to the organization.
Promoted by the participants
They are managed by their participants, have more benefits but need a consolidated community culture in the organization.
They allow sharing experiences and knowledge with peers with similar profiles and interests.
They help to solve doubts and concrete problems of your day to day life.
They facilitate access to explicit and non-explicit knowledge about their professional activity.
Promote personal relationships in the workplace, generating emotional security.
How to create a Community of practice
The best way to make the communities a success is to count on the organization’s impulse and the support of people who apply their experience when designing them, defining their operations and promoting their knowledge and use by all the people within the organization.
In this way, it is possible to start with very simple modalities to progressively enrich their variety and offer valuable results to the organization.
At Netmind we provide experience in helping all types of organizations to define, implement and sustain their own communities of practice. We analyze the context and needs and make a customized recommendation on the most appropriate modalities and roadmap for evolution. We prepare and assist the people who will be in charge of launching and promoting them, and we provide them with content until they become self-sustaining and autonomous.