It's 5 a.m. in San Jose. I'm sharing a room at the Brandon Hall conference with Christine Martell, so our room is strewn with various Apple products, including her new 3G iPhone and both of our MacBooks.
Yesterday we did our pre-conference sessions. Janet Clarey and I ran an afternoon workshop on getting a jumpstart with social media where we showed people how to use the conference tags and wiki, Twitter, Delicious, RSS etc. Janet also gave them a quick tour of Second Life and the Brandon Hall offices there.
We had a mixed group--several from LMS vendors, others from large corporations like Intel. Faith Legendre who ran training for 1-800-FLOWERS and is one of the keynoters here, was in our session. We spent some time discussing the benefits of working from home, which she says has changed her life.
Most in our group had at least some exposure to Web 2.0 tools and were looking at how to integrate them into training for their staff. Wikis seemed to be most interesting to them, along with Delicious. Although most were reading blogs, none maintains one--lack of time seems to be the biggest factor. Several were using RSS, which was heartening to hear. For the session, I prepared several one-page guides to using social media (remixes of Tim Davies' great one-pagers). You can find and download them here.
The Women Bloggers Jam was an informal discussion with Cathy Moore, Emma King, Christine, Janet and I talking with several women who are just beginning to blog or are considering it. We talked about the usual things, like finding the time to write, how transparent we should be on our blogs, how to find your voice as a blogger. Of course the Kathy Sierra situation came up. It was something of a watershed incident for women bloggers, I think.
One women said that her boss was considering starting a blog and was wondering if she should start it under how own name/identity or her company's. The consensus seemed to be that she should start it for herself--that way she would own the content, be building her own personal online identity, etc. We also spent some time discussing why more women don't blog, especially professionally. No answers there, but some questions about whether or not we need more mentoring, etc.
Today looks good--Lisa Johnson and David Allen are keynoters and there are some interesting breakout sessions. I'm also working the Geek Squad, although feeling a little bit like the Mom on the Squad. I think the rest of the geeks are all in their 20s. More later. I'm hoping to liveblog, but we'll see how that goes.
(NOTE--we're taking a break from Web 2.0 Wednesday this week. I hope to be back with it next week)