Wednesday, May 1, 2013

How to help others become digitally literate?

In my previous post I asked my readers how they help other’s understand the potential of new ways of working? How can we teach and show others what digital literacy is?

I wanted to share one idea I use to teach others to work out loud. What I always try to do is relate to the primary processes of the organization or, even better, to the primary work processes of the person I’m helping. He/she is working in a certain way and used to that. For instance, he uses email to send around documents and get feedback on them. Or he sends out an email to a group of people to get ideas about a certain topic. Starting there I ask that person what he/she likes about working that way. And what he/she dislikes about it. Then I ask how he/she thinks the dislikes could be solved. My experience is: most people don’t think they can be solved. They just cope with the issues and carry on. If this is the case, I show them how I do the same job with a certain tool. I tell them why I work in that way and why I like to work that way. And I stop there. In most cases they say: I didn’t know there were tools like that, could you help me get/use them as well? In some cases they continue to work they way the way. And that’s OK. I can’t force them to work in another way. I just hope they remember there is another way and try it some other time.