ICT-KM of the CGIAR

Collaborate, Create, Communicate

Part 1: Need to do a back-to-office report? Why not blog it?

So like many of you out there reading these blog posts, I often travel and attend meetings and workshops, and need to document and share what happened and what I did for my Institute/Program on my return.

The usual format is a back-to-office report written in Word, with a fairly generic format—right?

It is usually done on return when most ideas are no longer fresh in the mind and the pressures of being back in your office are more than distracting—sound familiar?

After some painstaking hours of writing the report it is emailed to or printed out for supervisors who are also very busy and already bombarded with numerous emails and reports— am I getting warmer?

But the workshop was innovative and fun; you met lots of interesting people; you lay awake each night with your head brimming with new ideas; you were exposed to new information, tools and resources (mostly online- as they almost always are these days)– and somehow this just doesn’t get translated well into the usual back-to-office-report. I think I have hit the nail on the head now!So why not do something interesting, innovative and useful (and possibly even fun) for documenting and sharing all that?

Write  blog as your back to office report!

Why 2 blog?

  • It can be a more creative and less daunting way to capture and share your experiences and ideas
  • It can be a useful way to store and save such ‘reports’ and also make them available for others to read and learn from
  • You can make it more rich through linking to websites, articles, presentations, photos, audio/video clips and other resources
  • You can easily do a joint blog ‘report’ with others who attended the trip, workshop or event as well
  • It can be more interactive and help to elicit feedback from others

How 2 blog?

  • Start writing it as you go through the trip, workshop or event you are attending. As something strikes you, add it to your draft post. This way it can add building blocks along the way, and you just add the roof and do the landscaping when you get home and have some time to reflect.
  • Add quotations, links, and photos to enrich the experience of the readers of your blog. Let them have a greater sense of what it was like and how you experienced it.
  • Ask to blog on your institute’s main blog or set one up for yourself, your team or for back-to-office blogs for everyone in the institute
  • Share the link with co-workers as well as other participants on the trop or at the event to get feedback on what you did, achieved and shared.
  • Make sure you properly tag your blog post so that it can be found with other back-to-office reports easily, or with other posts related to the theme

More information and tips on blogging check out some other blog posts about blogging and also the KS Toolkit page on blogs

And watch out for Part 2 of this blog-where I  practice back-to-office blogging!

Photo credit: Image of stack of reports http://departmentreport.com/business_report.html 

Photo credit: Image of ‘blog spelt out on keyboard keys’ http://blog-en.tamtamy.com/page/2/