Introducing Wikipatterns.com

The biggest challenge you face after first deciding to use a wiki is getting all of your coworkers to use it too. Some organisations have been extremely effective at getting mass participation on their wikis, others not so much.

How did you get everyone in your community (company, department, or broader community) to use a wiki? Or maybe you haven’t, perhaps you’re still struggling with ways to get people to use the wiki.

We’ve been working hard on a brand new wiki-related project, and I’d like to invite you to participate. Wikipatterns.com is intended to give anyone, anywhere, using any wiki software, a list of strategies for successfully introducing a wiki to their organization.

The site is accessible now at Wikipatterns.com, and contains three major strands of content:

  • People patterns and anti-patterns
  • Adoption patterns and anti-patterns
  • A walk-through of the stages of wiki adoption

The patterns and anti-patterns on the site are loosely modeled on the concept of software design patterns — those recurring patterns of behaviour that can be recognized and channeled for the good of the team.

For instance, the Magnet pattern recognizes that putting certain content exclusively on the wiki will help people get into the habit of using it regularly. For example, posting all your meeting agendas and minutes on the wiki establishes it as the place for the most up to date information.

What has worked for you? I’d love to have your thoughts on this. So I invite you to look through the patterns, see which ones you may have used, and contribute examples, anecdotes, tips, or whatever else you think is important. I hope that you’ll also find useful patterns to use in your own wiki work, and will contribute ideas and feedback after you’ve tried using those patterns.

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