Why is this important? There are several reasons: first, you need a way to communicate your vision to the development team without misusing technical terminology; next, you very likely need to bring others on board to support your initiative. Helping them to understand the process is key to their buy-in.
Perhaps the biggest reason has to do with the fact that user engagement is a key factor in the success of any intranet project – particularly one that includes many collaborative and social tools. That means helping stakeholders understand how your intranet functions, what it is capable of and how they can benefit from it. Adopting technical terminology (an easy thing to slip into) to talk about an intranet does little to help stakeholders see its potential and visualize what they can expect.
A really simple analogy helps your audience see the story unfold with a familiar story line when you most want their attention and enthusiasm.
A place to call home
Talking about your intranet as if it were a house under construction (or renovation) works very well for multiple audiences. Not only does it help stakeholders understand what work needs to be done and the stages the project will follow, it helps diverse teams with distinct terminologies find common ground when discussing many aspects of the project – particularly when the discussions get into requirements building and software configurations.
From foundation to welcome mat
Feel like you could use a new way to talk about your intranet project? In the next few posts, I’ll expand (and perhaps overuse) the house analogy to take the project from planning through to launch.
Next: Part two: Foundation