Have You Taken Advantage of Me?

Have you ever taken advantage of me?

…I hope so.  I take advantage of you whenever I can. 

I’m talking to you, Bob Mosher.  Just yesterday I shared some thoughts about Training & Performance Management with my boss.  Guess what?  I stole the thoughts from you.  That’s right, I used your PowerPoint slides .  I had seen your presentation as part of a live web based tour of e-learning.  Afterward, I googled your name, found your “Performance Supports” blog, jumped to your wiki, and found the PPT in resources.  I gave you full credit, but my boss  still views me as the source of the ideas.  

I’m also talking to you, Jane Bozarth.   I first saw one of Mosher’s slides in a training session of yours.  Then I saw it in your book, E-Learning Solutions on a Shoestring.  You gave Mosher full credit, by the way.  Still, I associated the slide with you even though I knew you weren’t the primary source.  Social Learning is like that, good finders are just as valued as good creators. 

I’ve taken advantage of you, Dave Wilkins.  Your podcasts, blogs, posts, and emails have helped me understand a concept that is still new to me.  The  Overcoming the Top 10 Objections to Social Learning webinar was great for helping me examine my own resistance to integrating social learning into my training designs.  I’ve offered nothing in return, but I still hope that someday I’ll have something great to contribute. 

And you, Kevin Jones .  I even won some great elearning software, Articulate Engage, from you in an SLQTOD contest!  (update–working on it with IT folks) I’ve enjoyed your podcasts & twitter posts.    Any thoughts I have regarding Social Learning and Social Media are from you and Dave.  Oh, and guys, I’m about to initiate my first Social Learning project.  It will be like jumping in the deep end to learn how to swim, except I’ll be taking non-swimmers with me. 

I’ve taken advantage of you, Cindy Huggett.  I’ve used your PPT slides as guides to help me plan projects.  You are the one who convinced me to try Twitter, and WordPress! I attended an ASTD meeting but still haven’t joined yet,  (I will, I promise!).  I use your trainer tips from Twitter  and end up looking like an old pro…I mean that in a good way!

My Social Learning used to take advantage of people in more old fashioned ways.  I’d whine to co-workers about my work-related problems on the job.   These friends would give me new perspectives to consider, and many of them modeled better ways to get work done.  Unfortunately, I’m sure I used up some of their time unnecessarily, especially when time for small talk is added to the equation. 

Now I bring work challenges to online  communities.  Small talk is rare, and I often find that someone has already posted concerns similar to my own.  Only interested people respond, so the responses are always relevant.  Likewise,  I only respond to posts when I have something of value to add. 

Participating in these learning environments gives me an escape from other work tasks, but these online exchanges are work-related.  They influence my overall performance in positive ways, and I am in complete control of the time that I invest in this activity. 

I’m grateful to others for how much I learn from them.  My lack of contributions makes the relationship somewhat unequal, and I find that I am taking more than I give.  I hate to take advantage of people in this way, but I’m going to keep doing it. 

I hope one day I can say that you took advantage of me.  It would be gratifying if any of you could get back a little of what you’ve given.  

And now for a 1928 Rodgers & Hart song that’s creepy because it’s cute, “You Took Advantage of Me” :   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mi-UHObqP1s


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2 Responses to “Have You Taken Advantage of Me?”

  1. Kevin Jones Says:

    Take advantage all you want!

    A couple things you said really caught my attention: 1) More old fashioned ways of social learning – “I’d whine to co-workers.” And to follow that, 2) “Small talk is rare, and I often find that someone has already posted concerns similar to my own. Only interested people respond, so the responses are always relevant.”

    I had not thought of it quite like that before, but I really like that take. Thanks for opening up my eyes to that POV.

    My turn to take advantage of you… 😉

  2. Attribution in a Web 2.0 World Part 2 « Social Enterprise Blog Says:

    […] media in this regard, my fellow bloggers are showing how it should be done.  Check out this post by Daniel Stevens (@dstev on […]

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