What does ‘Work Out Loud’ mean?

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The way we work in the modern business world is rapidly changing. We are no longer tied to a single office base, but instead can be found working from whatever location makes most sense – customer sites, cafes, trains, or home. We may also be working flexible hours to fit round the needs of our customers, or the demands of our personal life.


These changes in the way we work have been enabled by the growth of the Internet, mobile technologies, and more recently cloud based software.


Technology means that we now can collaborate and share information more easily than ever. Cloud based tools, like Google Apps, enable a whole team to work together online on a single document. They can do this at the same time, no matter where they are all based. But to really take advantage of all this technology we need to adopt a new style of working, which we call “working out loud”.


Working out loud pioneer John Stepper says of the approach: ‘Working out loud combines the age-old principles for building meaningful relationships with the modern abilities to share your work, get feedback, and interact with others who share your interests. It wraps all of this in a mindset of generosity. Working out loud starts with making your work visible in such a way that it might help others. When you do that – when you work in a more open, connected way – you can build a purposeful network that makes you more effective.’


We were so inspired by the concept that we adapted it to fit our company name – but what does ‘working out loud’ actually mean, and how can it benefit you?


Working out loud

Working out loud involves every employee making their work observable and narrating what they are doing as they go along.


Making your work observable

You can make your work observable by using collaborative working tools like Asana, Trello, and Google Apps. These help colleagues to be aware of what you are doing, and gives them the chance to comment on your work and contribute to it while it’s still work-in-progress.


Narrating your work

By describing the work you are doing as you go along, you can better track and manage your progress, and give other employees the chance to learn from, and comment on, the issues you’re tackling. You can narrate your work by using one of the many online business platforms that give everyone access to the kind of social networking functionality that you might find on Facebook, Twitter or blogging sites.


Working out loud in this way requires a spirit of generosity and openness where you aim to help and support colleagues just as much as pursuing your own personal goals. If everyone works this way organisations can create a strong flexible network of employees across the business, where staff remain connected with each other wherever they are based.


The tools required

Working out loud and the cloud go hand-in-hand. There are now hundreds of online tools that you can use to make work more visible. Collaborative platforms, and social intranets, like Jive or Socialtext, make it easy for staff to narrate their work, and provide real-time updates on what everyone is doing. Google Apps, and Microsoft Office 360, enable whole teams to collaborate on documents or presentations. Specialist task management tools like Asana or Trello make it easy to manage tasks and work across a whole project.


How we can help

Work Out Loud can help you to select the right software tools for your organisation, and implement them in a way that makes the vision of working out loud a reality.
Give a member of our team a call to get started today.

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