January 18, 2006

The 5 Practices of an Exemplary Blog

I recently attended a presentation by the Dean of the Business school at Santa Clara University, Barry Posner, and he introduced 5 simple leadership practices students can use to be successful. However, I believe these practices are universal and I am going to apply them to leading a successful blog like Scobleizer and Web Strategy by Jeremiah

The Five Practices of an Exemplary Blog

Practice #1: Model the Way
Successful blogs exemplify thought-leadership. They add-value to current, basic knowledge and introduce their own perspective. They carefully turn "data" into "information" by adding knowledge and this is a vital step in creating an audience. Exemplary blogs lead by example by showcasing their knowledge and revealing it for the whole world to learn and follow. Successful bloggers are not afraid to take risks, even when their thoughts are controversial.

Practice #2: Inspire a Shared Vision
Exemplary blogs not only lead the way, but they inspire others to join the conversation and provide value-added information to the world. There is no such thing as “my” vision, it is “our” vision and our conversation. In fact, the joint enthusiasm for a shared vision provides just a spark of inspiration for others to join the conversation amongst an emerging community—community of experts, leaders, and evangelists.

Practice #3: Challenge the Process
Perhaps one of the most difficult of the Five Practices is being able to challenge a common belief and take a stand for what you believe in. Although this creates controversy, challenging the common beliefs and supporting your own is the way to go. In fact, just recently Jeremiah Owyang posted a blog about Why Blogs are NOT important. With all the buzz surrounding blogs, he wanted to make the point that the conversation taken place in the blog is what IS important. And now…other experts are adapting his beliefs and sharing them to their audiences.

Practice #4: Enable Others to Act
This may be one of the most important practices… “Enabling Others to Act.” Exemplary blogs welcome others to take part in the conversation and provide both negative and positive comments….this is the whole purpose of a blog! Blogs are not just another PR medium to attract customers, they serve a much more significant purpose, which is to converse with your audience (publisher to user, and user to user). The conversation that takes place between all users is rich in itself and sometimes is most beneficial, but it cannot happen if the blog does not enable others to act...so ask questions in your blog, ask your audience how they feel. <>

Practice #5: Encourage the Heart
Successful blogs should always “Encourage the Heart” by “recognizing contributions and celebrating values.” There are thousands of thought-leaders in the Web and when you come across one, publicize it. Let your readers know, tell them you have come across an interesting article/blog and you encourage them to read it. This does two things: first, it allows your readers to learn from others, and second it recognizes a “job well done” of another publisher. Nonetheless, the simple acknowledgement motivates publishers to continue their work and continue their conversations.


So what do you think about these practices? I want to here your thoughts and even additions…


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