Ideas to get all internal Digital Champions together

New Contributor

Hi everyone

we created an internal Digital Champions community (~50 people across the business) in August 2021. I'd like to get all of them together for a day to:

  • Celebrate their achievement and work to help upskill digital capabilities across the business
  • Offer them the opportunity to brainstorm and identify further ways to utilise Microsoft products more efficiently (e.g. workshops). 

Has anyone done this in their organisation? What worked/didn't work? Any ideas you have and would be willing to share?

Thank you. 

Vera

5 Replies
Hi Vera, all great ideas and well worth doing if you haven't already! One thing I will say it is best to upskill before you brainstorm with workshops. They need to understand the capabilities before you can discuss ways to use more efficiently. Are you looking at in-person or virtually? If you're brainstorming virtually then break it down into smaller chunks. Make sure you prioritise the brainstorm ideas into a few quick wins first, that way they will want to come back for more and think deeper so you can then run workshops further with the business. How you celebrate their achievement comes down to time/money. There are ways to do that along the way with the Champions Management Platform. Maybe it's even winning time with someone who can help lift their digital skills 1:1. There is a lot of ways to tackle the above, be create and have fun.

@Kirsty_McGrath_MVP thank you very much for your response. Great suggestions, especially focusing on quick wins.

When we established the community, we just installed Microsoft Teams, which was a big focus area for our champions. They have received several demonstrations (I can't call these sessions 'training') by Microsoft about the various MS Teams functionality. 
We continued with Microsoft demonstrations throughout the year on a monthly basis, covering topics selected by our champions. This gave us insight into functionality we didn't know existed in common tools, such as PPT, etc.. 
We also trialled the Champions platform with a group of volunteers but received the feedback that this requires too much manual work (tracking 'events'). Have you been using the Champions platform and what is your experience?
If you organised such a Champions day in the past, did you include Microsoft trainers/speakers or did you keep the day internal?
Thanks again. You input is much appreciated.

We held Champion meetings to define their role which was to be an advocate and share information about O365 so tips & tricks, upcoming features, etc. were shared. When it was a large group, they tended to not speak up. We held some smaller group and one-on-one conversations with some of the champions and even did a focus group of sorts with volunteer users that included questions that were not skewed for the answers you wanted to hear. Look up The Mom Test (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hla1jzhan78)

The CMP does take work yes but it’s also part of the ‘job’, a way to track and then reward. Having active engagement does take being an active participant. I don’t want passive Champs where they also don’t work for it, just want to be drip fed info.

As for Champs Days, I ran these for both Microsoft as the specialist, bought in Microsoft also as resources and ran personally as part of my business. Running with internals is more successful as it’s someone they trust, that knows the tools and challenges etc. But, having externals also can give different industry insights on how others do it. Running different workshops for different reasons gives variety that Champs love.

Great thread... I wanted to add that when I ran the internal User Group at Microsoft monthly we always tried to highlight "new" features (whether new or not) based on a business scenario that people in the Champion team could relate too. Too often we train on the "tech" without connecting it to the business. So we'd highlight "How to Run a Marketing Campaign" or "Communicating your Wins with SharePoint News" and then provide some handouts. As the leader of the group it was my teams responsibility to figure this stuff out but we had help by asking each of the Champions to present things they'd learned. That helped us keep it fresh, gave people speaking experience and built trust among the members so they would speak up more readily.

Another thing is that there is no substitute for setting a good example in how you use the tech yourself. If you aren't using Whiteboard, PowerPoint Live, Video embeds or SharePoint News - start now. Also lots of first party apps to embed in Teams like Forms and Polls to "show by doing"

Lastly, if you are in person - never underestimate the power of FOOD or SWAG at a meeting.  Even something inexpensive like stickers is great. Worked for me every time :) Good luck and tell us how it went!