Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Gov 2.0: Mission, Tools, Metrics, Teach (The Four Laws of Levy)

I got thinking again this week about one of my favorite Gov 2.0 practitioners, the EPA's Jeffrey Levy.
Levy is important not just because he's one of the nicest folks in Gov 2.0, which he is, but because he's making real strides in creating road maps for integration of social media into the practice of government. One of his contribution is the short mantra, "Mission! Tools! Metrics! Teach!"
You can read Levy's thoughts on these four points at his blog, Government 2.0 Beta. Whatever your agency or charge, these four points are great to build flesh around. While everybody is hot for Facebook and Twitter, picking tools without looking at mission is recipe for short-lived success.
Are you a small town or local agency? Perhaps a Ning network is what you're looking for, or a targeted Twitter outreach strategy using something like LocaFollow. Looking for collaboration in a field of practice? GovLoop groups might hold the key. Creating documents or strategy with a far-flung team? Maybe you want PBWorks, WetPaint or MixedInk.
Metrics will also be specific to your mission. I'll take ten team members working effectively on a multi-pronged outreach strategy over 500 Facebook fans any day. Also consider the New York Times, which recently created Twitter lists for breaking news stories, then dismantled them when the real-time version of the stories quieted down.
Finally, as the Social Media Club's mission statement goes, "If you get it, share it." Follow the lead of folks like Levy, who created a simple blog for sharing the stories of what works and what doesn't.
Mission! Tools! Metrics! Teach!

~ Adriel Hampton is a San Francisco public servant and host of the Gov 2.0 Radio podcast.

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