Today we held a baby shower for a colleague of ours in the UK. Stae Young let us use the Agora Ballroom. He and Liv (his wife) put a ton of work into decorating the ballroom in a blue theme since Tracy is having a little boy.
We sent Tracy gifts via snail mail. She then opened them while we were all in the Agora ballroom and our pal Cal Gemini ported in pictures as Tracy opened the gifts and described them.
Cal also rendered out a picture of a quilt that one of our colleagues made for Tracy. She is waiting to embroider the birth-date and name before and sending it over the UK, but here as you can see, Tracy got a good look at it.
Of, course, since we were at the Agora, we needed to try out our (or more accurately Stae’s) dance moves ; )
So what Tony? Why blog this? Aren’t you basically just goofing off here?
Actually, I was moved to blog this based on a few things that Tracy said. She said that in the UK baby showers are not common so she did not know what to expect. At the end of our time together Tracy said she was really touched by all the effort her colleagues had put into producing this experience for her and she felt she now knew what a baby shower really was all about! Sounds like an authentic learning experience to me. So, she LEARNED what an American baby shower was, not by reading about it but by actually EXPERIENCING it.
Let’s go back to the sensibilities of VSWs again. We leveraged the DEATH OF DISTANCE to allow folks to convene in one place in cyberspace from many places in matterspace. We leveraged the POWER of PRESENCE within the Agora Ballroom and by porting in pics of the gifts that Tracy was opening which led to an ENRICHMENT of EXPERIENCE for all involved.
I would also venture to guess that she will remember this experience far more than a conference call or Centra session since our minds are wired to absorb things in 3D and there are a lot more memory hooks for us to hang stuff on when we experience things in three dimensions. So, we managed to share with Tracy an American cultual artifact in a digital world witout any of us having to leave our respective abodes, or countries for that matter.
Now, change the context from a Baby Shower to something like a Negotiation around a complex deal or a consultative selling situation around a white space opportunity and real possibilities for this experential learning platform as a source of competitive business advantage emerge.
By applying the sensibilities of VSWs in thoughtful and creative ways we can create truly new expriences that cannot be accomplished (either practically, financially or due to the laws of physics) in the real world.
Each week that goes by opens me up to more insights and the event horizon on possibilities moves further out into the vast abyss of opportunity. This platform provides a place in cyberspace where Don Tapscott’s Wikinomics concepts are coming to life in new and different ways every day. It truly is the wild wild west of the web. Grab a flag, stake your claim and build great things!
Over and out…gotta get some sleep for a change.