Monday, January 08, 2007

Take this Idea Please! Interoperability Facilitator

Lolling in bed this morning listening to NPR I heard a new word: interoperability.

It's a fancy word that means to coordinate communications between services or agencies, and Virginia is the first state to have it's own coordinater, Chris Essid. His job is to ensure that in an emergency all the agencies or services that are needed can talk to each other. For example, the police and EMS workers talk to the fireman, etc. A good idea surely, but why make it sound so complex? (that's fodder for another post, I suppose).

Chris says that getting agencies to agree on a common language is important, but hard to achieve. For example, the 10-4 system (remember CB-ers saying '10-4 goood buddy') has gone from a uniform system to one that's unique to each locale. 10-54 might mean alcohol situation in one agency and livestock in the road to another. You see the problem.

That got me thinking...these folks need facilitators to come in and help them create a framework for thinking and a new language even before they can have an Interoperatiblity Coordinator.

What does this mean to you? Facilitators and mediators, think about how you can use your skills to create more preparedness. You might offer facilitation services to towns and cities trying to improve their preparedness. How about creating a class to teach facilitation skills to those who want to be Interoperability Coordinators?

Try. Fail. Learn. Grow!




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