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In 1995, IBM Global Services began implementing a business model that included support for the growth and development of communities of practice focused on the competencies of the organization. This paper describes our experience working with these communities over a five-year period, concentrating specifically on how the communities evolved. We present an evolution model based on observing over 60 communities, and we discuss the evolution in terms of people and organization behavior, supporting processes, and enabling technology factors. Also described are specific scenarios of communities within IBM Global Services at various stages of evolution.
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