Tag Archives: collaboration

Interesting stuff from July 12 to August 7

The periodic roundup:

  • Do Things that Don’t Scale – Technologist and venture capitalist Paul Graham with advice for start-ups (it IS his game, after all) … it’s the stuff that can’t be automated that makes a difference, so do that.
  • How Drucker Thought About Complexity – You could be forgiven for thinking that since Peter Drucker worked in a simpler time, his thinking might not apply in our more complex environments these days. You’d be wrong … check out what John Hagel III has to say (read it quickly – it’s a limited access HBR article)
  • Overcoming the Barriers to Enterprise Collaboration – All the time I’ve been involved with technology, people and organisations have been pre-occupied with technology as a “silver bullet”, the magical answer to their problem(s) – enterprise social/social business has been no different. This is a reasonably balanced view of enterprise social media, and where/how it might help with your collaboration efforts
  • Robert McNamara and the Dangers of Big Data at Ford and in the Vietnam War – “McNamara felt he could comprehend what was happening on the ground only by staring at a spreadsheet—at all those orderly rows and columns, calculations and charts, whose mastery seemed to bring him one standard deviation closer to God.” Big data can be a powerful tool, but sometimes what you really need is eyeballs on the ground, where people do real things … either that, or we all just become part of the body count


Interesting stuff from February 27th through March 10th

The periodic round up:

  • Making collaborative work work – Is “social business” necessary for collaboration? No – ALL business is collaborative. But three simple “social” principles can make collaboration in your business BETTER. Simple in principle, that is … execution is the trick. You’ll see what I mean when you read the post!
  • Why Connect.me? – My piece on connect.me, a site which tackles the thorny issue of trust on the internet. If you know someone, or something about them, you can vouch for them on that topic. Over time, and multiple vouches, a reputation can be made evident, and trust can be built. My point is that trust is one of three things that needs to be in place before we see the missing 90% of the internet’s potential. The other two? Read on …
  • But are they working hard? – A look at the problems managers get themselves into when they concentrate on inputs (hours worked, “busyness”) rather than outputs (actual results); and when they try and attribute team results to individuals … most performance reviews completely ignore that individual achievements in a business context are extremely rare – most, if not all, results are a collective effort.
  • Edging toward the fully licensed world – So who owns what on the Internet? Doc Searls looks at why we need to think now about what sort of “ownership” we want for the Internet, before corporations turn it into a shopping strip, and we lose the freedoms that make the Internet valuable. SOPA, PIPA and ACTA are just the tip of the iceberg  
  • Right versus pragmatic – Note to big media: don’t fight demand; address it. A pragmatic approach to piracy illustrated by men’s bathroom habits …



Interesting stuff from August 15th through September 6th

The weekly round up:


  • Collaborative Learning for the Digital Age – It’s a longer piece, but an interesting discussion about attention blindness, and how you can use groups to avoid/minimise it. If everyone focuses on the one thing, you miss a lot of other stuff, but if everyone takes a different piece of the jigsaw, and then assembles it, a fuller picture emerges.
    There’s also some interesting thinking about assessment that plays out in corporate performance management …



  • - Every journey … – The other recent post that highlights the personal nature of enterprise2.0 … for adoption, people have to find a solution to their problem(s), and this doesn’t usually happen according to a project timeline, but one person at a time on a serendipitous scale



  • Talking about a world without faces – One of a couple of posts recently seen that go to the heart of a problem with the idea of “social business” or Enterprise2.0: in the end, social networking/media in the enterprise is only effective if people voluntarily adopt. The implication of that, often forgotten, is that some won’t. We have to be realistic, therefore, about what is possible … this post also demonstrates that adoption can only be maximised if we make the “social” part of every body’s “business”.



  • Leadership: Vivek Kundra, Uncle Sam’s first CIO – It may sound like the dream job, but the outgoing CIO of the United States found many of the same problems that are familiar to the corporates (albeit with a few extra zeroes appended) – projects over budget and schedule, poorly executed, and old technology. Maybe we shouldn’t feel so bad …



  • Your customer won’t take a bullet for you – Loyalty programs don’t really build loyalty in your customers – they’re a bribe or incentive to get them to so something they might not otherwise. The “new” buzzword, gamification, is also a pretty shallow substitute for a product and/or service that kicks ass. If you really want customer loyalty, make their lives better in some meaningful way …


Interesting stuff from July 25th through July 30th

The weekly round up:

  • Inventing the Future is Everybody’s Job – Increasingly, strategy and planning are moving out of the executive suite into a broader milieu for shaping directions. Why? “the world is just too complex, change comes too fast, and the challenges we face are too immense (and interconnected), for an insular clique of executives to chart the course of an organization from a blank sheet of paper and sheer brilliance” … is that the case in your business? What will you do about it?
  • Cooperation vs Collaboration – An interesting viewpoint on the difference between collaboration (typified as an outcome of “collectives” – groups with a single purpose) and cooperation (an outcome of “connectives” – a less-formal grouping of people with individual but related purposes), and the potential interplay between the two.
  • Why Exception Handling Should be the Rule – Handling repeatable processes is now table stakes – if you’re a sizeable company and  can’t handle the bulk of your business value transactions “automatically” with a standard (probably automated) process, you won’t stay in business for long.
    Where the differentiation comes is in handling exceptions to the “standard” process. These shouldn’t be seen as problems – they are often an opportunity to really put yourself ahead of competitors in the eyes of the customer … so it’s worth thinking about how to accommodate exceptions better.
  • Why corporate blogging is like selling uncut cocaine – Something of a sensationalist title perhaps, but it makes the point that getting your message out via third-parties (while still useful in some distribution channels) is diluting your company’s story … and increasingly consumers want to hear it “from the horse’s mouth”.

Interesting stuff from May 26th through June 3rd

The weekly round up:


  • A Customer Liberation Manifesto (PDF) – A bit of a meaty read, but has some interesting points to make about how how we should (and probably don’t) treat customers. It contrasts the familiar customer relationship management idea (CRM) with “customer manages the relationship” (CMR) – noting that most CRM activity isn’t REALLY designed to help the relationship, but to maximise the vendor’s profitable exploitation of that relationship. That’s not customer service … 

    And who knew there was such a thing as “service science”?



  • Our Time Is Not Our Own: Time Is The New Space – If you’re in a job that is measured by results, but you’re being judged by time, you’re probably in the wrong place. Most “knowledge work” (an increasing percentage of all jobs) succeeds when a particular set of outcomes is achieved – which may have very little to do with where and how you spend your “working” time, rather than some repetitive machine-like activity between 9am and 5pm.


  • Wikipedia And The Death Of The Expert – How does the Internet change the way we learn? Is expertise dead? Or do we just view it and use it differently these days? Knowledge is being recognised as provisional, not final; and reached via polylogue rather than decree.


  • Come on Chardy, let’s go party – Chardonnay Day | Thoughtpool – My write-up of the #chardonnay party with the Qwoff Boys. Who says chardonnay is passé?


  • The Pull of Narrative – In Search of Persistent Context – In a world of accelerating information flow, abbreviated communications and increasing content choices, persistent narratives which provide context are becoming more important as a means to finding sense in the noise. This post also touches on the importance of finding new narratives, rather than reverting to old but comfortable ones like fundamentalism and nationalism, the divisive effects of which will also be amplified.


  • A Hippocratic oath for the internet – An impassioned plea from Jeff Jarvis to the eG8 summit called by Sarkozy (seemingly an attempt to strengthen government control over the internet; more of a pandering to old business models; neither aim is particularly good for citizens) to stay away from the internet. As Jarvis says: “Sarkozy called this meeting to discuss the growth of the internet. It will grow only if it is open and free.”