Friday, May 30, 2008
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Sunday, May 18, 2008
Recently, after thinking more on collaboration and if it is socially just another version of herd theory, I went back to the Headrush blog. An important image, which the authors were so adept at making, caught my eye. To me, this image stuck because it captured the danger of COLLABORATION GONE WRONG!!!
Simply put: the group is dumb and the individual is smart! Kathy Sierra and Dan Russell, the authors of Headrush, have it right. Perhaps I can attempt a short outline of why this isn't collaboration.
First, one has to do the obligatory link from Wikipedia:
Collaboration is a structured, recursive process where two or more people work together toward a common goal—typically an intellectual endeavor that is creative in nature—by sharing knowledge, learning and building consensus. Collaboration does not require leadership and can sometimes bring better results through decentralization and egalitarianism. In particular, teams that work collaboratively can obtain greater resources, recognition and reward when facing competition for finite resources.Now that the "wiki" society has provided us an outline, and if we read this again and again, one can see the value collaboration brings. In the definition, words and phrases like "sharing knowledge", "better results" and "can obtain greater resources" only highlight the value of collaboration. Alternatively, CONSENSUS does not do this. Consensus, which is described above in the Headrush image as far as I'm concerned, is not collaboration. It is the opposite of collaboration. It is group mentality and we all know what happens when mobs of people get together:
My point is one shouldn't confuse CONSENSUS = BAD with COLLABORATION = GOOD...
Friday, May 09, 2008
As President Bush recently said in a news conference in late April "these are hard time". If this is the thinking of the President of the United States I imagine many companies are also feeling the pinch. Thus, they punt on innovation in favor of the bottom line. However, the BusinessWeek podcast/article argues that the best companies gain competitive advantage through innovation during "these times".
The podcast/article explores the two innovation camps:
The Haves - most likely larger companies or organizations with an innovative culture.
The Have-Nots - most likely smaller or organizations that don't have an innovation culture.
However, when I consider Syndicom's innovation solutions, I'm perplexed. Do the Have-Nots have it all wrong? Are CEO's missing an opportunity to gain competitive advantage by taping the resources right in front of them? Even BusinessWeek explores innovation programs that don't require expensive teams and tools. According to the article, companies like GE have innovated using lower-cost methods.
There can be an upside to the downturn. Low-cost methods for creating new products are easier than ever as emerging markets provide both cheap labor and booming pockets for growth. That's something No. 4 General Electric (GE) is finding with its first portable electrocardiograph made in India for that market.The BusinessWeek article opened my eyes to the value of innovating ALWAYS and finding more economical ways of doing it. One only has to take a breeze through Specialized's website, a bike company that focuses on innovation. Their moto: INNOVATE OR DIE.
Tuesday, May 06, 2008
"Americans are not material lovers they are material haters! Just look at Los Angeles"This quote spoke volumes to me. Not that I hate Los Angeles, but Watts is right. The entire city has grown in unnatural and unsustainable ways. According to Watts, if you're a material lover, you care intimately for the things you have/create. You devote the same respect for them as you would your own body. After hearing this, things changed for me.
As of last week, I realized how many "things" I own and that if I devote the time and attention my things deserve how much longer they will last. Also, I'll learn how better to service my stuff. Finally, I feel that my attention will warrant a greater understanding of what it means to CARE. Needless to say, this has done wonders for my wife - I've been doing a lot of chores lately...