The Self Aware Organization

September 15, 2014

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(Picture by Spencer Tunick)

This is yet another topic that has been running in the background of #hypertextual for a while now. Three events have contributed to promote it to the foreground.

First is the insightful essay by Freddy and Michael Ballé : Lead With Respect, and the subsequent conversation we had with Michael, Luis, Claude [FR] and Céline. The latter made an enlightening point.

“Leading with respect is not just a matter of personal ethics. It has to show, in actual behaviors and practices. It requires a constant effort of self-awareness, self-demanding mindset, and empathy with the diversity of team members.”

Second is the title of talk of Mary Poppendieck at the next edition of Lean IT Summit on 16th and 17th October : The Aware Organization. Last is this talk by Mike Rother, at Lean Summit 2012 where the author of #hypertextual favorite Toyota Kata establishes some interesting connections between neuro-sciences and our ability to learn.

The proposition of this post is that self-awareness is critically important for an organization to succeed, that it has to be deployed throughout the whole organization and, this deployment is the job of managers (and coaches).

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In 1944 George Loewenstein, a behavioral economist at Carnegie Mellon University, provided the most comprehensive account of situational interest. It is surprisingly simple : Curiosity, he says, happen when we feel a gap in our knowledge.

Made to Stick, the book from which this quote is taken, is a great book to benchmark and design your communication strategy whether it is to sell washing machines or lead changes in an organization.

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Surf Lacanau

(Version Française)

When I decided last year to take a new turn in my career, I was lucky enough to be able to choose from two different options, both very exciting: Enterprise 2.0 / Social Business on one hand , lean on the other.

After much thought, I have chosen the second option because it seems to me more deeply aligned with the challenges of today’s business, namely the need to navigate through the turbulences of our uncertain world. These turbulences and uncertainty are largely related to the digitization of our daily lives: the digital transformation of the organization therefore seems inevitable.

My hypothesis is that today, Lean is the obvious strategy to carry out this transformation, for the following reasons:

  1. digital transformation actually means a radicalization of the use of new technological opportunities,
  2. it’s all about management principles
  3. a model exists, embodied by the born digital companies (Google, Amazon, Facebook, Pixar, Twitter etc. …)
  4. their management cultures are explicitly or implicitly aligned with the principles of Lean.

(Warning, long truck ahead : more than 1800 words) …

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cronos-400

Un sujet qui me trotte dans la tête depuis une bonne année maintenant. Plus précisément depuis l’interview de Catherine Chabiron en charge du programme Lean chez Faurecia. Un des éléments que Catherine identifie comme structurant dans l’amélioration significative de sa DSI : la ré-internalisation des équipes :

We believe in insourcing rather than outsourcing, to maintain in house competences on our core services

L’autre source d’inspiration est cet article du toujours pertinent Bertrand Duperrin sur les conditions de succès de la transformation digitale. La deuxième partie de ce billet va donc questionner l’applicabilité de l’orthodoxie en stratégie SI (dont l’externalisation) dans ce contexte de la digitalisation de l’entreprise, un des enjeux majeurs des DSIs pour les années à venir.

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Luc de Brabandère est philosophe d’entreprise et fellow au Boston Consulting Group. Un de ces speakers pluri-disciplinaires à la culture très étendue, que l’USI propose à son auditoire pour étendre ses perspectives. Luc est intervenu en 2009 (voir article) et aussi en 2014.

Un ouvrage philosophique sur l’innovation : il ne s’agit ici pas de spéculation intellectuelle par un chercheur depuis sa tour d’ivoire ou sa bibliothèque d’université. On voit ici une réflexion inspirée par une confrontation permanente au monde des innovations et des trouvailles scientifiques. Une pensée qui fait cet aller-retour (déductif, inductif) incessant pour éclairer les grandes inventions de multiple perspectives.

L’ouvrage prend racine dans une question d’un des participants à une conférence sur l’innovation : “Vous dites qu’il faut sortir du cadre mais de quel cadre parlez-vous ?”.

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berkun

Scott Berkun was in Paris for a few days as he was invited to speak at USI 2014. That was a great opportunity to meet him and to discuss about his books, his time at Microsoft and WordPress, how and where he grew up and how it feels to be a writer in the 21st Century. Scott has been kind enough to allow us some of his time, the most important thing he can give as he wisely writes in Mindfire.

A great dinner at the terrace of La Mauvaise Réputation, in Montorgueil neighborhood. And a few drinks as well : champagne, Armagnac, beers and a bottle of St Estephe 2011 for good measure: a bit young, but we still managed to work it out. It was so inspiring, I’ve still managed to remember just about everything despite the drinks. Yet, if I remember well the ideas, the transcript may not gives good justice to Scott verbal skills and precision in the words he uses.

There are not so many opportunities to meet one of #hypertextual heroes and that evening has been a milestone in the history of this blog. This is how the conversation went …  Read the rest of this entry »

Alors que l’édition 2014 de l’USI approche à grands pas, un petit retour sur une des sessions les plus marquantes selon Guillaume Plouin (cf l’entretien qu’il a accordé pour #hypertextual) avec Luc de Brabandère, intervenant que nous retrouverons dans l’édition 2014.

Une présentation essentielle en ce qu’elle donne des définitions claires et précises de ce que sont la creativité et l’innovation. Avec ces définitions et un humour absurde et tongue-in-cheek, le conférencier apporte un éclairage sur les approches qui permettent (et empêchent) de faire advenir ces deux carburants de l’économie du 21ème siècle.

Quelques extraits retranscrits ce dessous … Read the rest of this entry »

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