#hypertextual sometimes – Feb 2011

#hypertextual is back on the sharing links market again after the attempt of hypertext weekly ages ago (and on top of the #hypertextual daily @ paper.li).

I’ll try to make it monthly but I’m not so sure I will commit hence the rather blur announced periodicity : sometimes. In the process it evokes a lovely song from The Cure so all in all it’s not so bad. Let me be your curator  …

The Connected Company – Communication Nation

If there’s only one article you read this month it has to be this one. It is a pretty long one but it is worth every nanosecond you spend going through it. A glorious blog post by Dave Gray Founder and Chairman of XPLANE. It’s not everyday that Tim O’Reilly offers to turn a blog post into a book as Lee Bryant undisclosed. Excerpt :

“As you triple the number of employees, their productivity drops by half (…) Historically, we have thought of companies as machines, and we have designed them like we design machines (…) The problem with this kind of thinking is that the nature of a machine is to remain static, while the nature of a company is to grow.”

Gary Hamel – Inventing Management 2.0

Gary Hamel is a constant inspiration of #hypertextual. He has been ranked the most influential business thinker by the Wall Street Journal and his book The Future Of Management probably is one of the best management book of the decade. Excerpt:

“Management 1.0 was built to encourage reliability, predictability, discipline, alignment and control. These will always be important organizational virtues, but in most industries, getting better at these things won’t yield much of an upside.  That’s why our management systems need to be re-engineered around the goals of adaptability, innovation, engagement and accountability—which brings us back to the issue of leadership.”

Andrew McAfee : Does your company know what it knows

Andrew McAfee elaborates on the famous Lew Platt (Former CEO of HP) famous quote : “If HP knew what HP knows, we would be 3 times more profitable”.

As I discovered during a recent tour of corporate mission statements, almost all companies say they want to empower their people, who are their most important asset. But the sudden appearance of a set of tools that does just that appears to have caught many companies off guard. Their decision makers talk not about empowerment, but instead act like nannies, guards, security paranoiacs, or pessimists about the people they hire, pay, and entrust with the future of the organization.

#hypertextual made a blog post on Dr McAfee excellent talk at Lotusphere in Orlando. It also is worth a click.

Denis Howlett – Tibco launches tibbr : enough to make Enterprise 2.0 viable

The official Mr Grumpy of the Enterprise 2.0 activists mob sees some value into an Enterprise Social Network solution : Hallelujah ! Actually Denis is an unvaluable asset of the company playing the devil’s advocate and helping us keeping our feet on the ground.

TIBCO has been integrating data and providing process modeling for around 25 years. You’ll find TIBCO in large enterprises where there is a need to integrate real time data across disparate applications and systems. It understands massive scale having developed the messaging backbone for NASDAQ and the major Wall Street banks. In 1999, Vivek Ranadivé, TIBCO CEO wrote the book on the publish/subscribe real-time enterprise: The Power Of Now. In other words, TIBCO understands how to move and expose enterprise data at scale in real time.

In the hour TIBCO spent with me, I felt myself being drawn into what tibbr can offer and seeing use cases without having to worry whether the technology can deliver. Unlike other systems, I wasn’t left thinking that this is a solution looking for a problem. It has much more of a self evident feel than other systems I have seen.

Rawn Shah – The Fifth Shift in Business Technology

Rawn Shah probably is one of the most relevant blogger on the Enterprise 2.0 topic. His blog post about the networked enterprise has been of the main influence behind the #hypertextual series on the topic.

This fifth SHift in business technology obviously is Social Networks as reported during Lotusphere 2011 by IBM Collaboration Solutions General Manager Alistair Rennie :

M. Rennie described major shifts in how technology has transformed business over the decades: the Mainframe, Departmental computing, the PC, and the Internet. To this he added Social Business as the next major shift. Each of these have had a tremendous impact not only in computing, but more so for how businesses organize and execute their business operations. Each of the prior technologies has been so transformative and necessary that we cannot imagine our lives without them. Mr. Rennie described shifts like these as “really rare.” What is more “as rare as these shifts are, the early predictions about [their impact] are usually underappreciated.”

David Heinemeier Hansson – The End of the IT Department

Yet another brilliant post by the 37Signals hacker extraordinaire. 

The problem with IT departments seems to be that they’re set up as a forced internal vendor. From the start, they have a monopoly on the “computer problem” – such monopolies have a tendency to produce the customer service you’d expect from the US Postal Service. The IT department has all the power, they’re not going anywhere (at least not in the short term), and their customers are seen as mindless peons. There’s no feedback loop for improvement.

Riitta Raesmaa – Social Wolf in sheep’s closing – ready for the social business

Best quote of the month from this blog post by Riita : If you put fences around people you get sheep

Larry Greiner’s model of organizational growth and development consists of five development phases, which are made of two stages; evolution and revolution. What he means is that each evolution stage causes its own revolution (crisis). The original phases and the following crisis are:

  1. Phase of evolutionary creativity followed by leadership crisis;
  2. Phase of directed evolutionary growth followed by an autonomy crisis;
  3. Phase of evolutionary growth through delegation followed by a control crisis;
  4. Phase of evolutionary growth through coordination followed by a crisis in bureaucracy; and
  5. Phase of evolutionary growth through collaboration followed by another crisis of unknown origin.

Matt Linderman – What happens when Yahoo acquire you

Another 37signals blogger get the hypertextual nod. After flickr and del.icio.us this is MyBLogLog yet another Web 2.0 iconic start-up bought by Yahoo who becomes moribund.

Whether it’s Flickr, Delicious, MyBlogLog, or Upcoming, the post-purchase story is a similar one. Both sides talk about all the wonderful things they will do together. Then reality sets in. They get bogged down trying to overcome integration obstacles, endless meetings, and stifling bureaucracy. The products slow down or stop moving forward entirely. Once they hit the two-year mark and are free to leave, the founders take off. The sites are left to flounder or ride into the sunset. And customers are left holding the bag.

H. Jarche & T. de Baillon : The Evolving Social Organisation

An insightful post  by two respected figures of the Knowledge Management and Social Business communities. A great read, though it could sound a bit too holistic for the Denis Howlett of this world :

Hyper-linked knowledge flows have made organizational walls permeable. Official channels are competing with an expanding number of informal communications. A collaborative enterprise is becoming  the optimal organization for such a networked economy, capitalizing on these expanding knowledge flows. To innovate, organizations need to collaborate internally and this is social. To participate in their markets, organizations, customers and suppliers need to understand each other and this too, is social. Social learning is how knowledge is created, internalized and shared. It is how knowledge work gets done.

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