High status deadens experience

That Bob Sutton piece on GM also has a great attack on how the company dishes out free cars as perks. The higher you are in the company, the more attractive the deal. At low levels you buy your own car and look after it. As you rise you get a free car but you […]

Structure and freedom

Dave Snowden has good post about putting tools in their place. The essence of his argument is this: If you pick up a tool and it fits your hand its useful, if you have to bio-rengineer your hand to fit the tool something is going badly wrong. He argues that with new technologies overenthusiastic early […]


It’s hard to know where to begin in talking about the state of the world economy but one theme that constantly returns for me is this: there is a lot to be said for placing less faith in supposedly exceptional leaders. Many of those claiming authoritatively that they know what’s best for us have been […]


Fab little video giving the headsup on Social Innovation Camp. What a great event. Social Innovation Camp II, Dec 2008 from The People Speak on Vimeo. Hat tip: Rohan at NESTA

“It’s unacceptable not to share what you know”

Very interesting post by Mark Brady. It contains this diagram. I usually hate this kind of thing but found this one quite engaging. It explores how we respond to shocks; I’m intrigued by the parallel paths of responding to both good news and bad. It comes from this paper.


Penny Edwards’ post – Are we really collaborating? – got me thinking. I’m wary of definition deckchairs, but I liked the idea of seeing a difference between collaboration and mere co-ordination. For me, collaboration involves something richer, more complex (so also messy), getting diverse groups to create things together. Co-ordination is more about getting everyone […]

The benefits of rough prototypes

David Smith pointed to this article about innovation at P&G. I think it smacks a little too much of the corporate Kool Aid; I’m just naturally wary of claims about “transformation” especially of human beings. Still, this quote about their experience of co-creating with customers resonates well with me: Participants get scared using such rough […]

Cynefin Framework, down under

Shawn from Anecdote plays with a new web app called Sketchcast. He uses it to explain Dave Snowden‘s Cynefin framework. The result is something rather brilliant I think: This is a great bit of co-creation from which I learnt a lot. Dave’s model is pretty awesome and Shawn’s iteration helped me understand it better; the […]

We’re connected…

NESTA have had some interesting events lately. They’re clearly into what Steve Moore calls “the convening power of the brand” as they assemble groups of people and interesting speakers, usually relying on word-of-mouth through social networks to get the right people in the room. Last night, they had short talks by Howard Rheingold and Mark […]


Josh Porter has a good post on recent events at Digg. This is the bit that most interested me: One is as described by Mike Arrington of Techcrunch: Digg Surrenders to Mob. Simply using the word “Mob” makes for great press. We gravitate to mobs because we know they’re messing with the Man. They’re anti-authority […]