"And there is another problem with Lowry’s analysis here too. He engages in classic retrospective coherence, in which he traces the causes of the present situation back to a set of actions. There is nothing wrong with this, and again, he is not wrong in some of this analysis, probably. But he projects that limited root cause analysis into the future in such a way that he is claims to be able to judge the efficacy of responses to the crises. And in so doing, he does not use this look back at the situation to illuminate his own biases, which would actually be valuable. This is a fatal error in dealing with complex situations. The desire to “fix” Baltimore is fundamentally psychotic. You cannot “fix” a situation like this without eliminating the people that in the middle of it. Lowry does that. Not a single voice quoted in his article is a person living in the middle of this.
And you cannot evaluate the efficacy of responses based on past performance. We are dealing with a complex system. A transformative moment in Baltimore is just as likely to happen as a result of all those neighbours who cleaned the place up as it is but creating a fundamental policy shift or slapping your kid on video or rejigging the tax system to allow more Republicans to be registered.
The problem with that of course, is that in order to deal with situations like this you need to engage the people in middle of it to both make sense of what is going, make meaning of actions, initiate and lead multiple responses at all kinds of scales to what is going on. Having pundits at a distance pronouncing on the efficacy of efforts based on a pre-ordained ideological frame is not helpful because it entrains decision makers to look for data that supports their conclusions.
Unfortunately this is exactly what passes for public discourse and policy making these days. The best thing to do is be quiet and listen to what the people on the ground are saying and doing. They’re stories are the only ones that matter, and their leadership is the only leadership that will make a difference. they may require support from higher levels of government or broader contexts, but they are not helped by all of us pronouncing on their efforts. We have absolutely no benchmarks with which to gauge success or failure. No one has the “answer” for Baltimore. Instead it’s about shared work, shared meaning making, shared leadership and grounded sense-making. It’s about thinking and acting differently."
"Without a conductor, A Far Cry arguably behaves more like a quartet than a symphony orchestra; the group relies on consistent and clear communication amongst its members to keep the music going. Not all chamber orchestras are conductorless—but the conductorless model is an emerging trend in 21st century music entrepreneurship, likely because it encourages democratic values as well as a kind of scintillating energy that you may not be able to find in a symphony orchestra. “We have a pretty unique dynamic,” violinist Miki-Sophia Cloud told me."
over 100 examples of social media policy from many fields/industries
"We show that over the past 40 years, structural change within the labor market has revealed itself during downturns and recoveries. The arrival of robotics, computing, and information technology has allowed for a large-scale automation of routine tasks. This has meant that the elimination of middle-wage jobs during recessions has not been accompanied by the return of such jobs afterward. This is true of both blue-collar jobs, like those in production occupations, and white-collar jobs in office and administrative support occupations. Thus, the disappearance of job opportunities in routine occupations is leading to jobless recoveries."
"Their work shows the economy has continued to generate jobs, but with a focus on nonroutine work, especially cognitive. Since the late 1980s, such occupations have added more than 22 million workers."
"Between 1973 and 2008, the average number of earthquakes of magnitude 3 or more in the central and eastern U.S. was 21. Between 2009 and 2013, that number was 99. And last year alone, there were 659."
"Something potentially momentous is happening inside startups, and it’s a practice that many of their established competitors may be forced to copy if they wish to survive. Firms are keeping head counts low, and even eliminating management positions, by replacing them with something you wouldn’t immediately think of as a drop-in substitute for leaders and decision-makers: data.
“Every time people come to me and ask for new bodies it turns out so much of that can be answered by asking the right questions of our data and getting that in front of the decision-makers,” says James Reinhart, CEO of online secondhand clothing store thredUP. “I think frankly it’s eliminated four to five people who would [otherwise] pull data and crunch it,” he adds.
The story is the same at dozens of other startups, says Frank Bien, CEO of Looker, a company that offers a cloud-based service for turning a company’s data into dashboards that anyone in the firm can use. Across numerous interviews with other startups, as well as Looker competitor RJMetrics, I heard the same themes again and again: Startups are nimbler than they have ever been, thanks to a fundamentally different management structure, one that pushes decision-making out to the periphery of the organization, to the people actually tasked with carrying out the daily business of the company. And what makes this relatively flat hierarchy possible is that front-line workers have essentially unlimited access to data that used to be difficult to obtain, or required more senior managers to interpret."
"But computers do not just replace humans in the workplace. They shift the balance of power even more in favor of employers. Our normal response to technological innovation that threatens jobs is to encourage workers to acquire more skills, or to trust that the nuances of the human mind or human attention will always be superior in crucial ways. But when machines of this capacity enter the equation, employers have even more leverage, and our standard response is not sufficient for the looming crisis."
"When you understand the 60% rule, you’ll realize that when someone on your team makes the wrong decision, you likely would’ve made the wrong one in their shoes, too. Even the best of us consistently make incorrect product decisions.
Given that, the point as a leader is not to make right and wrong decisions. It’s about creating an environment in which people working with the product day after day can make unbottlenecked, swift decisions until they hit on the right ones."
"We don’t only connect with people; we link with topics, with contexts. The challenge is to see all the filters and linkages as communication patterns that are either keeping us stuck or open up new possibilities. We need new skills of dynamically connecting to people and topics. This is a growing challenge when fighting information overload and distractions. Social media tools have developed tremendously on the publishing and sharing side. The next developments need to take place on the sense making side."
"This system comes down to 4 basic concepts:
Dream It. What do you really want from life? What are your goals, dreams and ambitions? If you don’t know, none of the rest of this stuff is going to matter.
Dump It. Get it all out of your head and onto paper. Clear your mind so you can truly be productive.
Map It. Use a mind map to create a simple system to manage your overall goals (both big and small picture).
Chunk It. Harness the power of a Japanese productivity technique from the 1940’s and a simple kitchen timer to break everything down into simple, visual tasks."
"This series explores the real sharing economy — where wealth and power are shared, not just consumer goods and spare bedrooms. These real sharing entities share resources, knowledge, and decision-making responsibilities as they co-create community goods and services. Then they share the abundance together.
Troublingly, a grow-grow-grow economy makes us all more reliant on money. Real sharing economy projects make money less important, like the Buy Nothing groups on the Facebook and tool-lending libraries that Grist already writes about. This series will tour examples of Seattle’s emerging sharing movement: a bike cooperative, an urban food forest, and a community solar program.
Planting the seeds of a real sharing economy is no easy task. But it’s easier to share the work than go it alone."
"Complex problems aren’t solvable; complicated ones are.
Address complexity by sense patterns and weak signals and amplifying them; solve complicated problems by analysing data and problem solving.
In complexity, pay attention to what works and ask why?; for complicated problems, keep your eyes on the prize and study gaps (ask why not?)
Be informed in your strategy by stories, myths and parables that translate across many contexts; for complicated problems, adopt “best” practices and rule based solutions.
Employ collaborative leadership to address complexity; employ experts to solve complicated problems.
In complexity, truth is found in stories; for complicated situations, truth is found in facts.
Complex planning requires anticipatory awareness, meaning that you have to constantly scan for meaning through the system; a vision won;t help you. In complicated situations a vision is useful and the end state can be achieved with logical, well planned steps.
In complexity, the future is already here, but it is quiet and hidden in the noise of the culture. in complicated systems the future is not here and it is well understood what it will take to get there from here.
In complex systems, the solutions will come at you obliquely, out of the blue and in surprising ways, so you need to cultivate processes that allow that to happen. In complicated systems, problems are tackled head on from a position of knowing as much as you can about how to proceed and then choosing the best course of action."
"Decades ago, John Dewey, America’s foremost education philosopher, asserted that students learned best through experience and that democracy “cannot go forward unless the intelligence of the mass of people is educated to understand the social realities of their own time.” Escuela Nueva puts that belief into practice. I’ve witnessed the demise of many ballyhooed attempts to reform education on a mass scale. But I’ve tabled my jaded skepticism after visiting Escuela Nueva schools, reviewing the research and marveling at the sheer number of youngsters who, over 40 years, have been educated this way.
"So let’s get beneath the cloud of leadership theory, to the ground of management practice. Maybe then more so-called leaders will do the right thing, namely cease leading by remote control, disconnected from everything except the “big picture.” In fact, how are they to create even that? Big pictures have to be painted with the brushstrokes of grounded experience.
It has also become fashionable to complain that we are being over-managed and under-led. The opposite is now a greater problem: we have too much heroic leadership and not enough engaging management. We need to recognize that some of the best leadership is management practiced well, also that anyone with ideas and initiative can exercise leadership"
"What is the basis of great leadership?
From an in-depth look at employee networks, various leader types are identified…
I trust Luis to walk me through this career decision
I trust Karl's technical advice on this algorithm
I trust Anne's political take on this marketing decision
I trust Rita's grasp of what our key customer wants
I trust Pat to guide this organization through troubled times
Notice the key word in each sentence -- trust. We follow those we trust.
No trust, no follower-ship. No follower-ship, no leadership.
We follow others for various reasons, some because of their knowledge, some because of their vision, some because of their inspiration, and all for the confidence we place in them."
"The eight Orpheus principles are:
Put power in the hands of the people doing the work. An organization’s creative potential can only be fully realized when its members are given the authority to make decisions that have impact.
Encourage individual responsibility. With authority comes responsibility. Instead of waiting for a supervisor, individuals take the initiative to resolve issues as expeditiously as possible.
Create clarity of roles. Unclear roles can lead to conflict, wasted effort, poor morale, and poor quality. Clarity of roles minimizes confusion and ensures that each individual’s energies are effectively focused.
Share and rotate leadership. Encourage everyone to lead at some point. By sharing and rotating leadership, organizations can benefit from the unique skills and experience of each individual.
Foster horizontal teamwork. Cross-organizational teams have wide-ranging individual expertise. Teams with individual and group authority reduce the time it takes to make informed decisions and ensure that everyone works together to achieve goals.
Learn to listen, learn to talk. Everyone is expected to listen actively and intently, and to speak directly and honestly. Successful work requires a constant flow of two-way communication.
Seek consensus (and build creative structures that favor consensus). The group cannot move forward unless its members agree to move together in the same direction at the same time. Seeking-and finding consensus is a vital element in how to get things done. Put clear and effective mechanisms in place to resolve deadlock.
Dedicate passionately to your mission. Passion drives the decision-making. The mission isn’t imposed from above, but is determined—and constantly refined—by the members themselves."
"I’ve mentioned in previous posts that I am really interested in the marketing industry, specifically content marketing and branding, as I think there are some things that they do really well that can apply to the learning landscape and vice versa. Now that I am getting into a PKM routine my attention has started to shift more in this direction. Here is what I noticed this week:
A post by Seth Godin (former VP of Direct Marketing at Yahoo and bestselling author) found via Feedly on giving people what the want: This post, to me, is a reminder of what value we can add to those in the marketing industry. Seth sums it up nicely:
“Don’t say, “I wish people wanted this.” Sure, it’s great if the market already wants what you make… Instead, imagine what would happen if you could teach them why they should.”
A post on the hottest Uber links by Marshall Kirkpatrick who runs Little Bird (a company thatcreatesinfluencer discovery and engagement tools) found. Two things struck me as interesting:
Marshall chose to work out loud and share his links with the world instead of emailing them to a friend. I just tlove finding examples of others outside the L&D industry using the term “work out loud.” It means it’s resonating!
Marshall mapped the Uber community (using Little Bird) to find the most influential members of that community online and see what they are talking about. It had me wondering how software like this could help people trying to build their personal learning networks.
A tweet by Jane Hart linking to an article by Tom Spiglanin on the demise of the e-learning brand. I love seeing others in the L&D indutry make the marketing connection as well. This also made me ponder what e-learning would look like if we had actually followed the brand principles he outlined from the start.
"the e-learning brand has eroded, become diluted, & has therefore outlived its usefulness" http://t.co/4LgaMivb1G <grt piece @tomspiglanin
— Jane Hart (C4LPT) (@C4LPT) February 5, 2015"