oz-friendly beta conversation 2017-08-01

I will be hosting the next Beta Conversation on Tuesday, August 1st at 10:00 UCT. This time is to accommodate all those Australians suffering through their Winter, while we enjoy the fruits of Summer in the northern hemisphere 😉

The subject will be Personal Knowledge Mastery (PKM) and leadership. The Harvard Business Review article, The Best Leaders are Constant Learners, gives a general idea of the themes to be discussed. Participants can add their own questions in advance. (more…)

the complexity of capitalism

Every fortnight I curate some of the observations and insights that were shared on social media. I call these Friday’s Finds.

@alaindebotton: “Academia: an invention of genius to keep the brightest, most enquiring minds from tampering with the status quo. Paddocks for intellectuals.”

Is Teal the new Black? Probably Not

“I suspect that the clean, uncomplicated notions put forward in the book [Organizing for Complexity, by Frédéric Laloux] will be undone by context, the actual details of implementation and to a large extent power-dynamics (for example, autocratic ‘Teal’ leaders making ‘non-Teal’ people do things they don’t want to do). In other words, I’m not sure I actually believe Teal even exists. I’m not sure I believe any of the ‘stages of development’ actually exist.

I believe the colour schema is an instrument, a not very accurate map. And like all instruments it appeals to a certain instrumental logic, one that craves a simpler world and shies away from complexity. In my opinion, this cognitive style mostly serves to distract from the important questions of who we are and what type of organizations we want to be creating.”


future of work influencers

I don’t put much stock in lists and ‘best of …’ rankings as they rarely tell you the methodology behind the system. When Antonio Santo (@akwyz) shared a list of the top 50 influencers on ‘the future of work’, I asked about the methodology. Vishal Mishra (@vmishRRa), CEO of Right Relevance,  kindly obliged.

“The Right Relevance score of an influencer for a TOPIC represents the authority within the social community for that topic, say for e.g. ‘machine learning’, of that influencer. It is a normalized score ranging from 10 to 100. This numeric influence is then inductively applied to the topical content curated by that individual for measuring relevance.

The process is fully algorithmic and leverages ML, semantic analysis and NLP on unstructured data at scale. It is primarily graph based and involves performing a 2-level proprietary people rank”
Influencers Topic Scores & Rankings

I use Twitter as a medium to teach people how to find experts and how to build a knowledge network. This is a core part of my PKM Workshop. Understanding the algorithms behind search results and rankings is an important network era literacy, and I am glad that Right Relevance (RR) shares some of this. (more…)

more than mere digital transformation

Is the automation of what has traditionally been human work inevitable?

I know what you’re thinking – there’s some things that robots can do well, but there’s a lot of things that they can’t, and it will be a long, long time before they can match or outperform humans in these tasks. Construction, food preparation, agriculture, mining, manufacturing… while many of these jobs can be automated, my job absolutely cannot be taken by a robot. I’m safe.

Sorry, but that argument is deeply flawed. Thanks to accounting conventions and tax laws dating back centuries, a robot doesn’t need to be better – or more efficient – than a human being at a task to make a business more profitable. It just needs to be 34% as good, or 11% as good, depending on that business’s accounting and amortization policies. —Hatcher Blog

It seems that our bookkeeping systems, developed hundreds of years ago, are the main culprit in edging out human labour in favour of technological capital. John Sharp, Partner at Hatcher, thinks part of the solution is a guaranteed universal income. I agree that this is part of it, but we also need to radically change our education and training systems. This cannot come soon enough, as 43% of senior executives see the “robotic automation of processes” as a high priority over the next two years. As difficult as it has been to earn a decent wage, in spite of rising productivity for the past several decades, it seems it will get even tougher. (more…)

filter failure is not acceptable

Fake news. PR hype. Content marketing. Advertorials. Click bait. Propaganda. Doublespeak. Newspeak. Yellow journalism. Shock jocks. Post-truth. Spam. Phishing.

Digital information comes from all directions, and much of it from dubious sources or with the intent to misinform. Today, it is just too easy to create, replicate, and share digital information. As a result, we are enveloped in it. This is why ad blockers on browsers have become so popular. It’s why everyone needs spam filters for their email. Filter failure is not acceptable in the digital workplace. But neither is living in an information bubble.

The challenge for any organization dependent on knowledge is to ensure that implicit knowledge from those closest to customers and the external world informs the explicit knowledge that is shared throughout the company. Knowledge flow has to continuously become knowledge stock. Individuals practising personal knowledge mastery have to be an intrinsic part of organizational knowledge management. Knowledge comes from and through an organization’s people. It is not some external material distributed through the chain of command. (more…)

beta conversation 2017-07-20

I will be hosting the next Beta Conversation this Thursday, July 20th at 14:00 UTC [07:00 PDT, 10:00 EDT, 15:00 BST, 16:00 CEDT]. The subject will be Personal Knowledge Mastery (PKM) and leadership. The Harvard Business Review article, The Best Leaders are Constant Learners, gives a general idea of the themes to be discussed. Participants can add their own questions in advance.

The session will be 90 minutes long. For participant confidentiality, these sessions will not be recorded.

The format of each session is as follows:

  1. Presentation of the key themes by Harold
  2. Discussion of any questions provided by participants in advance
  3. Open discussion


understanding systems

Every fortnight I curate some of the observations and insights that were shared on social media. I call these Friday’s Finds.

“We build our computer (systems) the way we build our cities: over time, without a plan, on top of ruins.” —Ellen Ullman, via @CodeWisdom

@Eric_Weiner: “All travel is time travel. We journey in order to transport ourselves to another era or, better yet, change the rhythm of our lives.” (more…)

freedom inc. review

In these times, can you afford to continue stifling the vast majority of your people instead of giving them a chance to help your business? —Freedom Inc.

If you liked the book Reinventing Organizations (2014) then you will like Freedom Inc. written in 2009. If you have not read Frédéric Laloux’s Reinventing Organizations, read Freedom Inc. instead. Freedom Inc. has many case studies from the same companies that are in Reinventing Organizations but the former are more comprehensive. Carney & Getz definitely have done their homework as they delve into what creates a liberating company. They are much less prescriptive than Laloux in what they learn about corporate liberation and instead focus on finding core principles. They understand that in complex human systems all contexts are different. They offer insights from a wide variety of companies and industries.


Jay Cross Memorial Award 2017

The Internet Time Alliance Jay Cross Memorial Award is presented to a workplace learning professional who has contributed in positive ways to the field of Real Learning and is reflective of Jay’s lifetime of work.

Recipients champion workplace and social learning practices inside their organization and/or on the wider stage. They share their work in public and often challenge conventional wisdom. The Jay Cross Memorial Award is given to professionals who continuously welcome challenges at the cutting edge of their expertise and are convincing and effective advocates of a humanistic approach to workplace learning and performance.

We announce the award on 5 July, Jay’s birthday.

Following his death in November 2015, the partners of the Internet Time Alliance (Jane Hart, Harold Jarche, Charles Jennings, Clark Quinn) resolved to continue Jay’s work. Jay Cross was a deep thinker and a man of many talents, never resting on his past accomplishments, and this award is one way to keep pushing our professional fields and industries to find new and better ways to learn and work.

The Internet Time Alliance Jay Cross Memorial Award for 2017 is presented to Marcia Conner. (more…)

our simply complex world

Every fortnight (or thereabouts) I curate some of the observations and insights that were shared on social media. I call these Friday’s Finds.

@ScottSantens: “Our problem is not that jobs are going away thanks to technology. It’s that we require jobs for income, and believe 40 hours is ‘full-time'”.

@Richard_Florida: “Cities need to be places of chance encounter and eccentricity, rather than exclusivity and segregation.”

What are the lessons people most often learn too late in life? by @dsearls

“Humans are learning animals, and among the things we all learn eventually—or should—is that knowledge is provisional, truths are opinions, and our first calling is to learn more and keep our mind open, even though that gets harder as experiences accumulate and prejudices with them.”