Diversity, complexity, chaos and working smarter

Here are some of the things I learned via Twitter this past week.

@jhagel on an expansive view on the power of the narrative – via @jseelybrown @quinnovator

But here’s the catch.  Narratives cannot be crafted by PR departments.  They emerge out of, and are sustained by, daily practice. They require taking a long-term view of trajectories that extend well beyond the individual institution. They also need to penetrate beneath the surface events that occupy our daily newspaper headlines to tap into the deep forces that are shaping these surface events. Our existing institutional leaders are generally poorly equipped to take on this opportunity.

Complexity, chaos and enterprise-architecture ~ by @tetradian – via @DavidGurteen [explores the under-represented Chaotic domain of Dave Snowden’s Cynefin framework]

But what’s not there in Dave’s model is any consistent framework to tackle the Chaotic domain – instead, we’re just told to run away back to the safety of one of the other domains. And yet, following that same logic above, we can see straight away what its base would be: the aspirational dimension, the explicit choice of meaning and purpose – otherwise known in the enterprise-architecture as vision, values and principles.

The only metric that matters is engaging passion” ~ @jhagel via @panklam

In his elegantly constructed Tuesday morning keynote, the always inspiring John Hagel nimbly set  the tone for a business-focused conference. Starting with last year’s big E2.0 question “How do we get adoption for social software?” he linked adoption to passion and performance (“If you are interested in performance you have to be interested in passion”). People who are engaged in activities they are passionate about will connect with other people — and if you’ve got the platform available, and right, then they will use it in conjunction with passion. The only metric that matters is engaging passion.

Resiliency & the Working Smarter Framework: Building on Strengths ~ by @brentmack

As you can see, the role of Management in this model is to tap into or mine the emergent (next) practices stemming from staff collaborations and transform these practices into new tools and processes.

In this type of workspace, the new tools and processes are put into service much faster. It is accepted that rapid change and the complexity of overlapping issues is the norm. Organizations are positioned more on the outer boundaries where change is happening. Management at the bottom of the pyramid supports a work culture where staff use a variety of social media tools that enables effective social learning activities which fuels collaboration and innovation.

[Brent then creates a diagram unifying working smarter & resiliency, with this graphic summary of the working smarter framework]

@Spigit – New post! Getting Innovation Results from Our Cognitive Surplus – “super post by the @spigit boys” via @petervan

Let’s return to the three elements of this underutilized asset, employees’ cognitive surplus: knowledge, perspectives, heuristics.

All need interaction to be surfaced and applied in context.The knowledge to address a new challenge isn’t likely to be recorded anywhere. It’s the tacit knowledge you want to get at. Perspectives are vital, but can only be applied in the context of the issue. They don’t really have a life outside of a specific need. There is no recording of perspectives to apply to a problem – it’s all about interacting. And heuristics are similar. Methodologies to apply to a problem can be recorded, but we’re all coded differently. Someone has to actually apply those problem-solving methodologies.

Given these requirements, what are the keys to getting innovation results from our cognitive surplus?

1. Seek out diversity in innovation efforts

2. Focus the innovation effort

3. Use social graph for communication, not collaboration

[this post motivated me to make a small addition to a previous graphic]


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