Friday's Dutch Treat

Here are some of the observations and insights that were shared via social media during the past week.

During a client workshop in the Netherlands this week, I explained how I use Twitter favourites to collect items of interest during the week and then review these before posting my regular Friday’s Finds post on this blog. I will often tweet an article and then add it to favourites so that I pick it up during my weekly review. The key to PKM is to find a routine that works for you. KM has to be personal to work in the long run.

For example, earlier this week @MHHoekstra had written a blog post that was pertinent to the workshop. I quickly looked at Maarten’s post, a conscious learning process, when it was tweeted by @C4LPT and then added it to my favourites to review later. Two days later, I have read the post and refer to one of the graphics below:

Also, via @nilofer I came across an article in The Atlantic that has me confirming many of my thoughts on work being automated and outsourced. Higher-value manufacturing work, requiring greater task variety and hence more tacit knowledge and informal learning, is actually coming back. But standardized work, with high task standardization, is not. The piece is entitled: The Insourcing Boom.

What’s happening in factories across the U.S. is not simply a reversal of decades of outsourcing. If there was once a rush to push factories of nearly every kind offshore, their return is more careful; many things are never coming back. Levi Strauss used to have more than 60 domestic blue-jeans plants; today it contracts out work to 16 and owns none, and it’s hard to imagine mass-market clothing factories ever coming back in significant numbers—the work is too basic.
Appliance Park once used its thousands of workers to make almost every part of every appliance; today, every component GE decides to make in Louisville returns home only after a careful calculation that balances quality, cost, skills, and speed. Appliance Park wants to make its own dishwasher racks, because it can, and because the rack is an important part of the dishwasher experience for customers. But Appliance Park will likely never again make its own compressors or motors, nor is it going to build a microchip-etching facility.

Finally, here is a photo from my last day in Amsterdam. For more information on the Latin inscription, see this short description from File Magazine.


2 Responses to “Friday's Dutch Treat”

  1. Maarten Hoekstra

    Thank you for referring to my blogpost Harold, I’m very curious what you and your followers think of the post! And thank you for the great suggestions on social media during the workshop. I’m using your Twitter favourites routine now, and I’m liking it!


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