best finds of 2015

Every second Friday I review what I’ve noted on social media and post a wrap-up of what caught my eye. I do this as a reflective thinking process and to put what I’ve learned on a platform I control: this blog. Here are what I consider the best of Friday’s Finds for 2015.


All things are subject to interpretation. Whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth.” – Friedrich Nietzsche – via @surreallyno

@ericgarland – “Humility is often painful, but arrogance is always fatal.

@willrich45 – Engagement: “Not a metric for learning. A prerequisite.

“I think it’s a discovery all artists make: the most interesting and bravest work is likely the hardest to make a living from.”@berkun

“It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it”  — Upton Sinclair – via @jerrymichalski


Healthcare with fewer managers  with @josdeblok

“Jos de Blok is a nurse.  He owns a company that employs 9,000 community nurses in Holland.  The company has only 45 administrators, about a 10th of the average for a company that size.

The company, Buurtzorg, is the highest rated care organisation in Holland, as rated by patients.  It is the highest rated employer in the country for 3 out of the last 4 years.

Its overheads are 8% vs the average of 25%.  Imagine how much extra money you have we would have for patient care if we could copy this.  Its employee sickness rate is about half that of similar organisations.

The company is 7 years old and now has 60% of the community nurses and community patients in the country.  Nurses are leaving their old companies in droves.

Instead of managers, hierarchy and bureaucracy the nurses manage themselves in teams of about 12 nurses.  They employ their own staff, order their own supplies, solve their own problems. And they love it!”

How the future of work leads to the future of organisations – by @rossdawson

“Work. There are two critical drivers of change in work: connectivity and machine capabilities. As we are connected almost any work can be done anywhere in the world, with richer interfaces enabling greater comfort with remote work and the ability to perform physical labour. Increased capabilities of robots and computers are matching and moving beyond those of humans in many cases, destroying jobs. There is the potential for these forces to reduce employment and polarise work opportunities. However we can also envisage and create a future of work in which job creation exceeds job destruction, and we make work increasingly human, tapping our expertise, creativity, and aptitude for relationships to create a more prosperous world.”

@nytdavidbrooks: What human skills will be more valuable in the future, because machines can’t do them? via @marciamarcia

“In the 1950s, the bureaucracy was the computer. People were organized into technocratic systems in order to perform routinized information processing. But now the computer is the computer. The role of the human is not to be dispassionate, depersonalized or neutral. It is precisely the emotive traits that are rewarded: the voracious lust for understanding, the enthusiasm for work, the ability to grasp the gist, the empathetic sensitivity to what will attract attention and linger in the mind.”


@rogerschankReading is no way to learn

“When you have someone to ask, you ask. Reading is what you do when you have no one to ask.”

@mathemagenicHolding the space

“I help to negotiate rules and exceptions from those, to prevent or resolve conflicts, to make appointments and to get to people and places. I do all kinds of things “meta” –  keep eyes on meta-learning, observe, document, reflect and get others in the loop.

Most of the work kids do themselves. It’s their learning and I’m holding the space for them.”

@DonaldClarkDeficit model in education: a dangerous conceit?

“The conceit of education is that the answer to bad schooling is always more schooling … When education is seen as a cure and cognitive deficiency a disease, we need to worry.”

Peter Senge on learning – via

All learning occurs in a social context.

In any learning process you can be 100% sure that you will fail

Learning is a process of disciplined mistake-making

An environment of safety is crucial to learning

“If people knew how hard I had to work to gain my mastery, it would not seem so wonderful at all.” – Michelangelo – via @AmyBurvall

Mastery by Amy Burvall

Mastery by Amy Burvall


Dee Hock, Founder and CEO Emeritus of VISA, on capitalism and spirituality – via @janhoglund

“So, if you really think deeply about such things, you come to realize that every organization is nothing but a mental construct, an idea around which people and resources are assembled theoretically in pursuit of common purpose and in accordance with a belief system of some sort. So I became convinced that it is really the ultimate design problem. If an organization is really nothing but a mental construct, then anything you can conceivably imagine in putting together the relevant materials, which include people and their relationships, is possible. And this construct will either bring out the best in people or the worst in them. In the long run, the command and control model rewards and brings out the worst in people instead of their best.”

As Systems Collapse, Citizens Rise@Otto Scharmer

“To summarize, the refugee crisis is a microcosm of the future that we all face over the next 10-20 years. The social grammar of that crisis looks like this:

• As rules and regulations (that always reflect the past) are increasingly out of sync with the actual reality on the ground, we see

• Systems starting to fail, break down and collapse, which leads to…

• People, journalists/media rising to the occasion or not–and accordingly…

• The logic of collective action arising from either the past (muddling through or regression) or from the present moment (co-sensing by tuning into what the emerging future calls us to do).

If the latter happens, we begin to see that the crisis and breakdown of our larger systems are actually a phenomenal opportunity to renew and update our old bodies of rules and regulations to be more fluid and in sync with the actual situation on the ground.

If the former happens we will see an enormous magnification of human suffering and amplification of the system breakdowns on an unprecedented level of global scale.”

The Trains to Hope, by @mintzberg141 & @wolfgangmuel11

“At first, we in the city administration were very surprised. But then we realized that this was not uncoordinated. It was a highly professional, high speed performance. That is when it dawned on us that here was the self-organizing plural sector in action. So we in the city administration decided to give The Train of Hope all the technical support it might need, including background support on call. We then invited The Train of Hope to join the city’s crisis management network, an offer that was accepted. I am delighted to report that this cooperation has continued to perform consistently well, with no end date yet clear.” – Wolfgang Müller, Chief of Operations, City of Vienna

Cooperation is what makes us human – via @RogerFrancis1

“Ultimately, Tomasello’s research on human nature arrives at a paradox: our minds are the product of competitive intelligence and cooperative wisdom, our behavior a blend of brotherly love and hostility toward out-groups. Confronted by this paradox, the ugly side—the fact that humans compete, fight, and kill each other in wars—dismays most people, Tomasello says. And he agrees that our tendency to distrust outsiders—lending itself to prejudice, violence, and hate—should not be discounted or underestimated. But he says he is optimistic. In the end, what stands out more is our exceptional capacity for generosity and mutual trust, those moments in which we act like no species that has ever come before us.”

Sensemaking by Igor Kopelnitsky via @sebpaquet

Image by Igor Kopelnitz

Image by Igor Kopelnitsky

4 Responses to “best finds of 2015”

  1. Madelyn Blair

    Harold, this is a strong collection. There are three of these I will capture for myself and two that I had already identified for myself. Thanks for all of your work. —Madelyn

  2. Max Gallo

    Thanks Harold. I follow you atheistically – I cannot say religiously as I am not. Love your work; I would add one more quote, which I am sure you have cited before. “There are only two things wrong with the education system. 1 – What we teach. 2 – How we teach it. (Roger Schank). Have a great 2016.


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