Philip Sheldrake

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Tag: performance management

Organizational performance – a private conversation that should have been public and is now

Adam Pisoni and Stowe Boyd

This is a conversation between Adam Pisoni, Stowe Boyd and me relating to a guest post I made to Brian Solis' blog, Impatience is a Virtue – What's Next for Social Business.

The conversation played out on email, which is ironic given that all three of us advocate "working out loud" unless confidentiality precludes it. I take the blame for emailing in the first place and hope to make up for the transgression by publishing it now. I have removed those conversational niceties that pepper emails, inserted some helpful hyperlinks and comments in square brackets by way of explaining some of the terms used and topics raised, and tweaked a few things to improve readability here.

[Photo of Adam by Intel Free Press. Photo of Stowe by Paul J Corney.]


Adam

Honestly, one of the most enlightening aspects of finally working within a real, big enterprise [Microsoft acquired Yammer in 2012] is the affect of performance management and budgets. Yammer loved to yell at our large customers to just change how they worked. That anyone at any level could affect change. But what you see inside large companies is that really good people will do all the wrong things either because they eventually feel pressured to optimize for what they are incentivised to do, or because their scope of power is too narrow to affect any change. This happens with budgets all the time. Two people in different parts of the org may have an idea that could make the company lots of money, but since the budgets were set up a year in advance, they can't shift the money between them. Read more

“Social business is dead!” … “Whatever!”

Published as a guest post on briansolis.com, Friday 8th November 2013, in response to Chris Heuer's post "Social Business is Dead! Long Live What’s Next!"


As he finished a game of Cut The Rope on his iPhone, my young godson asked what my phone was like when I was his age. I broke it down for him. I was in my twenties before someone offered to take north of ten thousand dollars for a basic digital camera, and not much less for a GPS device. And I got my first basic mobile phone (I explained that means just making phone calls and sending text messages) as I approached thirty.

A few days later, as she dispatched her umpteenth snapchat of the morning, my niece asked me why I obviously enjoy what I do for a living. Imagine a whole lifetime, I replied, during which the only innovation was a tweak to the angle of the plow shear.

Scientists and engineers have been good to us. We’ve come to expect serious technological innovation with the regularity of the seasons. So, just like Chris Heuer, I’m more than ready for corresponding organizational change.

Now.

As in right now!

Having reflected briefly on the vast progression of the Internet and the web, computing, mobile infrastructure and social media services – as if you needed a reminder – let’s look at what’s changed at the typical organization during this time, my adult lifetime. Or more pertinently what hasn’t. Read more