Return.
Date: May 13th 2001.
InfoWorld.com


SUBJECT: 2 serve or NOT 2 serve


"What can you do when your team wants to collaborate with partners--
but others in the organization fear the consequences?"

The question in my view applies to old economy business organizations
who still don't quite get the Net, the need for transparency, and openness.
And by that I mean they tend to be in my view "politicalized"
business
entities where there has been a history of divisional competition
which
left the organization fractured/divided.

On the other hand, I believe, the dot.coms run by those 30 years old
and younger do NOT buy into the "traditional political" mental set of
the old economy businesses and are -- in my view -- by their very
nature
"open", "transparent", "nimble", and "speed-oriented".

For them, I feel, their view is "it's not about connection, it's about
collaboration" (one marketing ad) and "collaborate or die" (another
marketing ad).

They instinctively understand that "collabortion" increases "legitimacy"
and also leads to fewer bad decisions and, as a result, translates into
greater "to market" deployment speed. Clearly, they know it is all about
"SPEED". Theoretically, there is reason to believe OUTSIDE COLLABORATION
is an antidote to incestuous organizational dynamics, acts as an "early
warning system" when the market goes bad, and "intellectually anchors"
the organization and allows it to use the outside collaborators as a
kind of "focus group" to "initially" try things out.

At the same time, it is a justification for a business to have recourse
to "free agency" and "outsourcing" which in turn creates an environment
that facilitates greater "effective engagement" with the customer as its
focus instead of secrecy.

For that to be possible, I strongly believe, employees have to handsomely
paid and appreciated which they are in the dot-coms, but NOT in the old
economy where there is an accumulation of silent employee grievances
that
can sabotage the implementation of a new "outside focus", that of
collaboration.

I would suggest that the solution for old economy businesses would be to
"ramp up" the salaries in order to speed the adoption of the this new approach
of PARTNERING WITH THOSE ON THE OUTSIDE who work with the business

to achieve synergy and better-then-expected respone to changing market
conditions.

To the "improved salaries" has to BE added the creation of a non-threatening
work environment so that everyone can freely contribute to the business
while esuring their own marketability.

I would liken the speed of an old economy business to that of a turtle and
its situation to that of stagnant waters that fomented graft".

The FAST SPEED of the new economy does away with that in my view and
ensures
that DEPARTMENTAL VECTORS only intensify the overall vector of
the company
so everyone is pulling in the same direction WITH FORCE.

Consequently, I surmise, in the new economy businesses there is NO
"INHERENT"
opposition nor resistence, but rather AN ITCHING to get
things MOVING FAST.

Now, let's answer the question posed at the outset: resistence to
collaboration would have to be itemized and overcome.

That might mean compulsory early retirement for the dissenters for the work
culture today is NO LONGER a COMPETITIVE one, but a collaborative one:
the
goal is NOT TO WIN, but TO SERVE.

This NEW collaborative APPROACH will even allow competitors to collaborate
on projects of "mutual benefit".

Folks, we're all in this boat TOGETHER (so they say) - HOPEFULLY.



Ken,
K+ President