Business

Leadership in open source communities

Leadership in most organizations is top-down. The CEO tells the VP, who tells the director, who tells the manager, who instructs his employee to do work. Culturally most people are conditioned to think that's expected. But open source communities rarely work that way, and that's one of the oddities people discover upon getting involved in open source--and often they need a period of acclimation to get used to it. It’s also certainly one of the strengths of open source communities, as well as one of the least understood functions, even among those in communities of practice. » Read more

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Your open source management approach: Red Team or Blue Team?

When I hear people in the technology industry talk about the benefits of open source software, one of things they mention often is their belief that open source software “gets better faster” than traditional software (David Wheeler has done a nice job collecting many of the proof points around the benefits of open source software here). » Read more

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Why work?

Most economic theories (and many managers) assume that the best way to get what you want from workers is give them the right financial incentives.

But most real people have lots of reasons for working besides just making money. They work to have fun, to socialize with others, to challenge themselves, to find meaning in their lives, and for many other reasons. To bring out people’s best efforts in their work, we need to engage more of these non-monetary motivations.

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Six ways to build a solid community

Recently, fellow opensource.com writer Chris Grams remarked that our collection of articles and tips on community-building was getting rather large. Perhaps we had the material to write a set of best practices for building communities. So here’s my stab at it. » Read more

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What does Google's management change say about the open source way?

Last week, Google CEO Eric Schmidt announced in a post on his blog he was stepping aside and Google co-founder Larry Page would take on management of Google's day-to-day operations as the new CEO. Although Schmidt is staying on as Executive Chairman for now and will continue to have an ongoing role in the company, many including myself, were surprised by the news. » Read more

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Reflections on one year of opensource.com

A year ago today, we turned on the lights at opensource.com.

Our hope a year ago was to create a place where people could gather to learn about and contribute to the growing movement toward applying open source principles beyond the software industry.

You have shared your stories about how open source principles are changing your world and the world around us. » Read more

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Request your limited edition opensource.com anniversary t-shirt today

They're all gone! Thanks to everyone who requested a shirt. For those of you who didn't get one, you've still got a chance through our Twitter giveaway.

Tomorrow’s the first anniversary of opensource.com, and it’s been a fantastic year, thanks to you. Whether it’s by writing articles or reading them and sharing the stories, you helped us highlight nearly 550 ways open source touches our businesses, education systems, governments, laws, and lives.

In celebration of this milestone, we're giving away special edition one-year anniversary t-shirts to registered members who » Read more

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Leadership as trusteeship

Trust is an essential human attribute and virtue. When we are born, we are completely helpless and at the mercy of others. We instinctively trust that someone will look after us, nurture us, protect us. Being trusting and being trustworthy are central tenets of what it means to be a human being.

Yet, there is a huge trust deficit in our society today. There is a crisis of trust in government, in religious institutions, in our educational system, in the health-care system and in the financial system. There is deep distrust within the public at large towards the corporate world in general and towards most companies and their leaders. Within companies, there is a great deal of mutual distrust among employees, and among employees and customers, suppliers and leaders.

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Is your brand out of control?

I’m lucky enough to have the opportunity to spend much of my time these days doing something I love—helping clients position and manage their brands. My experience helping build the Red Hat brand over ten years had a profound impact on the approach I take to brand positioning. » Read more

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Work is not the opposite of play!

How many times have you heard of an ex-employee saying “It just wasn’t fun anymore?” That’s a refrain all leaders ignore at their peril. There is a rich body of research and philosophy that argues that the psychological experience of play is a fundamental ingredient in engagement and satisfying, productive effort. As this Moonshot suggests, making work more playful is a serious and urgent undertaking with potentially dramatic implications for the performance and vitality of all organizations.

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