authenticity

Open leadership, on demand

Every time there's an Open Your World Forum webcast, I mark my calendar. And every time, something comes up, and I miss the webcast. Fortunately for the absent-minded among us, you can get the webcasts on demand.

(Here's where I should also admit to having a short attention span--and loving the option to fast-forward!)

So this morning, I pulled up the Charlene Li webcast, Open Leadership. » Read more

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Some authenticity advice from the Avett Brothers

I’m passionate about helping organizations develop more authentic, meaningful, and productive relationships with the communities around them. Last week, I suggested a few ideas for how to begin thinking about a less self-centered approach to community strategy that might help. » Read more

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A better way to win: Profiting from purpose

"I would not give a fig for the simplicity on this side of complexity, but I would give my life for the simplicity on the other side of complexity." —Oliver Wendell Holmes

When it comes to managing their costs, most companies operate with a simple model. They start by trying to maximize their gross margins so that they have a high cushion for spending in areas where they feel they need to spend heavily in order to compete, such as advertising and promotions. But a growing number of high-performing companies are showing that there is a better way to manage spending and improve performance. These companies live and operate on the other side of complexity.

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We're about to find out if companies mean what's in their mission statements

Manonamission.blogspot.com is a great collection of corporate mission statements. I recently used its search function to find examples of companies that prominently and publicly state something close to "people are our most important asset." Here's a partial list: Nestlé, Procter & Gamble, Land O' Lakes, Danaher, Archer Daniels Midland, Valero, Performance Food Group, Norfolk Southern, and Border's Group. And here's a group of companies that similarly value "empowerment:" Caremark, Sara Lee, Heinz, Dow Chemical, GE, and Alcoa.

I don't mean to pick on these companies; they're just particularly clear examples of how all organizations talk about their people. I've never come across a modern enterprise that publicly states anything like "We want our people to put their heads down and do only the jobs that have been assigned to them. We want their thinking to stay 'inside the box.' When we want their opinions, we'll ask for them. Our machines and business processes are our most important assets; our people just keep them running." Instead, virtually all organizations stress the empowerment of their people. » Read more

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To tweet or not to tweet: How companies are reining in social media

Social media like Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn enable ordinary people to do international live broadcasting. It's little wonder companies worry about the potential damage to their brand or reputation from wayward tweeting employees, and I am told many a celebrity's agent has considered adding a “no drinking and tweeting” clause to his contract. Here's a look at how some companies are writing (and rewriting) their social media policies to deal with the risks they face. » Read more

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Five questions about authenticity and the open source way with Jim Gilmore

A few months ago, I had the opportunity to meet Jim Gilmore, co-author (with Joseph Pine) of the book Authenticity: What Consumers Really Want. I first read the book a few years ago, and it really struck a nerve for me—these guys were on to something.

So I convinced Jim to subject himself to a Five Questions interview about the place where authenticity and the open source way intersect. » Read more

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Video: Staying in touch with nature by sharing.

I posted an article not too long ago about some folks we met at the Open Video Conference last year and Brian Palmer is another great speaker that we got to witness.

Brian is the Digital Channel Manager for Earth-Touch, a wildlife documentary company based out of London and South Africa. There's something different about Earth-Touch, though. They only document the wildlife. This sounds like a no-brainer and expected until you hear some of the practices that other companies employ in capturing some of the dramatic scenes on film. Earth-Touch's focus is on simply showing what happens in the wild, naturally, and interfering as little as possible. » Read more

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Three signs your corporate culture isn't ready for the open source way

It's a good bet that the next generation of defining companies will have corporate cultures built the open source way-- around openness and collaboration, while fostering community and culture that extend outside the company walls.

In fact many of the defining companies of the first decade of this century show these characteristics (with one very notable exception we discussed earlier).
» Read more

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