consensus

The best idea wins: Jim Whitehurst on the Red Hat meritocracy

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There’s a Southern expression that goes, "Says easy, does hard." In this case, it’s easy to say that your company is focused on collaboration and ideas. But many executives conflate the terms "collaboration" and "consensus." Seeking consensus and creating a democracy of ideas is not what we at Red Hat would call collaboration. In fact, it’s a misstep. Rather, managers at Red Hat make it a practice to seek out ideas from those who’ve shown that they typically have the best ideas—those who have risen to the top of our meritocracy. » Read more

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Deliberative cooperation

Deliberative cooperation

The Deliberative Corporation is a technology-supported process for sustainable decision-making. It allows any organization or governing group to consult its population. The process builds trust and knowledge so that the implementers can find out what the people would think if they were thinking. It builds political capital and informed consent so leaders can make the right decision even when this involves significant complexity and difficult tradeoffs.

This process integrates a proven methodology for obtaining representative, informed opinions from a scientific sample with a patented technology that empowers an entire population to offer their views. We call this combination of techniques the Deliberative Corporation process.

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How to build an open data initiative for your city

How to build an open data initiative for your city

Montréal Ouvert is a citizens’ initiative to obtain a formal open data policy for the city of Montréal, Canada. Launched by four Montrealers in August 2010 to mobilize public and political support for the adoption of an open data policy for the city of Montreal, it has had considerable success. The online presence includes 567 Facebook Fans, 743 Twitter followers and tens of thousands of visits to its website. Over 1 year, Montréal Ouvert organised three public meetings, two hackathons, and presented at over 8 conferences – not to mention blogging, tweeting, report writing, media interviews and general communication in both official languages – no easy task! » Read more

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True collaboration embraces conflict

Effective collaboration is essential for creating value. Indeed, it's one of the reasons we create corporations, because organizations are more effective than individuals at allocating resources. But knowing and doing are two different things. As organizations grow, collaboration can suffer—particularly across silos, as people learn to work for the benefit of their own group rather than the whole. This lost potential in collaboration is a huge, untapped source of competitive advantage, one that executives appear to be aware of. » Read more

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You're making decisions by consensus, but are you collaborating?

Recently I came across an article by Roy Luebke at Blogging Innovation that asked the rather interesting question, “Is Management by Consensus Killing Innovation?” While I've (thankfully!) never had a manager whose decision-making was contingent upon the agreement of a team, I have spoken with many people who confuse the concept of collaboration with consensus.

Collaboration does not require consensus. Collaboration means working together toward solutions, pooling talents and ideas, and recognizing both successes as a team and the specific contributions of members. Consensus is a team's unanimous agreement on a decision. I am prepared to argue that when consensus is consistently and quickly reached, collaboration may not be happening at all. » Read more

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