Management Innovation Exchange

In a tough job market, your open source experience may be an asset in more ways than one

open source work experience

Does this describe you?

You've been using open source software or contributing to open source projects for a long time. Perhaps you are in a job where you utilize open source tools regularly, or maybe you are just fooling around with them for fun or to learn new skills.

You've been known to tell (possibly true) stories that highlight how long you've been a part of the open source world (from "I remember downloading the first version of Fedora" to "I was in the room when the term open source was coined"). But, most importantly, you consider yourself an active member of one or more open source communities. » Read more

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Gary Hamel: Reinventing the Technology of Human Accomplishment

Watch Gary Hamel, celebrated management thinker and author and co-founder of the Management Innovation eXchange (MIX), make the case for reinventing management for the 21st century. In this fast-paced, idea-packed, 15-minute video essay, Hamel paints a vivid picture of what it means to build organizations that are fundamentally fit for the future—resilient, inventive, inspiring and accountable.

"Modern” management is one of humanity’s most important inventions, Hamel argues. But it was developed more than a century ago to maximize standardization, specialization, hierarchy, control, and shareholder interests. While that model delivered an immense contribution to global prosperity, the values driving our most powerful institutions are fundamentally at odds with those of this age—zero-sum thinking, profit-obsession, power, conformance, control, hierarchy, and obedience don’t stand a chance against community, interdependence, freedom, flexibility, transparency, meritocracy, and self-determination. It’s time to radically rethink how we mobilize people and organize resources to productive ends. » Read more

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Seven counterintuitive truths for managers

How do you get customers to send bouquets to staff for great service (literally) yet cut costs at the same time? By discarding (almost) everything you think you know about management and doing the opposite.

Here are seven counterintuitive business truths, distilled from nine uplifting (how often can you use that term in connection with a management event?) success stories recounted at a Vanguard Leaders Summit last month—included among them, the MIX's M-Prize winner Owen Buckwell. » Read more

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Why Business is Brain-Dead--and How to Wake Up

Often, when I'm invited to speak to boardrooms, I start by gently saying: "Listen up folks. Business is brain-dead. Right now, even as we speak, your business is probably undergoing a slow, barely perceptible, but wholly pernicious brain death." I might take a custom-made, baby-soft $2000 loafer to the head and get muscled out of the room, but as I'm ushered through the cubefarm hinterlands I try to explain: "No, really. I don't say this for effect, it is literally true: business has a serious cognitive malfunction--an inability to process reality". » Read more

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A generational look at open management

Whether you're a newly appointed manager or a weathered veteran, one thing's for certain: when it comes to leading the workforce of the future, the times they are a-changin'. The ability (and willingness) to understand and adapt to the new paradigms of working will separate the good managers from the great managers, and both from the clueless ones. » 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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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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Are you an expert in building communities? Prove it.

Over the past few months, I've started moonlighting as a contributor on the Management Innovation Exchange (MIX), which we've featured regularly here on opensource.com. My posts on the MIX focus on how to enable communities of passion in and around organizations.
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We work in public

My conversation with our newest MIX Maverick Andrew McAfee yielded all kinds of bracing insight when it comes to how we set strategy, structure work, unleash talent, and measure success. But I haven’t been able to shake one idea in particular he threw out at the end of our conversation as a provocation.

First, we spent a lot of time on how the job of a leader changes in a world that is increasingly open, powered by social technologies, and morphing at warp speed. Andrew calls this world Enterprise 2.0. In this world, says Andrew, “If you want good things to happen, get out of the way. Let people interact and collaborate and communicate in the ways that are most natural to them. Then your job as the leader of the organization is to simply put in place the environment that lets them do that, encourage them to do that, and then harvest the good stuff that comes from all of their interactions.” » Read more

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