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English, Gestión e innovación, Proyectos, Vida

Blow your mind (sort of)

Talk about conflicting influences :-), how about mixing a NGO crusader with ex-GE «Neutron» Jack Welch?

Last year I had a bit of a shock when reading Hildy Gottlieb’s blog reflections about goals and means, and the way many organizations become focused on means and forget what their mission is. Actually, the shock came when I realised that it had happened to the organization I lead to a serious extent.

Then came this summer’s indigestion of Jack Welch podcasts and books. If I hadn’t shared so many management views, I probably would not have heeded his strategy hints… but I did.

The Macuarium organization is a queer beast. It has two firm goals: to serve as an experimental, learning environment in ebusiness and knowledge management… and be useful to Spanish-speaking Mac users through information, fostering mutual help and knowledge sharing.

In fact, we have been increasingly swallowed by the means: a complex forum system with a web portal, and the attending processes and relationships and non-goal-furthering complexities of technical support and finance. What would Hildy say?

Also, we are the dominant CoP for Mac-using creative professionals (aka knowledge workers), our forums gather over 80% of threads on our core topics. But that makes for a cozy view and little chance of evolution. Welch suggests (among other things) defining your market in a way that you have 10% or less. What’d he say?

With those two ideas at the back of our minds and a lot of sand to tread on, the Macuarium shareholders discussed, argued, proposed, discarded and envisioned for a whole summer month. We came back with a somewhat clearer view and an evolution strategy that looks like taking us into several new places, some of them commented here… and taking serious shape by the day.

This post is just to reccomend the process, and the catalysts :-). They remind me of that old tip: «Blow your mind – smoke gunpowder».


2 comentarios en “Blow your mind (sort of)

  1. Well with an intro like that, how could I NOT respond?

    Working backwards from the desired end results is always far more productive (and way more fun) than focusing on the means. And the reason is pretty simple – the means are where all our fears reside, and the end results is where we find our inspiration.

    So when we start with what’s making us crazy (means), it is hard to be productive. We bicker; everything has 7 reasons why we can’t do this or that. But when we start with what inspires us, it’s easier to figure out which means make the most sense.

    So what would Hildy say? (Boy I wish my kids would ask that!) Go for those end results! Aim at what success will look like and work backwards from there.

    And if you didn’t see it, my new favorite story about means trumping ends is here: http://hildygottlieb.com/2007/09/05/i-only-hurt-you-because-i-love-you/

    But don’t get too close or that one WILL blow your mind!


    Publicado por Hildy Gottlieb | septiembre 28, 2007, 2:35 am
  2. Hi Hildy,

    actually your bulletin got me to write this :-).

    Best regards,


    Publicado por Miguel | octubre 1, 2007, 1:35 pm

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