February 27th, 2009 | No Comments
At Convergence 2009, I heard a lot about technologies that connect different entities: physical with digital, humans with products, different functions within the product development cycle.
As Ping Fu pointed out in her keynote, technologies run in advance of social and cultural change. The big challenge: How do you get people to cooperate and share for the benefit of the greater whole?
Rus Emerick of Schneider-Electric points out that almost every company uses individual achievement as the basis of its personnel evaluations. As a teenager, Rus was told by his grandfather that he knew nothing until he shared knowledge. He’s taken that philosophy to Schneider-Electric, implementing DSSP throughout the company for annual savings of millions.
Sadly, most of us aren’t like Rus. We use knowledge like currency, keeping it to ourselves and meting it out grudgingly in small drips.
Companies need metrics to award knowledge spreading, and it can’t be competitive. Otherwise, we get into an “I share better than you” competition.
Maybe we can take a cue from the NBA. In an article in the NY Times magazine, Michael Lewis talks about non-traditional measures of performance used by the Houston Rockets to gauge the contributions of Shane Battier. By conventional statistical measures, Battier is an average player. By the Rockets’ measures, he’s an MVP candidate.
Are there measures out there to reward those who are exemplary in coming up with new ideas and spreading them throughout the organization? Send your comments here. I have a few good books to give away for the best ideas.