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Euan Semple
Works at helping organisations, and more importantly the people in them, get their heads around the web
Attended University of St Andrews
Lives in Great Missenden, Chiltern District, United Kingdom
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Euan Semple

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Latest edition of Shift just gone live. This one with our good friend +Thomas Vander Wal and great fun talking about tagging and taxonomies. Never thought I'd ever say that, but seriously, great fun. 

http://business-shift.com/podcast/2015/3/27/shift-episode-034-thomas-vander-wal
In this episode of shift we get to chat with Thomas Vander Wal, originator of the term folksonomy, about tagging, taxonomies, meaning, power, and the future that we are all hurtling towards. You can download the file directly to your hard drive from here You can also download and subscribe to the podcast in iTunes or RSS. 
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Therapeutic people.
I am always completely fascinated by human interaction. The way we can irritate each other, hurt each other and mean the absolute world to each other just by simply existing is a wonderful thing. Our conversations shape who we are and how we think, we boun ...
I am always completely fascinated by human interaction. The way we can irritate each other, hurt each other and mean the absolute world to each other just by simply existing is a wonderful thing. Our conversations shape who w...
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We've all got a volume control on mob rule

This is the title of a chapter in my book in which I suggest that we all get to choose on the internet which stories we share, which we choose to refute, which we ignore and which we elaborate on. When can now do this rapidly and in large numbers. 

Watching the surge of support for Jeremy Clarkson, the high levels of engagement in the Scottish referendum, or the bravery of The Arab Spring, we clearly have a powerful tool at our disposal. Whether the impact of any of those is good or bad depends very much on the perspective of the beholder but that their potency is a sign of things to come seems undeniable. 

A lot of what motivates me in my work is the belief that the more of us become active online, and learn to operate as a filter, consciously managing the memes that swirl around the internet and our collective awareness, the more likely we are to arrive at a good place. 

We will increasingly sit on a knife edge between the wisdom of the crowd and the madness of the mob. Each of us gets to decide moment by moment which. Exciting and scary at the same time. 
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Owning our conversations

I worked for twenty plus years for an organisation that industrialised story telling. In learning to passively consume content we sub-contracted our sense making to others. What excites me about the interwebs is that we get the chance to take that back. 

In [this post][1] William Buist considers the future for our dominant social media platforms and I responded to it by saying "Call me an ageing hippy but I’m still hopeful that we will eventually get tired of being “owned” and see more open platforms being thought of as social infrastructure. We need to lose the media bit of “'social media'".

[1]: https://abelard-uk.com/2015/03/the-changing-face-of-social-media/
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"What are you going to do when only stupid people will work for you?"

This was the question asked by a participant in one of my workshops when another member of the group was being bullish about banning social tools in his business. His attitude is common, trying to maintain control, clinging to an old world that is disappearing around him. Seeing a world of threat rather than a world of opportunity. 

There's no point struggling to maintain stability. Careers are already a thing of the past. A job for life a nostalgic memory. For some this is terrifying; for others it isn't even yet apparent. For the rest it is an exciting opportunity to use their energy and intelligence to shape their world and experience fun and vitality while doing so. 

We have at our disposal more resources than ever before to get smarter, faster, and do more with what we learn. It would be a shame to miss the opportunity...
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Have him in circles
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Euan Semple

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The day job

This week I have been involved in great events and been privileged to hear from amazing people doing really interesting things. They are an opportunity for people to get out of the office to learn about new ways of doing things and be inspired about how they might do things differently. 

But then they have to go back to the day job. Maybe they get ridiculed for acting differently or doing things differently. Maybe the mountain of stuff they have to deal with has got even bigger in their absence. Maybe they just feel overwhelmed at how different their organisation is from some of those they have heard about.

It is so important that they do something different, even if it is a tiny thing. Tiny steps repeated consistently are better than nothing. Thinking even slightly differently about your challenges is better than not thinking differently at all.

Every journey…
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Wish fulfilment?

I was reminded again over the weekend of the £25Bn pounds that were spent on the NHS patient records system - to deliver NOTHING. 

Something like 50 percent of IT projects fail. 

Many people in business now use their own devices and public internet platforms to connect with each other and get work done. 

And yet I still hear of IT departments throwing their weight around and saying no to everything with staggering hubris.

There are good folks in there trying to bring about change but the question [I posed on my blog][1] ten years ago is sadly still relevant...

"How much of the IT industry could be characterised as wide boys in cheap suits selling wish fulfilment to "out of their depth" execs?"

[1]: http://euansemple.com/theobvious/2005/3/24/just-wondering.html?rq=in%20cheap%20suits
.... how much of the IT industry could be characterised as wide boys in cheap suits selling wish fulfillment to "out of their depth" execs?
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Intricately entangled in a Gordian Knot..
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Worth remembering out there on the interwebs...

"In each of us, there’s a lot of softness, a lot of heart. Touching that soft spot has to be the starting place. This is what compassion is all about. When we stop blaming long enough to give ourselves an open space in which to feel our soft spot, it’s as if we’re reaching down to touch a large wound that lies right underneath the protective shell that blaming builds." - Pema Chödrön
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Shit happens

Businesses are terrified of the risk they perceive in social media. They fret about customers ganging up on them or of staff being indiscreet. 

Much of this fear is misplaced but it is in part driven by the mainstream media’s appetite for pouncing on them when they slip up. 

I am seeing more and more signs though of the public pushing back against sensationalism and bias in the media. Just today I heard that in France, headlines focussing on the French citizens killed in the Tunis museum attack and barely mentioning the other victims have been criticised online. 

I have also started to see people defending companies who may have made a mistake but don’t deserve the sensationalist headlines that appear in the press. 

These may be signs of hope…
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Patterns at Regent's Place
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Just published the latest edition of Shift - this time on the topic of conflict.

http://business-shift.com/podcast/2015/3/7/shift-episode-034-conflict
In this episode, recorded after "one of those weeks", we talk about conflict - how to handle it, what it means at work, and how we handle difference and dissent. You can download the file directly to your hard drive from here You can also download and subscribe to the podcast in iTunes or RSS. 
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Have him in circles
15,983 people
W. Amadeo Kronig's profile photo
Heming Leira's profile photo
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Ishan Prakash's profile photo
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Education
  • University of St Andrews
    Drinking, 1978 - 1982
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Gender
Male
Story
Tagline
Management consultant, speaker and author.
Introduction
help organisations, and more importantly the people in them, get their heads around the web.
Bragging rights
Author of Organizations Don't Tweet - People Do http://amzn.to/xRYEHs
Work
Occupation
Management consultant, speaker and author
Employment
  • helping organisations, and more importantly the people in them, get their heads around the web
    present
  • BBC
    1986 - 2006
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Currently
Great Missenden, Chiltern District, United Kingdom
Previously
Strathaven - St. Andrews - London
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