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Gregory Esau
Smart Swarming The Future of Organization
Smart Swarming The Future of Organization

Gregory's posts

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NorPacWest As An Innovation Hub?
Yes Please!

This is the best thing to pop in in my feeds in weeks.

“Our ultimate goal is to establish the Pacific Northwest as a world leader in responsible social innovation through data science,” Ono said. “We Hope to establish our universities as a permanent hub for applied research projects that have directly positive effects on society.”

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Uber's Leather Boys

I Uber is still a frat house for boys. Yeah, this is the type of outfit we want to partner with cities for the future of urban auto transportation. 

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I'm Too Full of Subjective Biases to Review You
Fortunately, There's a Better Way

I rediscovered this piece via the sales wunderkind, +Mike Kunkle and one of his (always) excellent posts.
The reason I like Mike's stuff so much, aside from his deep understanding of sales, is he understands also that sales has to part of a much bigger puzzle, a much bigger orchestra that all together has to be cohesive and highly functional. Otherwise, all sales efforts fall flat in the long run.

The fabbo piece on performance management from +Harvard Business Review reflects that sort of holistic perspective.

“Although it is implicitly assumed that the ratings measure the performance of the ratee, most of what is being measured by the ratings is the unique rating tendencies of the rater. Thus ratings reveal more about the rater than they do about the ratee.” This gave us pause. We wanted to understand performance at the individual level, and we knew that the person in the best position to judge it was the immediate team leader. But how could we capture a team leader’s view of performance without running afoul of what the researchers termed “idiosyncratic rater effects”?

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BIG Ideas
Fifty of Em

A fun enough compilation of predictions, trends, ideas and the like that might define the coming year.

Via +Jeffrey J Davis from over on +LinkedIn

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I always find these useful. 

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The Five Principles
That Will Drive Organizational Evolution

Back at the height of the days when GLIA was a thing, we talked about these a lot.
+John Foster +Jeff Jockisch +CJ Dulberger
+Gideon Rosenblatt, you might find this of interest as well.
Nothing new to any of us, other than now seeing the primacy being placed within business academia and consulting. 

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The Great Transformation
Intellectual Underpinnings Edition

I've long admired J. Bradford DeLong as an economist who better understood than most the big picture landscape. For +strategy+business he has selected three economic books that he thinks best frames our current reality.
We've beaten the drum here since joining G+ that the industrial economy has...well, lost steam. These three books underscore that theme.

There's is a lot of hope that what +Kevin Kelly would call the "new economy" (revisited in his latest work, "The Inevitable") will provide the backbone for our new economic landscape, and to a degree that is, well, inevitable.
However, if we were to dig deeper into the realities of that optimism, this 'new economy' is creating a wealth that winds up in much fewer hands than that of the industrial economy.

Policy is currently too mired, to wrapped up in fixing outdated economic models. Business is too narrowly focused (and this in itself is logical enough from the micro-economic perspective) on wrenching the last of the profitable growth from that old economy.

Where does this leave us? For government, business and society itself, we are all at the entrance to the valley of death, between the mountains of prosperity past, and the ranges of prosperity future.
We have two basic paths. One is to work collectively to build the bridges needed to traverse the 'valley of death', the second is a go it alone migration, where there will be far more losers than winners.

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Separating the Hype
From Reality

I knew blockchain jumped the shark when Don Tapscott wrote a book about it, and boarded the hype-train.
It's not the next big thing. It is a thing that will support other actual big things.

Blockchains are overhyped. There, I said it. From Sibos to Money20/20 to cover stories of The Economist and Euromoney, everyone seems to be climbing aboard the blockchain wagon. And no doubt like others in the space, we’re seeing a rapidly increasing number of companies building proofs of concept on our platform and/or asking for our help.

As a young startup, you’d think we’d be over the moon. Surely now is the time to raise a ton of money and build that high performance next generation blockchain platform we’ve already designed. What on earth are we waiting for?

I’ll tell you what. We’re waiting to gain a clearer understanding of where blockchains genuinely add value in enterprise IT. You see, a large proportion of these incoming projects have nothing to do with blockchains at all. Here’s how it plays out. Big company hears that blockchains are the next big thing. Big company finds some people internally who are interested in the subject. Big company gives them a budget and tells them to go do something blockchainy. Soon enough they come knocking on our door, waving dollar bills, asking us to help them think up a use case. Say what now?

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The Art Of The Silicon Valley Con
Elizabeth Holmes Edition

How a sociopathic obsessive conned billions from investors with nothing more than a flawed concept. Far from a visionary, the woman was, and is, a con artist.
Google Ventures, however, were onto her scam.

Holmes subsequently raised $6 million in funding, the first of almost $700 million that would follow. Money often comes with strings attached in Silicon Valley, but even by its byzantine terms, Holmes’s were unusual. She took the money on the condition that she would not divulge to investors how her technology actually worked, and that she had final say and control over every aspect of her company. This surreptitiousness scared off some investors. When Google Ventures, which focuses more than 40 percent of its investments on medical technology, tried to perform due diligence on Theranos to weigh an investment, Theranos never responded. Eventually, Google Ventures sent a venture capitalist to a Theranos Walgreens Wellness Center to take the revolutionary pinprick blood test. As the V.C. sat in a chair and had several large vials of blood drawn from his arm, far more than a pinprick, it became apparent that something was amiss with Theranos’s promise.

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