The Connected Company
from the we're-all-connected-now dept
Newsweek is running one of its special reports looking at how the “connected company” is thriving in today’s business market – suggesting that if you aren’t a “connected company” (to your workers, your customers, your suppliers), you just aren’t going to make it. The intro article points out that dumb companies look at connectivity issues and ask “how can it save me money” which is only half of the equation. The real issue is to look at both the cost and the benefit side of the equation to realize what the real potential is. The article also brings up one of my favorite examples: how WiFi completely changes the nature of an office space. Companies installed WiFi access points because they thought it was cheaper than running ethernet cable. It was only then they realized that it also changes the nature of workspaces, of meetings, and how employees can communicate. The report includes a bunch of articles about how different businesses have benefited from being “connected” – from making donuts to investment banking to shipping packages to designing cars.
Comments on “The Connected Company”
A few years ago, Levi Strauss jeans co. based in San Francisco tried an “enlightened” open management technique by which all employees were given a say. This caused the decision making process within the company to grind to a halt, leading to things like “back-to-school” products being produced 47 days after school began.
The “connected company” may cause some superficial improvements, but I wonder about its implications on the decision making process. If everyone knows everything, will it not cause the company to sink into a politicized quagmire of unruly employees?