Blog Post

We need "Managers 2.0"

Posted to Gurteen Knowledge-Log by David Gurteen on 20 January 2008



We need "Managers 2.0"
WeblogGurteen Knowledge Log
Knowledge LetterAppears in the Gurteen Knowledge Letter issue: 91
Posted DateSunday 20 January 2008 09:08 GMT
Posted ByDavid Gurteen
CategoriesBusiness Management
PeopleGary Hamel

In one of my recent IBM KM Blueprint Workshops I was talking about KM 2.0, Enterprise 2.0 and the need for Management 2.0, when one of the participants chirped in that these ideas were all well and good but would never take root as long as we still had "Managers 1.0" which of course brought a chuckle of approval from everyone in the room.

And then this afternoon, I started to read Gary Hamels new book - The Future of Management. In it, in the chapter on "Forging Management 2.0" he says this.
Why exactly, is the Internet so adaptable, innovative and engaging? Because ...
  • Everyone has a voice.
  • The tools of creativity are widely distributed.
  • Its easy and cheap to experiment.
  • Capability counts for more than credentials and titles.
  • Commitment is voluntary.
  • Power is granted from below.
  • Authority is fluid and contingent on value-added.
  • The only hierarchies are "natural" hierarchies.
  • Communities are self-defining. Individuals are richly empowered with information.
  • Just about everything is decentralized.
  • Ideas compete on an equal footing.
  • It's easy for buyers and sellers to find each other.
  • Resources are free to follow opportunities.
  • Decisions are peer-based.
This may not be a detailed design spec for a 21st-century management system, but I doubt it's far off. Argue with me if you like, but I'm willing to bet that Management 2.0 is going to look a lot like Web 2.0
But what will "Managers 2.0 look like I wonder? And how might we update the 1.0 versions - if at all? In a Knowledge Cafe I ran in Croatia a few years ago the participants all agreed that the biggest barrier to knowledge sharing in their organizations was the outdated mindset of their senior managers and when asked how they might change that - they thought the only way was to "Wait for them to retire or die!" as these managers had grown up in the Communist era and they thought were incapable of change!

If you are interested in Knowledge Management, the Knowledge Café or the role of conversation in organizational life then you my be interested in this online book I am writing on Conversational Leadership
David Gurteen

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