Peter Crosby

New study shows what really makes people more collaborative.

thumbs-up Back in the 16th Century, Sir Francis Bacon (arguably) coined the now-famous Latin quip: “Scientia potentia est” (i.e., “Knowledge is power”). And while the phrase can have a very noble interpretation, it’s more often a justification for withholding information to gain an advantage over others.

For centuries, this approach was very effective against external enemies. But when this kind of “information hoarding” is used against people within a single organization or business — that is, people ostensibly on the same side— it can have far-ranging and negative repercussions for everyone involved.

Cooperation isn’t just for kindergarteners.

Restricting the free flow of information isolates people and teams, cutting off communications, fostering complacency, and destroying trust. (continued…)

Peter Crosby

KM system or wine cellar? The declining value of stored knowledge.

Wine Cellar

Most people believe that wine improves with age. Not surprisingly, they store it in dark, cool wine-cellars for long periods of time to “allow the tannins to soften and mellow” or some such thing. But, in reality, only the top 5% of red wines benefit from aging.

Most wines — the kind that normal humans can afford — are designed to be best enjoyed when relatively fresh, say, within 6 months to a year of purchase (look on the bottle).

Similarly, company knowledge has a “best used by” date, too. When expertise is stored in disparate databases for long periods of time, it quickly loses its relevance, accessibility, and in the process, its value to the company. (continued…)

Leandro Perez

Why corporate email is bad for your business, and how to escape it.

Business background with drawn ideas. Email concept

Regardless of what you call it — email overload, email fatigue, inbox clutter, or just plain email noise — corporate email is out of control. And if email is still the primary communication and collaboration tool in your organization, then your employees aren’t being as productive or innovative as they could be.

Here are 3 huge problems with email:

1.) Doing everything in email makes people dumb.

Undoubtedly, your employees are already drowning in a sea of CC’s, reply-to-alls, and endless email chains. Not to mention spam. Lots and lots of spam. It’s annoying, sure, but how bad is it really? (continued…)

Peter Crosby

How to bring everything you need for business travel and still pack light.

Airline travelers and passengers rush through the terminal to their flights with their baggage and l

Thanks to globalization, travel has become a big part of doing business. Unfortunately, increasing airport security and decreasing on-board storage is making travel more unpleasant. To help you out, we’ve created a list of tips to make business travel more tolerable.

Four tips for better business travel.

1.) Avoid flying Coach 

  • Seriously, don’t do it. It’s worse than you remember. Pay for the upgrade yourself if you have to.

2.) Pack your bag efficiently

  • Put socks inside shoes
  • Pack shoes first, inside shoe bags
  • Pack heaviest clothes next
  • Roll up shirts and pack in gaps
  • Fill other gaps with underwear
  • Double-bag toiletries to prevent leaks

3.) Only bring the hardware you need

  • SmartPhone/Tablet
  • Power convertors
  • Device chargers
  • Noise-canceling headphones
  • Those dongle thingies

4.) Bring all your business apps

That’s it, you’re all set.

(continued…)
Peter Crosby

The critical difference between being busy and being productive.

Scoreboard

Since the adoption of the 40-hour work week, most workers have been expected to put in eight hours of work a day. But that time-based benchmark misses the point of why people are employed in the first place.

Work isn’t just all about working.

In his Inc.com article, Getting Things Done: It’s Not the Same as Being Busy, Paul B. Brown clarifies the mistaken virtue of hard work using tips garnered from John Wooden, a UCLA Basketball coach. Wooden points out that a good day shouldn’t be one when you were busy — a good day is when you accomplished something. (continued…)

Peter Crosby

5 telltale signs you need an Enterprise Social Network and how to get started.

You need an ESN
Is your business doing as well as it could be? Is your current technology really working as well as you think? Are your employees still hampered with a 20th Century workspace? If you’re not sure, then the answers to those questions are probably No.

A lot has changed technologically in recent years, and keeping up is a big part of staying competitive. Luckily, you can upgrade your current technology with an Enterprise Social Networking platform. Easily and quickly bring your employees into the modern era — you don’t even need to rip-and-replace your current systems.

Yet how can you be sure your company really needs an ESN platform? (continued…)

Peter Crosby

A simple test to tell if your HR department is needlessly wasting money.

Every year — often at the request of corporate HR managers —  an estimated 2 million people take the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator test. It’s reported that 89 of the Fortune 100 still use it to determine the personality “types” of current and future employees so they can be assigned appropriate training and responsibilities.

Okay, so here’s the test: Are you giving your employees the Myers-Briggs test? If you answered Yes, then you’re wasting money. And here’s why.

When a scientific test isn’t exactly scientific.

Back in 1921, Carl Jung suggested that humans broke down into several distinct personality types (based on his own personal observations). (continued…)

Peter Crosby

Here’s why you should stop trying to predict the future of your business.

Joi Ito Who wouldn’t want to know what the future holds? Especially in business, where inventing the Next Big Thing could mean market-share domination for decades.

Yet predicting the future is all but impossible (unless the Next Big Thing you come up with is a time machine). Despite the best efforts of psychics, astrologers, and scientists, nothing has ever consistently worked — crystal balls and studying the past are no more effective than a blindfolded monkey throwing darts. In short, you have absolutely no hope of predicting the future.

On the bright side, neither does anyone else. In fact, when it comes to determining the future, it’s a pretty level playing field.  (continued…)

Peter Crosby

How to succeed in business without being an obnoxious blowhard.

Obnoxious Blowhard

A lot of business advice in recent years centered on people branding themselves to get ahead. The Internet, they argue, offers everyone the same opportunity to “promote themselves as well as celebrities and large corporations, even without a multi-million dollar marketing budget.

That’s all well and good, but what about those who’d rather do less branding and just do a good job instead? What if those people could get promotions and succeed in their career without having to toot their own horn 24/7?

A recent book from David Zweig suggests that it’s entirely possible. Invisibles: The Power of Anonymous Work in an Age of Relentless Self-Promotion profiles successful individuals who succeeded without always showing off. (continued…)

Peter Crosby

Four things every business must have to create a modern digital workspace.

Manager Working In The Office

Often lauded as the starting point of people’s day, typical corporate intranets have been perpetually disappointing, never really living up to businesses’ expectations. Newer social intranets — while somewhat better — are just as often homogeneous, monolithic software stacks locked into one vendor’s view of the world.

So how do companies provide the kind of modern workspace that will increase employee efficiency and productivity? The following are 4 minimum tenets of a modern, effective enterprise social networking platform:

1. An open, agnostic architecture.

Illustration Of A Manager Working In The OfficeEven in 2014, there are still companies pushing a “their way or the highway” business model.  (continued…)