We believe that wisdom is everywhere, you just have to know where and how to look for it. The best place to start is inside your business - the wisdom you need is in your team, your department, your division and in your whole company. Why look elsewhere, when all you need to know, you already know?
Are Your People Wise?
Use the sliders to give your assessment of the statements below:
Enterprise Wisdom was the first service developed by ActiveInspire. The service allows organisations to tap into the tacit knowledge and inherent wisdom of their workforce through the use of proven techniques such as the Delphi method, anonymity, story-telling and group evaluation. The process has been used on cases ranging from corporate strategy renewal for multi-national corporates to the creation of innovative community plans for many local communities across Finland. The strength of Enterprise Wisdom is the ease, speed and accuracy with which very complex and qualitative business issues can be interpreted and presented.
Wisdom of Crowds
The Wisdom of Crowds: Why the Many Are Smarter Than the Few and How Collective Wisdom Shapes Business, Economies, Societies and Nations, first published in 2004, is a book written by James Surowiecki about the aggregation of information in groups, resulting in decisions that, he argues, are often better than could have been made by any single member of the group.
Surowiecki breaks down the advantages he sees in disorganized decisions into three main types, which he classifies as:
Cognition - Market judgment, which he argues can be much faster, more reliable, and less subject to political forces than the deliberations of experts, or expert committees.
Coordination - Coordination of behavior includes optimizing the utilization of a popular bar and not colliding in moving traffic flows.
Cooperation - How groups of people can form networks of trust without a central system controlling their behavior or directly enforcing their compliance.
Not all crowds are wise. Consider, for example, mobs or crazed investors in a stock market bubble. According to Surowiecki, these key criteria separate wise crowds from irrational ones:
Diversity of opinion - Each person should have private information even if it's just an eccentric interpretation of the known facts.
Independence - People's opinions aren't determined by the opinions of those around them.
Decentralisation - People are able to specialize and draw on local knowledge.
Aggregation - Some mechanism exists for turning private judgments into a collective decision.
Enterprise Wisdom applies the Wisdom of Crowds thinking to create more accurate answers to BIG questions.
Level 5 Leadership
Jim Collins, already established as one of the most influential management consultants, further established his credibility with the wildly popular Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap...and Others Don’t, originally published in 2001. The book went on to be one of the bestsellers in the genre, and it is now widely regarded as a modern classic of management theory.
Collins explains the process of identifying and further explicating the unique factors and variables that differentiate good and great companies. One of the most significant differences, he asserts, is the quality and nature of leadership in the firm. Collins goes on to identify "Level 5 leadership" as a common characteristic of the great companies assessed in the study. This type of leadership forms the top level of a 5-level hierarchy that ranges from merely competent supervision to strategic executive decision-making.
By further studying the behaviors and attitudes of so-called Level 5 leaders, Collins found that many of those classified in this group displayed an unusual mix of intense determination and profound humility. These leaders often have a long-term personal sense of investment in the company and its success, often cultivated through a career-spanning climb up the company’s ranks. The personal ego and individual financial gain are not as important as the long-term benefit of the team and the company to true Level 5 leaders. As such, Collins asserts that the much-touted trend of bringing in a celebrity CEO to turn around a flailing firm is usually not conducive to fostering the transition from Good to Great.
Our experience tells us that Level 5 leaders and those that wish to be Level 5 implicitly understand
Effects of Anonymity
Anonymity may reduce the accountability one perceives to have for their actions, and removes the impact these actions might otherwise have on their reputation.
In conversational settings, anonymity may allow people to reveal personal history and feelings without fear of later embarrassment. Electronic conversational media can provide physical isolation, in addition to anonymity. This prevents physical retaliation for remarks, and prevents negative or taboo behavior or discussion from tarnishing the reputation of the speaker. This can be beneficial when discussing very private matters, or taboo subjects or expressing views or revealing facts which may put someone in physical, financial, or legal danger (such as illegal activity, or unpopular or outlawed political views).
With few perceived negative consequences, anonymous or semi-anonymous forums often provide a soapbox for disruptive conversational behavior. Relative anonymity is often enjoyed in large crowds. Different people have different psychological and philosophical reactions to this development, especially as a modern phenomenon. This anonymity is an important factor in crowd psychology.
Enterprise Wisdom is based on anonymous free text feedback that allows the brutal facts of an organisations situation to be uncovered and brought to the agenda.
Delphi is based on well-researched principles and provides forecasts that are more accurate than those from unstructured groups. It is a systematic interactive forecasting method for obtaining forecasts from a panel of independent experts. The carefully selected experts answer questionnaires in two or more rounds. After each round, a facilitator provides an anonymous summary of the experts’ forecasts from the previous round as well as the reasons they provided for their judgments. Thus, participants are encouraged to revise their earlier answers in light of the replies of other members of the group. It is believed that during this process the range of the answers will decrease and the group will converge towards the "correct" answer.
Usually all participants maintain anonymity. Their identity is not revealed even after the completion of the final report. This stops them from dominating others in the process using their authority or personality, frees them to some extent from their personal biases, minimizes the "bandwagon effect" or "halo effect", allows them to freely express their opinions, encourages open critique and admitting errors by revising earlier judgments.
The Delphi Method has been enhanced by ActiveInspire to form the core of our Enterprise Wisdom process.
What are Weak Signals?
A Weak Signal is defined as:
an idea or trend that will affect how we do business, what business we do, and the environment in which we will work
new and surprising from the signal receiver's vantage point (although others may already perceive it)
sometimes difficult to track down amid other noise and signals
a threat or opportunity to your organisation
often scoffed at by people who "know"
usually has a substantial lag time before it will mature and become mainstream
therefore represents an opportunity to learn, grow and evolve.
ActiveInspire can help you to discover and use weak signals to boost the profitability and success of your organisation.