Distributed knowledge pool to the frontlines
The most successful business especially from a customer perspective are those that make information available to all personnel (within reason – eg HR information) because any one person can respond to a customer situation – and more importantly resolve it. Continental Airlines when it restructured after the second bankruptcy under Gordon Bethune (From Worst to First) was so heavily controlled with rules and regulations, neither customers nor employees could get answers. Hidden information breeds suspicion and distrust. One of Bethunes’s early moves after the restructuring was to hold a big bonfire and burn all the rules books – then told the front line employees to do what is right to resolve customer challenges – the empowerment made for better employee relations and was the first major airline to actually go out of its way to inform customers of what was happening improving customer relations significantly. The availability of information AND the empowerment of employees made continental one of the best to fly.
I believe that we do not need a new form of analysis. We need to support the human intellect in dealing with business and informational issues (volume). We need to get off our proverbial butts in IT and IT management and deliver knowledge making capabilities to all business users. As we have stated throughout this treatise, we need to surround the human intellect with the best knowledge that computers can derive to enable decisioning. We can no longer restrict information from people. We should never write another report not write an application that fixes data into a rigid structure. We need to forget that storage is costly – it isn’t. We need to enable the information within a business or organization. Information about the business is the greatest asset a company has – let’s let it lose.
Extended workforce, extended enterprise
© Trevelyan Group LLC 2012