Archives January 2023

Information has no value until it is acted upon.

This is from our new book “Working Naked”, about visualisation of work (publishing this year in English and Vietnamese):


Visualisation is great, if you do something with it. Information has no value until it is acted upon. That is beyond the scope of this book, except to say that this concept is expressed in many different ways that all essentially mean the same thing:

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Blog posts for December 2022

My New Year’s Matariki

I don’t make fixed New Year’s Resolutions that I probably won’t reach, so much as set navigational stars to head for, what Teal Unicorn call our matariki. Here are my five work matariki for 2023.

Singing and dancing

Something profound has happened to how we think about knowledge work – “office work” dealing with intangibles – as a consequence of the pandemic.
I’m beginning to uncover pieces of the new paradigm.

Dehumanising the workplace

As someone who worked for a big American corporation for 16 years, I know we submit ourselves to all sorts of things once we are cognitively captured by the organisational culture.

Employee resource groups

No matter how we organise ourselves, we will always be in siloes one way or another. There will be organisational divisions. It’s important to connect people across those divisions as well. One way to do that is communities of practice , a k.a. guilds or chapters. Here’s another.

You don’t know until you do

It is easy with hindsight to explain why improvement interventions had an unexpected result, missed the mark, or did more harm than good, and yet organisations seem to launch into them with the confidence that they will work.

Three principles of managing change

Here are three brilliant principles of managing change from Eugenio Moliní on LinkedIn

Carve these above the doorway at work.

How technical should a manager be?

How technical should a manager be? Separate managing work from managing people (as we should).

Agile coaching

Agile coaching is a hot topic. It is in vogue in the IT world to heap derision on the whole profession of agile coaching. There may be a quality issue, but stop saying agile coaches need to be software developers.  The discussion is of interest to non-IT people too, so I share it here.

Open Enterprise Architecture

Enterprise Architecture isn’t my field. I did study Zachman decades ago (had a one-day training from the man himself!), but I haven’t done much.

I needed to summarise our ideas at Teal Unicorn in the context of architecture and this is what I came up with.

GPT is fake

Please read this Twitter thread to understand the danger of GPT, the AI content generator everyone is raving about. It’s not real information. It’s a simulation of information.


Get controls out of the way

Controls are essential to protect the organisation’s assets. But achieving velocity through quality requires that all “necessary non-value work” get out of the way of value work. Minimise controls: just enough to control risk, ensure compliance, and monitor performance, with the least possible impact on value work. Experiment with less or lighter control.

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