Saturday, September 27, 2003

Talking in Public

One of the most useful things about blogging is the public nature of the discussion. Anyone with web access can drop in and comment; as such, learning happens more quickly.

So it goes this week. Earlier this week, I commented on earlier blog by Jeff Angus. Jeff wrote me privately, explaining his point further. He then published the substance of that letter in a subsequent blog.

Is this just a bunch of blather by geeks playing with their computers? Some would say so. But, cynics aside, what is going on? Two crucial things strike me:

  • Jeff clarified his excellent point, which was that the only choice a manager has to do more with the same or the same with less...never more with less. Check out the very instructive pseudocode he wrote for this process in his post.
  • I can clarify my main point which was not about "more with less" at all; yet that wasn't clear in my blog. My point was about making a habit of scrutinizing assumptions whenever an apparent conflict arises.
See what happens in a public discussion? This is the verbal equivalent of visual management in a lean environment. Just as we make metrics and processes very visible to any passerby, so we should make our discussions public. The size of that "public" will obviously matters need to stay in the company, not on the web. Conceptual issues like this can happen in a wider setting. And we all benefit.

Thanks, Jeff, for your excellent insight. I hope this is helpful to all of us. Feel free to forward to a friend. Email me

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