Disruptive Thinking

I was just interviewed for a co-worker’s clearance update. As the investigator read through the questions I was surprised to find myself thinking, “I am so screwed.” And that was a shock! I’ve had a security clearance for most of my adult life. I’m a card carrying conservative (fiscally anyhow.) But the questions are so out of phase with my recent experiences in a socially collaborative environment and my general laissez-faire life outlook, I was taken aback and started to question whether I was indeed a “good person.” Now what kind of crap is that? I am a good person, and I’m smart, and darn it, people like me. (apologies to Al Franken) The point is, I have value and because, for a short time, I didn’t see myself fitting into someone else’s box, I started to question that value. We should not do that.

I think we should move away from emphasizing “Web 2.0” It’s the people, the original computing genius combined with the ability to “interface” on levels we still cannot categorize. Good usually comes from it.

Engaging and influencing people is how we succeed. We all really know it, but we don’t want to putz with actually talking to another human face to face. We get too much instant feedback. It’s safer to interact from behind our computers. We can only be who we really are, if we don’t have a supervisor, parent, policeman looking over our shoulder, or friends looking askance at our shoes. The fact that they aren’t physically there doesn’t mean that we will be bad, it means that we will feel freer to poke a little bit at the boundaries and confines and ask why or why not or what if? We are free to learn and explore.

It’s Human 1.0. Before we are all grown up and aware of all the limitations. It’s laying on the grass seeing faerie castles in the clouds, it’s spinning until you can’t stand up, then doing it again, only stopping just a bit sooner and trying to run straight. It is original experimentation.

I think what “Web 2.0” does more than ever allow us to blend “who we are” with “what we do.” It lets us retain or regain Human 1.0 and bring that to the work table. It takes us to the next level where people are valued for the quality of their contributions and not boxed in by “tradition.” It also lets us explore history, now that we are old enough to appreciate that some things take longer to recover from and probably should be avoided. It lets us appreciate the traditions that have sprung from that cultural experience. It lets us jump out of the bed at 3 am inspired and run to our telework center to send off the solution to that tricky test problem (dressing optional.)

In a traditional world, I wouldn’t know about Mark’s child’s ball game, let alone smile when he reports a “win.” I would have been tossed out for blunt rants and questioning authority, even though I am not malicious…I want to make things better.

There are some real issues that need to be addressed…the bottom of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs must still be fulfilled and that will require value assessments and exchange of goods/services. Who is paying for me to think? What is a unit of “think?” A unit of “do?” What about a unit of “be?” How many units of do equal a bowl of cheerios?

In response to this, Ed asks “are we really anyone without a work structure? Could we survive as independent (away from our work structure) entities that sell units of “think” “do” and “be” to whomever is willing to pay for them?” I agreed with him in this is something to ponder over warm cookies and cold milk. (which probably cost a think, a do and a be…go ahead and go there, you know you want to.)

Leave a Comment


Leave a Reply