Jacob Morgan: Working Out Loud
Can collaboration lead to the fancy donut shop?
We’ve all known people who narrate their way through the day. Whether choosing today’s outfit or cooking or driving, these people say what they do as they do it. What they say includes the choices of the moment.
Such narration could drive you mad.
Unless you cared.
Say you were in the car and the narrator/driver mumbled something about turning left at the light. But you knew the fancy donut shop was to the right. So you suggested going right at the light. The narrator/driver turns right and, Behold!
“Hey—there’s the fancy donut shop we heard about. Should we stop in and get a dozen for the team?” you ask (innocently).
What if we heard about work details we cared about in real-time? But not the kind of hearing that entails being pulled into a conference room so the boss can blather on about goals and objectives. I’m talking about the kind of hearing where your genius colleague one cubicle over shares a “Eureka” about the message your team is crafting. Or—more likely—when your colleague in Scotland answers your informal text message from the U.S. with a game-changing insight. An insight that has the power to order your work for the next two hours.
Being present with each other in our work has the power to delight our working selves. As we toss out ideas and questions amidst the ordinary banter, brand new stuff happens. It’s the stuff that can only happen between people in conversation. It’s not the stuff some boss orders you to do.
I just ordered a copy of The Future of Work by Jacob Morgan based solely on the articulation of “working out loud” from this author interview on the Kinship enterprise blog. I’ve not yet read the book (did I mention I just ordered it?) but I firmly agree with the notion that the future of work entails some configuration of people wanting to work with a given organization rather than having to. “Get to” versus “have to” makes a huge difference to the motivation and energy with which we approach our work. I’ve argued for a LEED-like certification for workplaces that sustain the human spirit, and I think that is on the radar screen of job seekers today.
“Now let’s get back to that bakery,” he said, as he pocketed his car keys.
Image credit: Kirk Livingston