Leadership in a Wiki World: Leveraging Collective Knowledge To Make the Leap To Extraordinary Performance

Leadership in a Wiki World: Leveraging Collective Knowledge To Make the Leap To Extraordinary Performance

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  • ISBN13: 9781608444663
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Rod Collins is the owner of Wiki-Management, an innovative consulting company that helps forward thinking business leaders successfully manage complex change by leveraging the power of their collective knowledge. Discover more at www.wiki-management.com

“In the age of speed we live in, new rules emerge at a breakneck pace. As a leader, you can either be blindsided by these new rules or let Rod Collins’ book give you a welcome heads-up and head start!”
~ Vince Poscente, author of the NY Times Bestseller The Age of Speed

“Rod Collins has written an engaging and insightful book that clearly answers the question of how the principles of complexity theory can be practically applied to leading large organizations. Leadership in a Wiki World is a timely and highly readable guide that shows business leaders how they can use the rich reservoir of their collective knowledge to meet the challenges of an increasingly complex world.”
~ Lisa Kimball, President, Plexus Institute

“Leadership in a Wiki World provides tremendous insight into how to lead and manage complex, multipartner, large scale business enterprises. Rod Collins’ experience as one of the key leaders within the Blues and his accomplishments as the chief operating executive of the single largest employer health plan in the world prepared him well to offer the insights captured in this book. If you want to know what the future of management looks like, I strongly encourage you to read this book.”
~ Steven S. Martin, Chairman, Board of Managers of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Federal Employee Program, and President & CEO, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Nebraska

There’s a revolution brewing that is about to end the world of work as we know it. We are fast approaching a tipping point where new capacities for mass collaboration will completely redefine the work we do and the way we work. Technological innovations now make it possible for large numbers of people to work together without going through a central organization – and they can do it smarter, faster, and cheaper.

Discover the revolutionary business opportunities created by today’s unprecedented business realities and learn:
• Why a 19th century management model is unsustainable in a digital world
• How business leaders are resetting management practices to create smarter and faster companies
• How companies are gaining access to the most untapped free resource in every organization to catapult their business performance.

Leadership in a Wiki World is a practical guide to the principles and practices of wiki-management, the proven management solution for business leaders who understand that managing great change is only possible if we change how we manage.

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  1. Chetan Dhruve says:
    3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Why the conventional hierarchic model needs to die and be replaced by a new leadership model, October 22, 2010
    By 
    Chetan Dhruve
    (REAL NAME)
      

    This review is from: Leadership in a Wiki World: Leveraging Collective Knowledge To Make the Leap To Extraordinary Performance (Paperback)

    This is a terrific, insightful book.

    In this book, author Rod Collins flatly states that the command-and-control, hierarchic management model is obsolete, and the days of the leader-hero “taking charge” are over. Mr Collins offers rationales based on his real-world and hands-on experience of running a large, complex multi-billion dollar health insurance operation. The main reason the old model is dead is simply this: the world of business is getting incredibly complex, and the top-down hierarchic model cannot cope with all the complexity.

    One thing I really liked about the book is the author’s willingness to tell it like it is. For example, “When it comes to implementing the insights of the human relations movement, management’s efforts have been more about style than substance. Today’s managers may spend more time soliciting inputs from their workers, but at the end of the day, managers are still the bosses, the workers are still subordinates, and these professionals are still expected to do as they’re told.”

    Mr Collins notes that this “Do as your told” management style has its origins in the industrial age when mass production ruled, and managers were more educated than their workers. The absurdity is that today we are hired precisely because of our education and knowledge, yet managed as though we’re ignorant and clueless.

    Fundamentally, as Mr Collins says, “Nobody is smarter than everybody” – yet our management systems treat bosses as smarter than their subordinates. In this situation, the collective knowledge of the organization – so crucial to competitive advantage – is seen to rest with only a chosen few. This leads to knowledge being distorted or lost.

    In short, we’re managed by methods created for the era of mass production, when instead, we should be managed by new techniques in the era of mass collaboration. And you can’t have genuine mass collaboration without changing the underlying power structures in an organization.

    Hence, to change things, Mr Collins declares that the sovereignty of the supervisor must end, ie no more bosses. He states, “There is no place for stars and heroes in Digital Age businesses…..there are no bosses and there are no subordinates; there are only workers. And it’s the collective organization, not the leader, who is the star.”

    Often, this approach is misunderstood – both by managers and workers – that leadership is no longer required. Mr Collins explains that in fact, leadership will become even more important. It’s just that the nature of leadership will change. Mr Collins says, “The leader’s primary responsibility is no longer the content, but rather the context of work.”

    The book provides several real-world case studies, and practical methods that can be used to change how we work. Mr Collins also introduces the complexity sciences, which will become increasingly relevant as we progress into the 21st century.

    If you are truly serious about preparing your organization for an inevitably more complex future, you must buy this book.

    Chetan Dhruve
    Author, Why Your Boss is Programmed to be a Dictator

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  2. Robert Selden "Bob Selden, What To Do When Yo... says:
    1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    A book for any thinking manager, November 11, 2010
    By 

    This review is from: Leadership in a Wiki World: Leveraging Collective Knowledge To Make the Leap To Extraordinary Performance (Paperback)

    Leadership in a Wiki World is about knowledge – how it is shared, how it is used and who owns it. The underlying theme of the book is that collaboration is now driving, people, organisations and ultimately, the economy.

    It’s also about how organisations are structured and how they are managed. Collins cites three developments that have changed the way organisations and people do, and manage business today:
    - The social technology of the command-and-control organisation cannot keep pace with the speed of change in today’s faster moving markets.
    - The internet has created the unprecedented capacity for mass collaboration.
    - The ascendance of knowledge networks and the decline of facilities.

    Collins makes many good points about the changing nature of how organisations might best be structured. In particular, moving from hierarchical to process-driven, where the emphasis is on customer satisfaction rather than maximising shareholder value. He suggests that “the emergence of business processes as the new focus of work and the identification of organisational learning and mass collaboration” are critical core competencies managers need to develop.

    There are two points that some readers may not agree with about Leadership in a Wiki World. Firstly, in developing his argument, Collins gives mainly service type organisations as examples. Secondly, most of the examples given are US based companies. It may be that there are many other non-service companies outside of the US that have been doing what Collins suggests long before the internet (and particularly the social media revolution) took hold. For example, Nokia, Samsung, Tesco, Swatch are non-US companies that have been using the process-driven and collaboration models to build and develop their business, for some considerable time.

    I found the book a little dense, with some repetiveness (obviously to reinforce important points). There is so much good information here however, that the challenge will be to get managers, (and particularly today’s younger techno-savvy managers who want their information is short, sharp bites) to read the entire text. Noting this, the author has some good suggestions for reading the book, depending on one’s digital orientation – whether you are a “digital native” (born after 1975), “digital immigrant” (born before 1975, techno-savvy but reared in the hierarchical and mechanical thinking of the industrial age) or a “digital stranger” (also born before 1975 but who sees the computer as a sophisticated machine and the web as the world’s best reference library). A clever way to involve all readers.

    Having said that, this is a good book. Not only does it have many sound messages for today’s manager, there’s also some good practical “How to’s”, such as the Work Thru exercise (similar to processes mentioned in Marvin Weisbord’s “Productive Workplaces” – Jossey-Bass 1991). I would recommend this book to any thinking manager and to organisation OD people who are vested with the challenge of adapting their organisation’s structure to satisfy the needs of today’s educated (product/service) client.

    Bob Selden, author What To Do When You Become The Boss: How new managers become successful managers

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  3. Don Prentice says:
    1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Landmark Book for the Digital Age, September 6, 2010
    By 

    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: Leadership in a Wiki World: Leveraging Collective Knowledge To Make the Leap To Extraordinary Performance (Paperback)

    Leadership in a Wiki World by Rod Collins is a most important addition to the literature on our Digital Age. There are numerous books on dealing successfully with aspects of our new world that are valuable contributions to public knowledge. Mr. Collins has put together the fundamentals of the changes to our world and their implications for our management theory and practice in a clarifying way that has great merit on its own and that also gives increased understanding of the context for the other publications. Mr. Collin’s insights provide both a superior big picture context and useful applications for the daily exercise of management and operations. I consider this book to be a landmark publication for all dimensions of society seeking to find a more appropriate response to the unprecedented challenges of our Wiki Digital Age.
    ….. Don Prentice, founder of New Perspectives

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