Noodle VI: New from the Unorthodox Exit Strategy Department—Acquisition by an Asian Firm

New Exit Strategy for Mature Manufacturers—Acquisition by Asian Firms shows how process excellence can inject new vitality into ailing manufacturers.

New Exit Strategy for Mature Manufacturers—Acquisition by Asian FirmsPicture this: you are the CEO of a venerable manufacturer that has been besieged by price pressure, increased imports and high capital costs. Revenue has been barely edging up, and profits have been negative three of the last five years. You have had to lay off a significant portion of manufacturing personnel, many of whom had been with you more than a generation.Your ship is still taking on water despite best efforts, and you do not know where to turn.

This was precisely the situation of several U.S. firms that took the unusual route of selling themselves to Indian firms that turned the companies around very quickly by applying sophisticated process and management expertise. In many cases, local employment increased because the companies became much more competitive. Here are two examples:


Noodle V: Geography 3.0, What It Is and What It Means

Geography 3.0, What It Is and What It Means predicts a new synthesis in the Knowledge Economy—fast forward to the past—Plus, the fire

Geography 3.0, What It Is and What It MeansNoodles are largely driven by intuition and holistic mental doodling, and this one has been simmering a long time*. I believe that there is profound meaning in virtual and literal “mobility,” and I’ll explore its significance in terms geography and human relationships. Geography has always had a profound impact on how humans have lived and the organizations in which we have lived, and when its meaning shifts, our lives are transformed. This is of paramount importance because human relationships are currently transitioning from geography-based to interest-based. Many governments and businesses harbor business rules that assume geography-based relationships, and, unless they appreciate the shift to interest-based relationships, they will experience disruption’s spin cycle. Lose a turn. Don’t pass go ,^)

Before exploring how these things will unfold in Part II, let’s review three geographies and four economies here in Part I…


Noodle IV: Web 2.0 Pureplays vs. Enterprise Vendors: A Real Battle?

Web 2.0 Pureplays vs. Enterprise Vendors: A Real Battle compares the value propositions of Web 2.0 pureplays and traditional vendors.

Web 2.0 Pureplays vs. Enterprise Vendors: A Real Battle

Dennis Howlett, writing in the Irregular Enterprise on 19 March, made the case that enterprise IT just didn’t get social networking and start-ups were going to make some serious hay by bypassing IT and selling right into the business. He had also included a YouTube video in which CIOs commented on the question, “Is Enterprise 2.0 hype or happening?” which provided some light-hearted snippets about a profound subject. There was some valuable information in the post, but I found that it was approaching the issue from within the old paradigm (“battle on two fronts”), and therefore largely left money of the table. I’ll peel the onion here, so get ready to well up.


Noodle III: Bank Panic in Second Life Prompts Battlefield Promotion of Regulators

Bank Panic in Second Life Prompts Battlefield Promotion of Regulators reveals interesting parallels between physical and virtual worlds—it’s real money, after all.

Bank Panic in Second Life Prompts Battlefield Promotion of Regulators

“What? I can’t go to the grocery store! My bank’s automated teller machine refuses to dispense cash, and I’m planning a big cook-out tonight!” What’s an avatar to do?

It turns out that an inworld bank failure this summer cost residents about $750,000 USD and led to a run on Second Life banks, which eventually precipitated intervention by the highest authority available, the virtual world’s creator, Linden Labs. But the root cause may well have been LL’s earlier intervention in the economy by banning gambling on the site.


Noodle II: Disrupting the Intractable Delight of the Automobile

Disrupting the Automobile explores how several ventures are changing the rules of an intractable industry.

Disrupting the Automobile

The automobile is a personal manifestation of the ultimate promise of the Industrial Economy—that physical power is essentially free—because it enables people to move quickly and easily. People just love cars because it is immensely satisfying to glide effortlessly (traffic notwithstanding ,^) from one place to another with a high degree of individual freedom.

However, as 2007 draws to a close, autos’ current reliance on fossil fuels makes it increasingly obvious that we need to change the rules. First, new wealth in emerging markets is dramatically increasing auto ownership and its concomitant demand for oil. Increased demand and uncertain supply will undoubtedly prove unsustainable in the medium term. Second, and even more daunting, is the carbon/climate change problem, which is far more life-changing in the long term. Petroleum and coal are the largest contributors to man-made carbon emissions.


Noodle I: Mashing up Edison and Weinberger

Mashing up Edison and Weinberger wires together two thinkers that usually exist in different worlds, and reveals key facets of Knowledge Economy disruption.

Mashing up Edison and Weinberger

By the way, Noodles represent a new kind of post, bits of thought that are unstructured and relatively brief. Many won’t even be split into “extended” articles. They are partially inspired by twitter.

Yesterday I heard David Weinberger (one of the Cluetrain authors; his new book is Everything is Miscellaneous) talk at Big Frontier, and the big insight I took away doesn’t sound like much but, peel the onion, and it’s quite profound. Knowledge is inherently social. We vet our thoughts by sharing them with other people. Interaction helps us to refine thoughts and coalesce them into knowledge by knocking off the rough edges, and we co-design knowledge by collaborating.