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Thursday, June 14, 2012

Open Source – It's Not Just Software, Baby!


Initially, open source was an approach to developing software among coders, which was like Spanky, Darla, and the Our Gang kids “puttin' on a show.” Everyone contributed what they had (sharing resources) and did what they knew (collaborate) – and the show was always a success.

The open source approach is a philosophy, a culture, a means of tapping the doer's knowledge and experience without the complication of burdensome overhead.

It can be as simple as taking the path of helping a chronically tardy employee discover the effect of his lateness on coworkers, then giving him an alarm clock to acknowledge the commitment of being there on time.

In this environment, an audiophile can develop a hobby of finding old high-end equipment into a viable business by working with a warehouser and an eBay seller – a 3-person collaboration which is a poster child for the Makers Economy.

As agencies move further into government as a platform (GAAP) with information and answers easily available on-line, and reliable channels for filing required documents, the experienced 'live person' is available to work with the smaller percentage of unusual cases instead of reading to the general caller from the regs and procedures.

Open source leadership is recognizing the value of the knowledge and experience which resides throughout the organization and finding ways of applying it to get results.

The New Normal is the resulting change from traditional methods to address issues brought about by open source thinking. It's like having the doers and managers smiling at a problem and saying in unison “We've got an app for that!”

Business as usual is unusual – are you evolving or just waiting for it to return to normal?
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