Freelancing: A 6-Month Retrospective - Mike Rooney At the end of 2011 I quit my full-time job to pursue part-time freelancing in order to have more time and flexibility. It has now been 6 full months, so I’m writing this retrospective post in order to evaluate my progress and make improvements. Hopefully it will be useful or interesting to others! In short, I felt that given a finite lifespan, there were more fulfilling and enjoyable ways to spend some of my healthiest years than 40+ hour weeks in an office. More specifically, there were a few activities I wanted to spend more time doing: cooking, climbing, yoga, and Zen practice. In review, here are the numbers between then and now:
Why Occupy Has Faded Protesters at "Occupy Wall Street" camp, Liberty SquarePhoto Credit: Sarah Jaffe July 5, 2012 | Like this article? Join our email list: Stay up to date with the latest headlines via email. Microsoft’s Downfall: Inside the Executive E-mails and Cannibalistic Culture That Felled a Tech Giant Eichenwald’s conversations reveal that a management system known as “stack ranking”—a program that forces every unit to declare a certain percentage of employees as top performers, good performers, average, and poor—effectively crippled Microsoft’s ability to innovate. “Every current and former Microsoft employee I interviewed—every one—cited stack ranking as the most destructive process inside of Microsoft, something that drove out untold numbers of employees,” Eichenwald writes. “If you were on a team of 10 people, you walked in the first day knowing that, no matter how good everyone was, 2 people were going to get a great review, 7 were going to get mediocre reviews, and 1 was going to get a terrible review,” says a former software developer. “It leads to employees focusing on competing with each other rather than competing with other companies.” “I see Microsoft as technology’s answer to Sears,” said Kurt Massey, a former senior marketing manager.
What Doesn't Motivate Creativity Can Kill It - Teresa Amabile and Steve Kramer by Teresa Amabile and Steve Kramer | 9:49 AM April 25, 2012 Management is widely viewed as a foe of innovation. The thinking goes that too much management strangles innovation (just let a thousand flowers bloom!). But we have found a much more nuanced picture. You really can manage for innovation, but it starts by knowing what drives creativity in the people who generate and develop the new ideas that, when implemented, will become tomorrow’s innovations. Unfortunately, too many managers unintentionally kill innovation because they rely too heavily on carrots and sticks to motivate employees.
10 Startups to Watch in 2014 If you only focus on the multi-billion dollar valuations of young companies like Pinterest, Uber and Snapchat, you might assume 2013 has been a very good year for tech startups. In reality, it has been more of a bittersweet year. Many early-stage companies struggled to raise a Series A rounds of funding, a phenomenon commonly referred to as the "Series A Crunch," which for some meant to fight for their survival. Meanwhile, several later-stage companies like Fab and Rdio laid off large portions of their staff to rein in costs.
P2P Production and new institutional design * Essay: The political economy of information production in the Social Web: chances for reflection on our institutional design. Vasilis Kostakis. Contemporary Social Science. June 2012 Innovation Governance: Model and Scope Business innovation is a very vital ingredient in the performance of a business. It determines what kind of products or services a business gives the market, and how the clients respond to it. Innovation is also used to set a competitive pace within the industry where less innovative firms are rendered obsolete. This is to say that, innovation is at the core of organizational development. Life Lessons From Benjamin Franklin Benjamin Franklin was a man of action. Over his lifetime, his curiosity and passion fueled a diverse range of interests. He was a writer (often using a pseudonym), publisher, diplomat, inventor and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States.
Recent Startup Trends - Coding VC I spent 2013 as one of four partners at a seed stage fund with a strong data focus*. During that time, I had the privilege of talking in depth with hundreds of founders about the data-centric companies they were working on. Here are some of the high level trends that I observed among those startups, along with a few suggestions for anyone who is looking for startup ideas: Analytics is still a very hot area. Startups like Heap Analytics are rethinking the storage side while companies like Periscope are rethinking the querying side.
Review: A Democratic Approach to Sustainable Futures — A Workbook for Addressing the Global Problematique Thomas R. Flannagan, Kenneth C. Bausch Management Innovations For The Future Of Innovation The emergence of Open Innovation means, among other things, that innovation management will become more collaborative and that business model innovation will become as important as technological innovation. This author, who coined the term Open Innovation and literally wrote the book on it, has excellent advice for readers hose who study innovation often can be overwhelmed by the variety and speed at which clever new products and services come into the market.