FUNKENSPRUNG Heartbeat


#SiliconValley2009: Dave McMurtry Loomia and Kiva.org

FUNKENSPRUNG Silicon Valley discovery tour 2009 – day 1: The program for today finsihed with Dave McMurtry, Director, Co-Founder, Loomia and Kiva.org. He gave us detailed insight on his 2 ventures (one business oriented, one non profit). We talked a lot about the right setup of your team, the board and the funding rounds and what he regards as the key essential levers for starting and keeping a venture at speed.

He also shared his experiences from micro loand. He just arrived in SF from a 2 months customer deep dive in Lybia and the impact such micro loans can have on the people in this country. His service kiva.org is a very smart and effektive donation site engaging the donors with the entrepreneurs. pls check it out and start your own micro venture capital ventures!

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#SiliconValley2009: Swissnext

FUNKENSPRUNG Silicon Valley discovery tour 2009 – day 1: the future of diplomacy (as the Swiss Consulate titled this venture) is located in San Francisco and serves as a business/ innovation hub for swiss companies and US. companies. Actually it reminded me of what the ONE Smart Spaces back in 2003/ 2004 could have reached to (besides not be located in San Fran.) It calls itself not an „business incubator“ (they are not breeding) but more as an accelerator and „connecting the dots“. They offer open and closed events, they foster a well selected network of entrepreneurs, companies and VCs. For Swiss start ups they offer temporary offices and business services.

So what about Austria?

www.swissnex.org


Creating a Culture of Innovation

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W.L. Gore & Associates – we believe one of the outstanding companies in Management Innovation. Watch CEO Terri Kelly’s inspiring talk at the MIT Sloan School of Management.

By Bernhard Hoetzl


Six ways to make Web 2.0 work

Web 2.0 tools present a vast array of opportunities—for companies that know how to use them.

An interesting study by McKinsey Quarterly.

Innovation Lab: Contact us to learn about our experiences with Web 2.0 tools such as Yammer.com.

By Bernhard Hoetzl


13 Fragen zu Innovation & Querdenken

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  1. Wie wird eine Innovationskultur aufgebaut, die nachhaltig einen Wettbewerbsvorteil liefert?
  2. Wie richtet man das Unternehmen in Richtung „Enterprise 2.0“ aus und nützt die Power von Netzwerken?
  3. Wie kann man den Mitarbeitern mehr Eigenverantwortung zugestehen, indem man weniger managt, ohne dabei auf Disziplin und Zielstrebigkeit zu verzichten?
  4. Wie baut man Teams auf, dessen Angehörige ein ausgeprägtes Gemeinschaftsgefühl empfinden und alle am gleichen Strang ziehen?
  5. Wie stellt das Unternehmen eine implementierte und in der DNA verankerte Open Innovation Philosophie sicher?
  6. Wie kann speziell in Turnaround und Change Projekten brachliegendes Kreativpotential nutzbringend gefördert werden?
  7. Wie sichert man sich gegen die Gefahren von Selbstüberschätzung und Verleugnung ab?
  8. Wie sorgt man für einen stetigen Fluss neuer strategischer Optionen?
  9. Wie beschleunigt man die Umverteilung der Ressourcen von bestehenden Projekten zu neuen Initiativen?
  10. Wie werden sämtliche Mitarbeiter des Unternehmens als Innovatoren eingebunden und wie schafft man in Zeiten der Veränderung und harten Wettbewerbssituation Zeit für Innovationen?
  11. Wie gewährleistet man, dass die veralteten, aber unerschütterlichen Vorstellungen der Manager die Innovationen nicht ersticken (Stichwort Kreativitätsappartheit)?
  12. Wie wird Querdenken professionalisiert?
  13. Wie entwickelt man ein wirksames System zur Identifikation von „disruptive technologies & business models“?

(Quelle: G. Hamel (2007), Das Ende des Management, FUNKENSPRUNG)


„Das Ende des Managements: Unternehmensführung im 21. Jahrhundert“ (Gary Hamel)

By Bernhard Hoetzl


Facebook, MySpace, Twitter & Co – Trenderscheinung oder Revolution – auch in der Businesswelt?

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Snapshot 1:

„Carrotmob is a network of consumers who buy products in order to reward businesses who are making the most socially responsible decisions. In a boycott, everyone loses. In a Carrotmob, everyone wins.

(Quote: http://www.bestfriendsforlife.net)

In San Francisco breitet sich ein neues Phänomen aus. Basierend auf Social Networks und Web 2.0 organisieren sich Hauseigentümer als Aktivisten für „Green Energy Campaigns“ in Form von „Buying Clubs“. Unter dem Community Brand „One Block Off the Grid“, 1BOG.org, wird versucht, Wohnblock für Wohnblock auf Solarenergie umzustellen (Watch Video). Mitglieder der Community erhalten Rabbatte auf Solar Panels, die durch die Community ausgehandelt wurden. Aktivisten stürmen organisiert Shops, die als Gewinner einer Wahl zum naturfreundlichsten Geschäft ermittelt wurden.

Virgance, das Unternehmen, das hinter diesen Kampagnen steht, orient seine Erfolgsstratgie an der Art und Weise, wie Obama Barack während der Wahl zum US-Präsidenten seine Aktivisten motiviert hat: Man nehme ein Netzwerk an begeisterten Freiwilligen („boots on the ground“), eine „activism presence in Facebook“, ein Team von bezahlten Bloggern, die die Kampagne promoten und trendige YouTube Videos die im Schneeballsystem verbreitet werden – fertig ist die „Campaign 2.0“, die klassiche Kampagnen schnell alt aussehen lässt. Geschindigkeit und Anzahl der Stimmen sind matchentscheidend – das ist nichts Neues, in der Form aber schon.

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Snapshot 2:

Im Herbst 2008 trennten sich Virgin Atlantic und British Airways von mehreren Mitarbeitern, welche sich über Sicherheitsmängel in den eigenen Reihen lustig machten, sich über Passagiere oder ihren Job beschwerten und Facebook und Twitter als Kommunikationskanäle für ihre Meldungen nutzen. Aufgrund der Skalierungseffekte von Web 2.0-Tools in der Kommunikation, eine Meldung erreicht in Sekunden tausende Empfänger und kann sich dann blitzschnell weiter ausbreiten, sehen sich Unternehmen mit einer neuen Bedrohung konfrontiert. Geschindigkeit und Anzahl der Stimmen können wiederum machentscheidend sein. Im Falle der beiden Fluglinien erfuhr die Corporate Communication Verantwortung erst selbst aus den Medien. Kommunikationsexperten raten dazu, Online Communication Guidelines für Mitarbeiter zu überarbeiten und Aktivitäten in Social Networks selbst stärker zu überwachen um nicht dann reagieren zu müssen, wenn der Schaden schon ins unermäßliche gestiegen ist.

Stellen Facebook, MySpace, Twitter & Co eine Gefahr für traditionell organiserte Unternehmen dar? Sind junge, Net-Gener-Unternehmen mit ihren disruptive Business Models und Arbeitsweisen schon im Rückspiegel, bereits auf der Überholspur oder sogar schon wieder beim Einordnen?

Sind Facebook, MySpace, Twitter & Co nur kurzfristige Trenderscheinungen und werden sie die nächsten Jahre selber überleben?

Wie kann man Social Networks als Chance für das eigene Unternehmen nutzen? Welche Erfahrungen haben Sie gemacht?

Diskutieren Sie mit uns Ihre Gedanken und Erfahrungen!

Posted by Bernhard Hoetzl


Enterprise 2.0 – Twitter & co to revolutionize business practice

A couple of days ago we started to think about introducing a management information system, some kind of a „cockpit“ tool, which provides management with news about projects, sales, and all other information on what’s going on in the company.

But then we visioned the picture of just another ERP tool, hardly fed with information from employees and therefore not very accurate. Another „off-the-shelf“ tool that needs to be individualized to our company needs, gulping thousands of euros and bearing the same project risks of never being fully implemented as so many ERP tools before. Another complex tool that only 10% of features are really used.

STOP: we are an INNOVATION company – we HAVE to find a better way. From my private experience with Twitter I know that it is a great tool to stay in touch with my folks – after receiving up to 20 short messages from a friend who lives in Amsterdam per day, I get a very good background noise and sense on what that person is up to, how she feels, even a clear picture of how the surrounding environment looks like. Why not use a communication tool like Twitter in a company context.

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After some research we discovered Yammer, a spin-off from Geni, founded by former executives and early employees of PayPal, eGroups, eBay, and Tribe. Yammer Inc. offers a free Yammer tool, basically an enterprise version of Twitter with some incredible features:

  • Brief, but frequent updates on what everybody is working on – n : n
  • Asking questions and posting new ideas in your virtual office – retrieving feedback instantly
  • Tagging option which allows search functionality on specific topics
  • Tag clouds and sorting functionality which allows analysis of the companies communication habits such as ‚who is most communicative?‘ ‚What are people talking about most?‘
  • Building of a strong knowledge base for later investigations in certain topics.
  • Yammer provides a web, desktop, iPhone, Blackberry, SMS and Instant Messaging interface – so users get the information onto their fingertips

We are going to introduce Yammer in our company – it serves best for groups up to 20-30 people. We will ask everybody to at least once a day post a short status update on what happened during the last couple hours and what the person is working on or planning to work on today. It will be exciting to see how this is going to help internal communication.

Yammer is a winner of the TechCrunch50 Conference 2008 – watch them explaining their service and going live.

By Bernhard Hoetzl


USA 2008: Google Visit

In our recent research we were focusing on companies that have successfully implemented management innovation- one of these companies is google.

We were spending one day at the googleplex in Mountain View and had the chance to deep dive into the culture, leadership approach and human capital management…

Google’s founders have often stated that the company is not serious about anything but search. They built a company around the idea that work should be challenging and the challenge should be fun. To that end, Google’s culture is unlike any in corporate America (and the rest of the world), and it’s not because of the ubiquitous lava lamps and large rubber balls, or the fact that the company’s chef used to cook for the Grateful Dead. In the same way Google puts users first when it comes to our online service, Google Inc. puts employees first when it comes to daily life in our Googleplex headquarters. There is an emphasis on team achievements and pride in individual accomplishments that contribute to the company’s overall success. Ideas are traded, tested and put into practice with an alacrity that can be dizzying. Meetings that would take hours elsewhere are frequently little more than a conversation in line for lunch and few walls separate those who write the code from those who write the checks. This highly communicative environment fosters a productivity and camaraderie fueled by the realization that millions of people rely on Google results. Give the proper tools to a group of people who like to make a difference, and they will.

Ten things Google has found to be true

We are impressed and we see what an organization can reach if it fully supports the management innovation approach!

by Florian M. Stieger


USA 2008: meeting Ram

Helmut introduced us to Ram Shriram, so we had the rare opportunity to meet Ram:

Ram Shriram started Sherpalo in January, 2000, with the goal of applying his wealth of operating and company building experience to promising early stage ventures. Ram is a founding board member of Google Inc., 247customer.com and Frontline Wireless. Ram also serves on the boards of Plaxo, Zazzle.com, PodShow and Prana Studios. Prior to founding Sherpalo, Ram served as an officer of Amazon.com working for Jeff Bezos, founder & CEO. Ram came to Amazon.com in August, 1998, when Amazon acquired Junglee, an online comparison shopping firm of which Ram was president. Before Junglee and Amazon, Ram was an early member of the Netscape executive team.

We had the chance to get deep insights about his views about business, about the way the silicon valley built its own DNA and what he regards as key success factors for entrepreneurs. He believes that successful companies are based on their ability to board the best people and keep them – besides the right products and smart organization. Only A-people will board other A-people – once you break this rule you are going to be stuck with B- or C-people – or even worse: D-people!

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by Florian M. Stieger


USA Discovery tour 2008

back again from our trip to the west coast full with impressions and new informations. We spent 3 weeks mainly in California, but also Utah, Arizona and Nevada.

Of course we focused on the silicon valley for the search for companies advanced in management innovation.

I will put together some of our highlights in the blog in the next few days..

by Florian Stieger

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