2008-07-30

"Reality Mining"

Clive Thompson in Wired:
"Almost every time he analyzes a group, Waber discovers that the super-connector — the crucial person who routes news among team members — isn't the manager. 'The manager is almost always peripheral,' Waber says. 'It's some random guy.' And that person is usually overworked and overstressed. He isn't given enough support to fulfill his role, because nobody in the firm knows he's doing it in the first place. If you study the org chart, the higher-ups are in control. But if you study reality, those same managers barely know what's going on."
This is so true it hurts, and echoes my experience. Alas.

5 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing! That was a really fascinating piece. I wonder, especially given the article's focus on - slash paralleling with - social networking sites, how this would compare to the power dynamics, say, 20 years ago.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I've heard of this before, with the superconnector role being called "social facilitator". It makes sense because getting people to talk to each other is the main function of the role, but it seems like graph theory terminology's on the rise now. :)

    As a side note, did you know you can get inline comment editor now, so people never have to go to comment.g? It's the best thing we've done in my tenure so far -- you should totally go to settings and enable it.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Indeed the false perception that senior management have much if anything to do with the end outcome the ground floor workers achieve is one that continues to perpetuate itself over the ages.

    This is strengthened by false economies of paper work and process such as the over kill of Health and Safety, Cultural appropriatenes and Political Correctness all of which give them pulipts to make noise from to distract from the reality that they know less than they should.


    Madness

    ReplyDelete
  4. Reality mining is a really interesting research´s topic.
    this is a link where you can find a complete article of Benjamin Waber about this topic:

    http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1073342

    ReplyDelete