Monday, May 17, 2010

Freeranging Chapter 2: The Science

This is the synopsis for chapter two lifted directly from the book proposal. I'm currently working on this chapter-- it's been much tougher to write than I anticipated. It's hard to take things directly from research and make them interesting and also relevant. I'm trying...

Chapter 2: The Science

Just as Taylor's Scientific Principles of Management changed the culture of the 20th century, there is new science to support a different way of working for the 21st Century. How do we optimize our working environments to support creativity? This chapter will discuss the science of freeranging. In particular recent scientific advances in these areas will be detailed. These advances will be contrasted with specific principles of Taylorism, and its modern day descendant Sixth Sigma. It will illustrate how the management practices from the last century are harming ideation and creative work. Each example from the science will be accompanied by testimonials from freerangers describing how they work, and detailing how their experiences are supported by the science.

  • Creativity and Innovation - open innovation
  • The biological basis of work-- circadian rhythms and working the way nature intended
  • Social network analysis-- what sociology and anthropology tells us about our connectedness
  • Multitasking-- how it promotes ideation
  • Working in the flow-- people's abilities to adapt and make sense of massive amounts of information
  • Complex Adaptive Systems theory-- work environments optimized to deal with complex and chaotic problems

As before, your thoughts and ideas are most welcome.

1 comment:

Peg Boyles said...

Sideways thoughts:

I wonder if your subject deserves a written format that differs as dramatically from standard linear narrative as freeranging differs from Taylorism.

Also thinking about about ways that "stories" differ from "testimonials." Stories/anecdotes help bring complex, implicit knowledge alive, transforming it into working knowledge.

Steve Denning and John Seely Brown, among others, have written extensively about the value of organizational storytelling.

I love this quote from Andy Goodman's Free-Range Thinking newsletter: Even if you have reams of evidence on your side, remember: numbers numb, jargon jars, and nobody ever marched on Washington because of a pie chart. If you want to connect with your audience, tell them a story.