- 10 innovations
- Open Innovation with Social Media
- Technology Hubs
- Startup Innovation
- Africa's Mobile Revolution
- Open Organisation
- Learning by Sharing
- Taking Down Barriers To Social innovation
- Impact in the Age of Context
- Internet of Things
- Study: Data for development
Discussion on Digital Society
Don't let your Company get in the Way of Building your Product
Having 100 percent of its employees work at 100 percent productivity is a dream come true for every company. No internal reporting, no lengthy meetings, no steering committees drain employees’ energy. Instead, they spend every hour of every day on their job: developing products and talking to clients. They spend their entire day being productive.
It’s a handful of tech startups that get closest to that vision. They operate without hierarchies. They don’t know organizational charts. They are boss-free. At companies like Github, which develops a framework for open software development, employees decide on their own from which location they want to work, which hours they would like to work and, more importantly, which projects they want to work on. “Don’t let your company get in the way of building your product” put it Zach Holman, a developer at Github, in a post on his personal blog. A handful of employees, usually the company founders, might have notional titles such as CEO, and take over duties such as acting as public spokesmen for the company. But internally, everyone is doing everything and nobody is telling others what to do and what not to do.
Whoever has an idea for an entirely new product or just a more efficient code section can step forward and just work on it. If others like the idea, they can join at any time.
“Welcome to Flatland” says the employee handbook of Valve, a game company and the developer of CounterStrike, one of the most popular online games.
About the Author
Frederik Richter has worked as a financial journalist since 2004. He has reported from more than 15 countries in the Middle East, Asia and Europe, focussing on the interplay of politics and business in emerging markets and particularly in the Arab world.
For several years, he worked as a Reuters correspondent in the Gulf where he wrote about investment and financial markets.
Having taken an interest in the innovation prowess of social media during that time, he is now based in Thailand as an independent journalist and editor.