Amongst the excitement of digital, product scalability risks are being forgotten

Digital excitement continues to gather speed. Ground breaking offerings across IaaS, PaaS, SaaS are being released in rapid succession with opportunities to optimise the existing and break into the new. Capitalising on these hyper-specialised offerings is viewed as one of the cornerstones of achieving the Digital Holy Grail, with benefits across customer experience, product growth and global customer reach. However, there is good evidence that a careful product strategy needs alignment with product. There is a growing trend of poor practices and conflating product scalability with the cloud infrastructure scalability. Although products can be flexibly scaled it does not mean they will be without strong intentional design. In reality a huge challenge is maintaining strong discipline and tight synchronisation between sales, product and engineering in order to maintain a system that keeps cost per unit low.

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Transformation and the net you see the world through

Transformation is one of those overused words that now mean everything and nothing at the same time. The term is more often borrowed to fit the place of an event that is usually less visionary. On reality TV we have the personality transformation, the body transformation, the style transformation. But beyond the glorious 5 minute reveal, how much of the long, grinding process of true change are shown? The wheels of change move far too slowly for a 30 minute time slot.

The Reality TV version in an organisation can mean: building a digital app, new role titles, or a paragraph in the annual report.

But for “Digital Transformation” to be successful teams need to opt for the vision that Eric Reis details in The Startup Way.

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School of Life - Emotional Intelligence Workshop

The School of Life uses a unique combination of lenses from which we can understand the world. Originally founded by author Alain De Botton, the school applied ideas taken from ideas from areas such as philosophy, psychology and culture to provide education in the form of books, courses and other media. Check out their YouTube channel for an introduction.

I recently attended an Emotional Intelligence workshop in London that covers 3 of the education modules: How to Develop Self Knowledge, How to Be Sociable & The Meaning of Life. This was a really worthwhile day and that is already paying dividends. I’ve just started reading the accompanying book An Emotional Education The experience of the day was fantastic with a great group of students and knowledgable teacher.

I’ve written up some notes that form as memory aids for some of the interesting ideas of the day. These are primarily intended to be a reminder for those familiar with the content. But it may be enough to get the general idea of the types of things covered.

Most of the theory, concepts are freely online at The Book of Life. E.g. Self Knowledge & Sociability.

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Optimising your life: unleashing new consumer health tech

Consumer demands are not separated by segment. The growing disparity between our overall advancements and our access to healthcare is becoming frustratingly clear. In the UK, health investment is only responsive rather than preventative. The National Health Services (NHS) are high performing in critical situations, but failing to address every leading that lead to an emergency.

Why are we not focusing our best minds and tools at the problems at hand? Where is technology promised that would create a cost-effective, accessible, preventative approach?

Throughout the years I’ve followed some of the trends of “biohacking” over the last 10 years. Some of the smartest systems thinkers have attempted to combine their unique perspective with health experts and research to invent new options.

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How to redefine Control: a defining behaviour in achieving organisational agility

Throughout my consulting experience I have spent countless hours influencing Enterprise Agility in the trenches. I consistently find evidence that project success is strongly related to level of team autonomy. Simply, the capacity for a Product Team to fluidly connect with the multiple “actors”[1] & focus on progressing towards outcomes is a key to project success.

Team empowerment is easily understood in theory but difficult to adopt by traditional organisations. In this mode, Management needs a new set of skills such to focus on activities such as:

  • Defining & communication the overall vision.
  • Setting the strategy and relationship to the business models.
  • Streamlining operational activities.

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