Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Hail to the Chief Node

Way back when I worked for a plc, those of us keen on adapting the business to the networked world faced a problem.

The biggest stakeholders in the business were not the staff or the bosses, they were the city institutions through whose hands ownership passed on a monthly, weekly and occasionally daily basis.

Image: tsevis via flickr /

Theirs was a mindset built on predictions based on on past performance. They understand and back incremental improvement.

"A little higher with your scissor kick please, but don't you dare try that Fosbury flop!"

So how to convince them that they needed to try a Fosbury flop?

Alan Moore and I mused on this and came up with an audacious plan to bring the then wannabe-democratic party nominee Barack Obama to address city leaders at londons mansion house on the subject of how he would become the next president of the united states through the power of the network; his use of social media to co-create an election victory with self-forming groups of purpose, sharing and passing on a message of vital use to them.

We figured that on his election (which we regarded as a given even then, yes I did tell anyone who would listen so) ought to convince any plc's shareholders that it was time to embrace the power of the network, to buy into, join with it and benefit from it.

Would have cost us a few quid

Just wanted to say thanks to Obama for saving us that time, trouble and money.

I'm sure in due course Obama will address the mansion house. More importantly he now has a platform to address the world: Hail to the Chief Node.

If any company, any organisation, any person remains unconvinced of the need to embrace the poetry and power of the network now, then I am sorry for your losses.

Check Obama's website, his Twitter account, his Youtube channel, the Facebook groups etc etc and stop wondering how he did it.

Instead ask how you can too.

1 comment:

  1. Great post David. Like you say, I hope that people see it for what it is - a victory for the power of community, not just the internet as a channel.

    By the way - have shortlisted your presso on 'The User is The Destination' as a Post of The Month.
    Would welcome any other nominations you have...


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