It's All About the Data

It's All About the Data
It's All About the Data

Monday, December 16, 2013

What I learned from Ayn Rand




In the business world, words such as collaboration, synergy, and crowdsourcing are used to describe the current business philosophy of 'the sum of the parts is greater than the whole'.  This approach promotes a work environment where the team shares ideas and works for a more complete solution.  So how could anyone be against that?

First, I learn new concepts, ideas, and strategies from my workmates, my clients, and from corporate management.  I thank each of them for making me better, stronger, and more agile.

My concern is that the following team traits can happen:
  • In some work environments there can be givers and takers.  Givers grow with new information, stretch to be better, and share that new knowledge with others.  Takers sit back and let others do the heavy lifting while learning to mimic what others have learned.
  • Also, some are doers and some are revisers.  Doers risk the pioneering process (stretching for new ideas and strategies), while revisers can sit back and say "well the new solution is not quite good enough".
  • Givers and Doers are 'all in'.  See my blog - http://connectingthedata.blogspot.com/2013/10/are-you-all-in-or-just-surviving.html about being 'all in'.

WHAT I LEARNED FROM AYN RAND
An interesting movie to watch is the final courtroom scene in "The Fountainhead".  Ayn Rand (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayn_Rand), author of the "The Fountainhead" and "Atlas Shrugged" believed that  success should be evaluated on what a person creates, not what is stolen from others.  See Howard Roark's speech at http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xtymi7_the-fountainhead-1949-gary-cooper-famous-courtroom-speech_shortfilms.

So, what is my point ? 
  1. If you learned something new, give credit where credit is due.
  2. If you have found value in a company, its products, and its people - demonstrate that value through loyalty to that company/product/team.
  3. There is nothing free in this world.  So if knowledge is passed to you, expect to pay for learning that new information.

It was suggested to me recently that in the new millennium, all information will be free to all without additional payment, in fact, intellectual property should be shared freely, so 'the whole' will benefit.  I reject this notion.  What is the motivation for new intellectual property, if there is no monetary gain?

Be a Doer and a Giver.  Support with your pocketbook those companies who provide you with new information and new ideas.


David Haynes, PMP, is Director of Consulting at Ideate, Inc. (www.ideateinc.com).  David's experience is in providing companies with business process analysis and change implementation.  @dhaynestech.

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