From “good” to “great”: collective intelligence at the service of a common objective
28th october, 2015. Teamwork and an entrepreneurial spirit are two of the factors that make the difference between a good company and a great company, according to Jim Collins in his bestseller on business management “From Good to Great”.
In his book the author speaks of the importance of so-called “Level 5 leaders”, who combine effort and humility in order to create a good team and listen to its members, without forgetting their own leadership and clear business vision.
Collins summarizes this axiom in a clarifying “put your best people on your biggest opportunities, not your biggest problems”, on the premise that business success is a result of “getting the right people on the bus” and knowing how to listen, because in a team everyone can make a contribution.
The concept of collective intelligence is taking off as a new form of business culture that pursues excellence, participation and the motivated implication of teams.
Psychologist Jerome Brumerbelieves that “human intelligence is not only an individual characteristic, but a common good”, which–for that very reason– “enriches any organization (social, corporate…) if it is matured and if the right tools are provided for its development”.
New technologies have made possible, at a low cost, the creation of new communication networks that are democratic, global and accessible, and enable the construction of collective intelligences.
How can we develop that potential scattered among different types of individuals and intelligences?
In another chapter of his book, Collins speaks of technology as a commodity that does not bring about business transformation or innovation, but does contribute to accelerate the journey to both these objectives.
Collective intelligence in a corporation may therefore be utilized through tools such as ideas social networks.
The ideas4all Clients Meeting has allowed us to analyze cases such as Nestlè’s with ideas4all Innovation Agora, where the development of a collective intelligence has brought about a culture of participation and innovation supported by results: 15 ideas from the platform have already been implemented to improve the way the company and its business works.
Further reading: Nestlè’s success story with ideas social networks.
On the other hand, critics of these digital models of participation speak of quantity rather than quality and of the “glorification of the ‘Like’”, a factor that can be avoided with the right rules of the game.
As we mentioned, Collins speaks of the importance of “getting the right people on the bus” as a starting point for the development of any business and, in this sense, an ideas social network can also help to select the best qualified team members.
But also extremely important in this transition from ‘good’ to ‘great’ is a management structure with good long-term vision, which after putting together the who (the team) is capable of selecting the what (the objective): what we are better at and what we need to do in order to be better.
Once the master guidelines are drawn, technology can be used as a transformative element that enables the achievement of objectives.
In this respect, ideas social networks have internal mechanisms (challenges, points…) that, apart from implicating teams, organically refine ideas (from ‘good’ to ‘great’) to achieve goals more quickly.
Are you a company? Request more information on ideas social networks here.