Lions, Tiger and Bears: Silly thoughts on CSR

I was reading the Fin Review this morning and came across their CEO Poll, which asked some of Australia’s largest companies CEO’s questions about the economy, the challenges for the year and their opinions on climate change.

Foxtel’s Kim Williams climate answer:”Foxtel’s climate change motto is: switch off, reduce, reuse, recycle, ride, walk, car pool, bus it or train it. We aim to achieve carbon neutrality and an active approach to energy reduction in relevant technologies in the course of the next couple of years. We have a real road-map and action plan.

“Sure you do……which is why your ‘motto’ rips off pretty much every other green solution tag line their is. If you stand for everything, you stand for nothing.

Clearly, Foxtel don’t get it. My experience is that companies that do ‘get CSR’ (if that is even possible) don’t try to cover all bases. Their language is simple, their aims reasonable, their achievements real and their PR constructive. The whole CSR thing is still very grounded in spin and rhetoric – which is why we are all experiencing a fair dose of green wash at the moment. I just wish companies would keep their mouth closed until their organisational brains had engaged the issue. Their is nothing wrong with working towards a position on climate change. Their is something wrong with not doing the thinking in the first place.

If Foxtel actually did the thinking, they could come up with some kick-arse ideas to help move the country further down the climate-change road. If you were Kim Williams, what would you do? I’ll post some thoughts in 3 days or so…what are your ideas?

Bla bla bla…Knowledge Economy

Stumbled into this one today when searching for innovation unit’s at big companies. I reckon most would be disappointed. Just try the Google search “insert big company name Innovation Unit” and view the disappointment for yourself. Is there someone out there actually IN an innovation unit, can you please say hi – I’d love to hear what sort of stuff your up to. I just wish you’d publish more of it 🙂

Anyways, enough of the rant…on to the Knowledge Economy. 

The Knowledge Frontier, a document produced by the Westpac Innovation Unit, the Society for Knowledge Economics, was released in June of this year. Have a read of it here

I like the premise, and the fact that they wrote it to stimulate discussions about the future of the creative class and talent in general. I thought I contribute my two cents worth on some of the issues the paper raised.

1) Investing in Talented Individuals: This is an interesting one. In the paper, they suggest that soon there will be ‘venture capital/ASX’ style investing in talented individuals likley to assume positions of leadership and value within society. These people will gain investment, to be used for education (?) and then repay their investors with a proportion of their earnings. Sounds a little too much like human trafficking if you ask me – I’m not sure how those high-potential people will go knowing that a percentage of their wage would go to an ‘investor’ for a period…Then again, what else is HECS?

 John and Peter, my Series A investors

2) Mum, mum look at me: Should we start paying for attention rather than time? Or, more to the point, paying an employee/contractor for the amount and type of stuff they focus on, rather than dependant on their role. I know personally, I’ve had a few jobs now, all in similar roles but the stuff I actually did in those roles varied quite a bit. I’m not sure how you pay for attention – but I think a movement closer to a Brand me world, where people charge by contract, and earn their salt dependant on the skills they bring, is a move in the right direction.

3) Facebook killed email: Not yet…but sooner rather than later we will move away from email systems for internal comms. I know I hardly check it anymore – most emails are internal anyways and many people are currently using Facebook to interact around the office rather than their trusty outlook/lotus notes. I think some middle ground will be the best solution – and knowing larger companies, they will pay someone else to provide a tailored solution rather than bolt on to an existing ‘retail’ solution such as facebook. I’m thinking the corporate internal communications tool looks like Salesforce + Facebook.

                             salesforce.jpg + facebook.jpg = New Internal Communications

4) IP, therefor, I am: Yes, IP is huge. We need to drastically rethink the way we protect out intellectual output, or suffer being ripped off by larger players with deeper pockets. For small, more mobile, more ‘atomised’ workers there is no larger issue. If you can do something cool, you need to feel safe about discussing it in blogs, forums and – yes – facebook. This kind of protection is really only afforded to you if what you do is a) extremely general but YOU do it better due to personality/natural intuition or…more likely b) the competitive advantage you have over others is more tangible – such as an education/degree/PhD in the field you specialise in or a more specific/re-usable method which you may have perfected.

Interesting times. I noted the report only covers till 2015, which is a pretty short time-frame given some of the possibilities raised here. Things look like moving fast, whatever the direction. What are your thoughts?

Dopplr = Interesting concept, but not for hobbits

So, Ross very kindly invited me to Dopplr the other day, which allowed me to have a little looksey at what the concept was for the new venture. I quickly came to the conclusion that I like the concept, and think it has the potential to further let people gain access to an organizations staff and brand. Basically, it allows you to log where you are going to be in the world, and at what times. If you have other friends who travel quite a bit, it allows you to compare schedules and hook up with them in foreign places.

Very cool…but not for hobbits such as myself.

It looks like they have opened up the API, so hopefully we’ll begin to see some orgs use it to map their travelers and possibly give people the chance to further interact with the people normally ‘behind the curtain.’ Or, Imagine being able to follow your new pair of shoes or T-Shirt around the world as it was made…

Early thoughts. Any more? If you want an invite, leave me a comment or fling me an email and I’ll hook you up with the good stuff 😉

Dopplr – is anyone part of the top 100?


Check out this post this morning from the folks at Dopplr. I’m not cool enough to be invited to anything like this, and to be honest, I am no global traveler (would like to be, but still working on it). I am more interested in seeing what the marketing/PR potential is for a Web 2.0 product like Dopplr, especially to better connect supporters of different brands and companies together when they are out and about around the world. It’s the Twitter principal, only global.

Not really sure what’s going on with the product, other than it is yet another, more niche, social network – aimed this time at Global Trekkers and their friends. I would love to have a looksy – is anyone employed by the list of 100 companies and if so can you sign up and give me a blow-by-blow of what the bloody thing is!!!

I got this screen shot from flickr…can anyone do better?

Documents so far..think free or something else?

I thought I might open this one up…I had an email from Ross (so far, commenter #1!) outlining that whilst the site was alright, Scribd might be a better and more social, web2.0 option for sharing docs. Looking at their site, they seem to have better intentions, namely creating the worlds largest open source library of docs (very google!).

Does anyone know of any other sites out there that can log and store docs, and provide easy access for people following links?