- Digital Media
- digital strategy
- digital media marketing
- middle east
- Nadine Najla
- Nadine Abou-Elias
- public relations
Connected to the Real World?
I received this image from a friend a while ago when we were both sitting in a very boring lecture where nobody seemed to pay attention to what was going on. And looking at the image distracted me even more and made me think: What went wrong there? Did the speaker even notice that? Attendees glued to their smartphone screens but not to his slides, and definitely not his presentation.
What was missing was the connection to the real world, between speaker, audience and what the value of the information could be in our daily lives. Establishing this connection is something that is more important for businesses in all industries than ever before.
If you are looking at your screen all day you might forget that your actual audience is human. They are out there and they do not want pixels but the solution to a real life problem.I seriously believe that knowing your audience and connecting with it emotionally means everything. Danny Brown commented in a thought-provoking blogpost that we are the “connection generation” - and he is damn right about that. Is the product you are building only a bunch of pixels?
Think about it.
Who’s the Boss, Anyway?
Can a workforce be innovative if the environment does not encourage new perspectives, opposing points of view or radically different approaches to status quo? Do employees thrive in a workplace that doesn’t empower them to participate?
Can the work environment actually push leaders with dreams of enabling social prosperity, into managers and executives who lead by enforcing a climate of compliance (typically yielding high turnover and limited loyalty)? Do quarterly reports, earning expectations, and other short-term measures distract us from our vision?
I grapple with these questions thinking of the future companies that are going to be created here at Seeqnce, as the team strives to accelerate innovation. Right now, we are going over more than 250 applicants for the 2012 Seeqnce Accelerator Program, and in a couple of months, we will have 8 resident startups.
Who defines the culture of an organization? Is it the leadership of an organization… or is it the employees? As we look at today’s more agile and innovative organizations, we find traditional roles of leaders and employees are becoming less distinct.
Perhaps these blurred hierarchies are a reflection of today’s marketplace, where customers co-produce the goods they consume. Buyers and sellers are interchangeable on marketplace platforms like eBay and Amazon; readers are becoming writers on news sites and the blogosphere; moviegoers are creating their own films and asking to post them on Cinemoz. Today’s economy calls for co-creation of value.
In the context of a global professional services organization such as Seeqnce, which I’ve seen emphasizes relationships in the creation of value, what kind of shift is desirable between employees and their seniors? How can people work together to co-create value for the organization, the clients, and each other?
I have found certain guiding principles to be essential in creating a successful work environment, where our people and our leaders not only co-exist and collaborate, but co-create value in new ways:
I think startups will benefit from this the most.
1. Share the vision
Leaders and founders must articulate their vision and agenda — uniting the whole organization in pursuit of it. To determine your alignment with the values of your organization ask yourself, what really matters to me? What do I stand for? Do my work activities represent my values to my family and friends? Both founders and employees need to be inspired and motivated by this shared vision.
2 . Accept that you don’t have all the answers
To do the right thing, you don’t have to be right. A true leader knows he or she doesn’t have all the answers, and seeks and considers other points of view. In highly competitive work environments, where employees are rewarded for having the “right” answers, we need to step out of our comfort zones to offer our own thinking and be open to all viewpoints — ultimately discovering the best possible solution.
3. Give feedback. Up, down and sideways
If you cultivate an innovative mindset or culture, you are continually trying new approaches… and learning as you go. It is particularly important in organizations where creativity and innovative thinking are encouraged, to provide continual feedback, up to your boss, down to your staff, and sideways to your peers. Annual feedback cycles are compliance exercises and not optimized for accelerated innovation. Monthly goal setting and self-assessment may be a more effective solution.
4 . Get fricking real!
Be true to yourself and your colleagues. Don’t forget luck, timing, and the support of a great team may have contributed to your individual success. Be humble, be genuine, and be grounded. Avoid arrogance. I think success is having the peace of mind that you’ve done the best you can, and you’ve kicked butt doing it.
5. Commit to your values
The rubber meets the road where you commit to a shared vision for your organization and the values that support it. I read an article once that asked “Are you prepared to fire your highest revenue generating employee or your highest ranking executive if they don’t live the values you’ve articulated and shared?” I tried putting myself in that position in my head, thinking it would be a difficult decision… and in the end, it wasn’t all that difficult. What are your non-negotiables? Can you truly commit to the vision and not waver?
Although the action plan seems simple, the challenge is consistency on an individual level, and broad-based adoption organizationally. How do we sustain momentum? We don’t wait for change to happen. We make it happen — together. We are the change agents and the sooner we recognize the duality of our roles as leaders and team players, the sooner we will co-create an innovative place to work for everyone in the organization.
That’s all the ranting I have for today.
You got to hand it to the people who are creating an awesome company and want to share their story with the world.
This is definitely a Kickstarter campaign worth backing - the first EVER EVER documentary about an Arab Tech Startup.
This is going to be such a kick-ass documentary, so if you can, PLEDGE!
أطلق موقع سينموز الشّهر الفائت حملة مميّزة ترمي إلى الدّفع بالموقع إلى الأمام وجمع التّمويل اللاّزم لإنتاج أوّل وثائقيّ من نوعه حول شركة عربيّة ناشئة
سيرافق ألموز فايمُس فريق عمل سينموز طوال ستّة أشهر وسيروي لكم قصصًا صادقة وإنسانيّة تتمحور حول المنظّمين الشّباب والمتفانين الّذين يسعون إلى النّجاح في تأسيس شركة ناشئة في منطقة الشّرق الأوسط وشمال أفريقيا، على الرّغم من التّحدّيات الكثيرة الّتي تواجههم.
وسيركّز الوثائقيّ على مسيرة سينموز اليوميّة بكلّ ما يتخلّلها من مشقّات وأخطاء وأحداث دراميّة وكوميديّة ومثيرة ومشوّقة بطريقة صادقة ونابعة من القلب تعتمد أسلوب تلفزيون الواقع /Real TV.
ساهم الجمهور حتّى الآن بنسبة ثلاثين في المئة. ندعوكم إذًا فردًا فردًا للانضمام إلى فريق سينموز فتكونوا أعضاء فاعلين في طاقم عملنا، كمنتجين أو داعمين أو محرّرين أو أبطال أو هواة من أجل مساعدتنا على تأمين السّبعين في المئة المتبقّية
وسيحظى المساهمون بمكافآت تتراوح من نسخة رقميّة عن الوثائقيّ فور إطلاقه إلى اشتراك فصليّ مجّانيّ بموقع سينموز وسيوجّه إليهم الشّكر في نهاية الوثائقيّ