Bernie Anderson
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the blog

Current musings, whatever they may be. 

The Clash of Culture and Speed

Some things don't mix.

We know about oil and water, toothpaste and orange juice. White after Labor Day, Crocs and pretty much everything.

In today’s business culture, the technology and speed of looming 2020 are smacking up against culture and structures from over a century ago.

Many organizations continue to think in terms of Fordism.

Henry Ford is the father of mass production. He led the cultural charge into the modern era by standardizing mass production and creating high volumes of cars. Soon, everyone and everything else followed suit. There was money to made after all. Mass production was the spark igniting the massive fire of American consumerism.

Productivity is standardized assembly line behavior.
Unassembled widget in, assembled widget out.
How many of these can we make in a day? In an hour? In a minute?

When you’ve achieved maximum productivity, engineers take a look at the process. They decide to build a machine that’s faster and more accurate than you.

And there’s the collision.

If productivity is about more, but faster, you will quickly bump up against capacity limits.

We have entered a different age. Technology can do tasks thousands of times faster and more accurately than humans. AI technology will increase the gap.

Our value is no longer in our ability to make widgets. Our value is in being human.

In 2019, being more productive starts with slowing down.

Productivity means focusing on what matters most.
The structures have changed.
The tools have changed.
The culture has changed.

Our definition of productivity also needs to change.

Will you do “more, but faster” or “less, but better”?