Collaboration, Open Solutions, and Innovation (COSI) are more than just key management strategies for public and private sector organizations. They are the initial elements of optimal context management for any group. Recognition, adoption and application of these ancient methodologies have once again becoming pertinent and are being embraced by many companies across all industries.
Physicists, chemists, biologists, anthropologists & sociologists recognize that members of any evolving system, adaptive community, tribal culture, or species would discern and embody the following as minimal survival requirements.
Upon reflection, the same specialists would also admit that the collaboration tools and practices allowing agile coordination are co-dictated by context, by context tempo and by the scale of the system or group.
In a nutshell, the following three factors describe the constant challenge for citizens everywhere at any point in time.
First, contexts become more complex, and the universal approach is to diversify enough tools and practices so that any obstacle can be circumvented with indirect workarounds.
Second, with external complexity and internal diversity, the tempo of all our interactions constantly accelerates. Therefore, groups forced to survive through growth-x-diversity do so only with methodologies that deliver more and faster group agility.
Third, to quickly explore all emerging options better/faster/cheaper than others, all groups must quickly visualize their goals, and then tune inter-dependencies - tools & practices - to quickly design, practice and execute solutions that deliver more, not fewer succeeding options.
In short, all human history is a race to find and perfect new methods replacing older methods that won't scale to the levels we need today and tomorrow.
While the underlying game is parsing, mapping, coordinating and group tuning, the enabling infrastructure tool set always starts with COSI – Collaboration, Open Solutions, & Innovation. Without COSI, the costs of coordination can't be met and the optimal return-on-coordination can't be realized.
Further Commentary by Roger Erickson, PhD
Throughout the world, industries, businesses and whole cultures that have scaled beyond the capabilities of past methodologies are playing catchup to those who have invented new, more scalable methods. No one is obsolete, but we're never finished re-combining them, and the diverse methods they used - into what they and others can become. Any group that uses COSI to openly scale ancient tribal logic to new levels is simply following - and extending - their ancestors footsteps.
To revolutionize the culture you work in, simply scale up the ancient logic of Open Source. Freely share and give away all the low-margin tools and technologies that you wish everyone was using. That way you free yourself and all others to concentrate on inventing, selecting and applying those tools, practices and inter-dependencies that provide returns higher than anyone can currently imagine. The future is bigger than you think. Can you share the past freely enough to allow the future to happen, faster? Application of these three enabling strategies creates a robust model for recapturing tempo and agility, regardless of scale or tempo. The immediate payoff involves improving the operational efficiency, quality and services delivered by public and private sector organizations.
Since the highest return is always the return-on-coordination, our highest goals is to lower the cost-of-coordination. To do just that, diverse, collaborative efforts to develop innovative, open source software tools, applications, and other solutions for use by public and private sector organizations are well underway - worldwide. These innovative 'Open' Business, Financial and Policy solutions make use of open source licensing arrangements that allow public and private institutions, as well as individuals, flexible acquisition and timely use of coordination-enabling tools at little or no cost. This lowering of the cost of coordination generates tremendous long term as well as short term benefits for all of us.