Post Tagged with: "John Seely Brown"
John Seely Brown: Pursuing Passion to Increase Potential I would rather hire a high-level World of Warcraft player than a NBA from Harvard. Why is a game, a massive multiplayer game that has maybe 12 million people or more playing it like the World of Warcraft so important at both the individual level and maybe at the corporate level? To understand these massive multiplayer games like World of Warcraft, do not think about it as just game play, but look at the social life on the edge of the game. On a typical night there will be approximately 15,000 new strategic ideas created about the world. If you want to compete that night or the next day, somehow you have to appropriate in your own play what 15,000 new ideas mean to you in order to go into the high-end raid. Most of these high-end performance groups in World of Warcraft create guild; you have to have a guild to do anything because it’s fundamentally a collaborative game. These guilds will be sometimes 100, 200 people. Guess what? They don’t have a bonus structure to guide them to incent them. Only passion, only interest works. And what you have to have is find a way to turn this guild structure of several hundred people into knowledge refining groups. So basically self-organizing to some extent, things start to happen particularly groups go off and say, “I’m going to study this, I’m going to study this, I’m going to try this idea out and by tonight I will have consolidated all this class of ideas about how this particular new magic potion might actually work to re-heal you faster, blah, blah, blah.” So what we’ve done is we’ve turned this entire kind of social organization into an ideation structure and an idea refinement structure all as more or less self-organizing groups. Show me anything that happens in the corporate world that has 15,000 new strategic ideas. Possibly biotech does, but no world I know about in the corporate world. We think about ten new ideas already overloading us, 10,000 is unthinkable. When we look in to the social structures and the knowledge capability, refining and generation capabilities of this guild structures, there is something going on here. Now, these are not just self-organizing groups. Basically every high-end guild has a constitution. The leaders of these guilds also have to do dispute adjudication all the time. They also have to be willing to say, “Let’s measure ourselves.” These guilds are truly meritocracy based. So even if you were the leader of this particular high-end raid, at the end you do an after action review and the after action review each person is open to total criticism by everybody else. You can replay the whole thing because basically its all computer meditated so it can be captured. But equally interesting to me is you can’t play in these complex worlds without building dashboards. And these are dashboards that are measuring you, are measuring your […]