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Who Will be the Next Bill Gates?

We’ve been hopping on various models of “management systems” and, for years, taking each one for a spin.

…and now, of course, we’re in need of Social Network Management Systems.

Perhaps it’s time to take off the training wheels, forget about all these discrete “management systems,” and take a fresh 30,000 foot view of what we’re doing (and needing) here.

First of all, this is ultimately not about Management. It’s primarily about Connecting. Finding and connecting and recording. Our greatest need, in the massive volumes and varying types of data and people and media, is rapidly gaining the ability to connect with whom and what we are looking for (or who and what is “looking for” us), and interact. That’s the common ground here, with every one of these systems.

In one case, we need to find a bit of information; in another, we want to gain access to relevant people; in yet another, we must complete an assigned course; in another, we need a full customer profile – but the core “verbs” are the same. Find. Connect. Interact.

We are whole people and we need a whole system, not all these bits and pieces. These are like so many Legos, begging to be assembled into something greater.

The proliferation of all these systems with their various sibling-like names only underscores the fact that similar needs exist across silos, and that each silo has come up with its own tricycle. Yet, they all have 3 wheels, a seat, and handlebars. They’re just painted different colors.

What we need now, quite frankly, is a Harley. A vehicle, an engine, a platform that lets us connect with…whatever. How would you like such a meta-system to work – what features should it have? What would we call it?

Whoever builds that is going to be the next Bill Gates, methinks.


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