Is it alive? LO16447

T.J. Elliott (tjell@IDT.NET)
Thu, 08 Jan 1998 10:36:17 -0800

Replying to LO16439 --

Dr. Steve Eskow wrote:
> Ben Compton write well of the shift in his thinking about organizations,
> and illustrates with Microsoft and Novell.
> Perhaps he and other may find it useful to know why some of us continue to
> cling to the basic metaphor of organization as "team"
> First: there are different kinds of teams playing games that require
> different ensembles of skills.
> If, then, Bill Gates is playing baseball he can strike out 6 times out of
> 10 and still be a brilliant batter.
> But baseball is not as useful to this analysis of Ben's as is football.
> Bill Gates is the Joe Montana of his world, a cunning, skillful, do it all
> quarterback.

Not to get too cute with this but I think of Gates more as Bill Walsh
(former coach now 49ers exec) or even Eddie DeBartolo (owner). The
distinction is that Gates knows to go out and get the best players.
("Don't get 10 people at $60,000, get the one best person at $600,000."
This echoes in Tom Peters' recent "Best In World" stuff from Circle of
Innovation.) He takes an executibve role in the strategy but realizes that
his job is big picture monitoring and cultural symbolism. That symbolism
is directed both to the outside world ("This is who the Microsoft team
is.") and to the inside world ("This is who we are.") There are no
perfect metaphors (they are representations, not the real thing) but the
team one has advantages as Steve and Ben cite.

All the best,


T.J. Elliott Cavanaugh Leahy 914 366-7499

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