On changing the culture, On collaboration, On dreaming, On tigers

The 7 good habits of people in great organizations

Think about an organization where every single employee…

  1. ARE PROACTIVE
    take initiative and make things happen – rather than complain and mourn.
  2. BEGIN WITH THE END IN MIND
    have a purpose, a vision for their lives and steers by this vision in their everyday activities.
  3. PUT FIRST THINGS FIRST
    believes that they are the creative force of their own lives and knows what is important to them and acts based on these priorities.
  4. THINK WIN-WIN
    knows that there is enough for everybody and look for solutions together by being careful and brave.
  5. SEEK FIRST TO UNDERSTAND, THEN TO BE UNDERSTOOD
    give each other psychological air, do not judge others and thus create an aura of trust.
  6. SYNERGIZE
    involve others in their difficult decisions and firmly believe that
    1 + 1 = 4
  7. SHARPEN THE SAW
    use 7 hours each week on sharpening their skills, and the remaining 161 hours to live in the four dimensions of life (physical, mental, social and spiritual) and increase depth and quality of life.

Think about the value creation we would have if these habits were integrated in your organization?

Courtesy of Gøran Gundersen who made me aware of the 7 habits and his interpretations of the habits and Stephen Covey who coined them in his book 7 Habits of highly effective people.

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On dreaming, On entrepreneurship

A call for car 2.0

I just watched the TED talk, Shai Agassi: A bold plan for mass adoption of electric cars, and I became very excited with his proposal.

He says car 2.0 needs to be about infrastructure coherence and separating the battery from the car. So what does he need:
– Charging stations where you normally park your cars. He states that Scandinavia already have this many places, and we do.
– Battery swapping stations. This we do not have, so let’s start building.

Earlier i wrote about BYD and Tesla, now he tells that the Renault-Nissan alliance is committed to make his dream a reality. That is great news and it seems like most auto manufacturers are really starting to get around!

He also introduve the term eMile (should have been eKM I think), currently priced at 8 cents. Remarkable! Does anyone care to do the math and make comparable tables with gasoline?

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On dreaming, On tigers

The tiger is back!

Finally! The moment I have been waiting for is here! The tiger in front of Oslo Central Station is back! Oslo is once again claiming it’s rights as Tigerstaden (tiger city).

I have tried to find out where it has been and whether it was plans for it to come back, but did not succeed. Well, here is proof, taken yesterday with my HTC diamond Touch (the kid happened to not want to move out of my picture).

Tiger of Norway (Oslo)

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On dreaming, On entrepreneurship

BYD, Changfeng, Brilliance, Tesla, Think or Volt?

All right folks, NAIAS is on! Are you lost? Yes, I am talking about cars! The above five are perhaps the cars of the future. Funny enough two of them have name from physical measuring units, however that is for nerds to beckon, and Chevrolet Volt is doomed from the beginning anyway.

GM’s Rick Wagoner was frightened by the show off from Warren Buffet-supported Chinese BYD E6 doing 400 km from fully charged, whilst Chevrolet Volt is doing ridiculously 64 km! Come on!

Tesla Roadster from California was recently presented on YouTube as the fastest accelerating electric vehicle. After all, that is an American vehicle, but not very much supported by GM or Ford. I like it very much, want to test, however not buy yet.

Ford formerly owned the Norwegian Think. They do not even say how far it goes on their sites. Maybe they have removed it when they saw BYD. Ford did not manage to make Think a profitable business, I think it is because the cars specs just isn’t good enough for people to buy it. Compared to a Volkswagen Golf your yearly spend is about the same, and when you want to visit auntie in far-away-city you are… going to, heaven forbid, invite her over instead! Think just got a round of capital and need to work hard to hang in there.

I just can’t wait till I can by a proper electric vehicle or plug-in hybrid electric vehicle “off the shelf”! I want one now, my old car is crappy and 13 years old! I believe car sales the last couple of months show that I am not alone, everybody is waiting for these cars to become mainstream available. So what the f#$@, is taking the manufacturers so long? Are the entire car industry corrupted by oil companies? Are their researchers just not good enough? Are they not the right people to innovate? This is going to be world histories greatest technology leap into the energy climate era and so far Toyota is the only formerly known car manufacturer that is nearly hanging in there with their hybrids!

Ridiculous!

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On dreaming

The american dream – in Norway!

Yesterday was a great day. I had a few friends over for some beers. It was supposed to be a pre party and going out afterwards, but people stayed on and on. That is always nice.

So why is this of interest? One of my friends brought his American girlfriend, and late in the night I mentioned my blog and the article about the jante law and tall poppy. We had to explain the tall poppy syndrome to her. She had never heard about it. But when I cited the Viking Law we all recognized it as the Scandinavian version of the American dream.

I find this an interesting point in order to understand the American and the Norwegian entrepreneurship culture. I have been to the Norwegian Entrepreneurship Programme in Boston, US where we learned that one should not be afraid to think big. In the traditional Norwegian farmer community where I grew up you were almost considered criminal if you had a bigger tractor than your neighbor or had more land than your neighbor. Not that my family ever cared. And that might be why I find this so interesting. It is now possible to think big in this small country. However, the problem seems to be that media and the politicians seem to have missed a point – this change is to the good and not to the bad! And they could help us develop.

So what is the problem? Well the problem is that when you think big, you are more likely to fail. An American saying is that “One would rather be a spectacular failure than a dismal success”. When the journalist yesterday wrote about the Viking law, and nicknamed it “Rikeloven” (the rich man’s law) I think he misses that this law is a good thing. It does not apply only to rich people. It applies to everybody, including the drug addicts on the streets of Oslo now selling a magazine instead of begging for money.

When he further mentions a rubber tire and boot factory in Askim, conveniently enough named Viking, that were shut down in 1991 because of fierce international competition, as an example of this being a bad thing I really struggle. It employed some 500 people from 1906 to 1991. Obviously it resembled a cornerstone company in the city. But I happen to see that this city is now prosperous and full of life, nearly 20 years later. It also has a big polish community of guest workers who settled there in late 70s and 80s because of the factory. They contribute to culture, new job creation enriching the community. It has the region’s best indoor swimming arena and prosperous shopping opportunities in the old factory hall. So my challenge to the press – next time a factory shuts down – challenge the people on what they will do now – help then create new jobs! Do not blame the management who actually made it possible to work there in the first place and actually gave people work, experience and meaning for years before things went wrong.

For the record, I fully support the watchdog role of the media when it comes to fair critics. But please, change is natural, it is good and it is what we envision it to be. It is an opportunity, not a problem.

TON

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On dreaming

The Viking law!

Today seem to be a good day to start this blog. The sun is shining, it is summer. But these are not the important things right now.

I have been thinking about this blog for quite some time, and early on decided it should bring management, entrepreneurship and politics together. To the world, but as seen from Norway. I currently know no other bloggers in Norway that blog with a world perspective, but I am sure I will find out pretty soon. Feel free to comment below.

So what’s about the name? Well, the Tiger refers to the tiger sculpture in front of Oslo Central Station. Lately it has been looking at some pretty nasty drug dealing, construction work nearby and Nigerian ho’s attacking humble Norwegian (but still a bit drunk) young men on their way home by night. And the last two weeks 18 tourist couches caught fire between the tiger and our new national monument, the opera. What a beautiful country.

Now, back to the reason why this is a good day to start a blog. The real reason is today’s post in the national newspaper “Dagens Næringsliv” (Norwegian Business times) about the Nordic phenomena the “Jante law“, a poem written in 1933 by the authorAksel Sandemose that has had quite a lot to say for building the social democracy that we have. Its English counterpart, the tall poppy syndromeshould be familiar.

Apparently this ”law” has 75 years anniversary this year, but it has been replaced – actually this was done rather dramatically in a Norwegian TV show in the late 80s where they literally threw this poem in the ocean outside a management course training centre, Solstrand, and told everybody that the we should rather have faith in the Viking law. It goes like this:

  1. See opportunities
  2. Create winners
  3. Be brave!
  4. Give praise
  5. Think positive
  6. Take responsibility
  7. Look forward
  8. Pursue education and research
  9. Oppose jealousy and laziness
  10. Start today!

So here I am.

I just started the first day in my new life.

And look forward to bringing out my perspectives to the world.

So long,

The tiger of Norway

The tiger of Norway

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