Why digital transformation (often) fails

Paul Bessems, 01-02-2019

In recent years we have read more and more reports that robots will replace our work. But your work will probably not be replaced by robots but by people who understand digital transformation better. Many people are in denial or do not understand digital transformation sufficiently. They think digital transformation is the same as digitalization or automation. Many companies (strategy), governments (policy), and education institutes (curricula) still take ‘the company’ or ‘the business’ as the starting point for digital transformation. They suffer from dominant logic and the lack of an effective radar.

You can see this paper as developing and turning on your digital radar to make the right decisions at the right time. In my experience, turning on your radar is of the utmost importance in the context of digital transformation and, for example, the development and application of technologies such as ‘internet of things’, blockchain, ‘artificial intelligence’ and organizational concepts such as the digital assembly line. True digital transformation will affect virtually every office, knowledge organization, and information worker and fundamentally change our work and organizations. What the physical assembly line has done in factories, the digital assembly line will do in offices. You better prepare for that.

>> Read more? Request the paper (indicate which paper it concerns in ‘Comment’).


Selling your house as easy as sending an email?

Paul Bessems, blockchain consultant, 01-08-2018

Imagine that selling your house would be as easy as sending an email, big chance you would not believe that this will become reality in the near future. But blockchain makes is possible, at least technically. For a blockchain it doesn’t matter what is brings form sender to receiver: an email, a house ownership certificate or a crypto currency.

But a disruptive technology doesn’t work without awareness of a new context (from physical to digital), an aligned organization model and problem to solve. The steam engine was not invented at the beginning of the Industrial Age, but during the Roman period, but that moment there we no real problems to solve with the technology. Technology alone will not but sufficient to solve social problems such as low productivity growth, privacy, power of big tech companies, fakework and fakenews. So not the hype around crypto’s and ICO’s will help us but context and a deep understanding of new technologies and organization models can help people and organizations benefit from it.

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First blockchain book for managers on market

Weconomics PRESS RELEASE, 10-06-2018

 What if selling your house would be as easy as sending an email.

Blockchain is known as the underlying technology for cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. When you combine this technology with a new organizational model, management is reinvented. Writers Paul Bessems and Walter Bril wrote the book ‘Blockchain Organizing for Managers’. Paul Bessems: “Blockchain can contribute to challenges such as low productivity growth, the new European privacy law, the power of large tech companies and fake work & fake news. Traditional management is in need of replacement because productivity growth doesn’t keep up with our rising welfare costs.”

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Blockchain organizing: the new trust industry

Paul Bessems, 9-2-207

There’s a new and disruptive concept to organize trust in the supply and demand chain. This concept will make traditional coordination mechanism, like ‘the firm’, ‘the bank’ or ‘the government’, too expensive, almost by default. This new concept is able to organize trust, without expanding complexity. It’s a combination of a new technology with a fundamentally new organization model and we call it “blockchain organizing”. When blockchain technology is combined with a fundamentally new organization model, a disruptive way of organizing trust, our work, economy, and society will emerge. This new way of organizing also means that the IT landscape, first design and architecture and after that also development and management, will fundamentally change.

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NOMAD program


New Organization Models, Analysis and Design
(NOMAD program)

– Institute for New Organizational Thinking –

Paul Bessems, 23-04-2013

With new organization models/concepts as blockchain organizing professionals, organizations and partnerships can improve their purpose of work, productivity, privacy and power balance between individuals and institutions.

In the context of the twenty-first century we need new organization models to organize the work of service-, information- and knowledge workers in order to improve their productivity and their contribution to a more sustainable prosperity. Two examples of a new organization forms are hybrid organizing and blockchain organizing. Hybrid organizing is a cross between make (do it yourself via the institute), and buy (contracting out via the market), or between private and public. Blockchain organizing is a way of doing business, without trusting each other, you trust the protocol. Both concepts take the smallest building blocks (people and tools) and the connection/transaction between them (chain) as starting point and unity of analyzing and design. Both concepts are scalable and flexible at the same time and it will improve the productivity of information workers. The surplus time can be used to organize a more sustainable prosperity.

Within the Nomad program, it is possible to start a more theoretical research project for further understanding and development of new organization models and design with the blockchain or hybrid organizing concept. Your organization, or a group of organizations, can also define a more practical and custom made development project as part of the Nomad program.

These projects together are called: Nomad Program. This program is initiated and supervised by the Institute of New Organizational Thinking (IFNOT), part of the Weconomics Foundation.

The main goal of the Nomad program is to set up projects in order to improve purpose and productivity of our work (especially in information intensive organizations), and restore privacy and power for individuals. The main goal of this paper is to inform project leaders and professionals, organizations and partnerships about this program in order to explore their possible contributions to the program in general and their development or contribution to a specific project in particular.

See here for full proposal

Blockchain organizing: towards a new paradigm

Imagine there is way of organizing your work so powerful, that it will make the default ways of organizing obsolete. A way that is so disruptive that not only traditional roles like sales, purchase, legal, finance, HR and management will change or even disappear, but also has the potential to make ‘the firm’, as the main organization form, obsolete. This new form exists and is called: blockchain organizing. It is already mentioned by thoughtleaders that blockchain organizing now, has the same potential as the Internet in the nineties. All that blockchain organizing needs are the smallest building stones: a human and a tool, demand and supply and a meaningful, reliable and secured connection between them. That’s all! It’s a perfect way for working together in a smarter way, not only within organizations but especially between organizations. The beauty of this disruptive organization form lies in its simplicity and its balance between fundamental organization drivers like scalability and flexibility, motivation and coordination, supply and demand.

Maybe blockchain organizing seems to be far away from your role, profession or organization. But it is inevitable that many of the existing jobs and organizations will soon become obsolete. The question is: how do you prepare for this? How can you continue to add value? How does the future of work look like for you? Maybe this paper will help you to find answers. Blockchain organizing is not technical or difficult. It mainly requires a different perspective, a different way of ‘looking’, thinking and organizing. If you become part of this new disruptive development, you can play a key role in the organization of work in the future. Investing in blockchain organizing now means: taking a lead and secure your position in the future of work.

This white paper is not so much about technology, but more about the question: what is the future of work? What is work and how will it be organized? This paper will address mainly the role that the smallest building stones, and their connection, play in the way we organize our work in a digital age and our needs for organizing a more sustainable prosperity. In this paper I will answer questions as: What is blockchain organizing and why it is increasingly important for the organization of your work? What are the fundamentals of blockchain organizing and how do blockchain organizations look like? What is the relationship between specialization, coordinating and finalization with blockchain organizing? How can you apply blockchain organizing in your own organization and finally, what kinds of resistance can you expect in relation to blockchain organizing?

>> Go to white paper

Why we have to reinvent the concept of competition and run faster than the futures arrives

Paul Bessems, 6-6-2015

We have to reinvent the concept of competition. We think that we are in competition with people from the same generation, but that is a very limited, unwise, selfish and not so sustainable. First we thought that we were in competition with our neighbors, then with companies within the EU and now we think that we are in competition with low-wages countries. But wages in China and India will rise and what then? Only Africa is left and after that? We are not in competition with people from the same generation, we are in competition with the future. We have to run faster than the future comes. Before the future starts we have to organize our prosperity in a more sustainable way. Not only our energy supply and climate control, but we also have to balance prosperity costs and benefits. We have to organize a society in a way that our children can choose a same level of prosperity than we have now. We have to organize a sustainable prosperity before it is too late, not for us, maybe not for our children but at least for our grandchildren and their children.

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Why the 2008 crisis is not over

Paul Bessems 15-6-2015

More and more we see news articles that the 2008 crisis is over, but most of the politicians don’t understand the fundamentals of the problem or they do and just want to fool us with good news. And as Mark Twain said: ‘It is easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.’ So politicians can deal with the real problem later but the costs to deal with it later are much higher. The real problem that is still not solved is weak productivity improvement in combination with rising prosperity cost (cost of healthcare, education, safety etc.). 2008 was not a financial problem but a debt problem. Since the eighties our prosperity cost and benefits were not in balance and the gap was filled with printing and borrowing more money and that ended in 2008 because we don’t trust governments anymore that they can pay back.

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From Financial Capitalism to Human Capitalism

Paul Bessems, 05-10-2010

A couple of years ago I started a research project to find out whether our politic economic system – I call it financial capitalism –  is capable of solving the major problems we have to deal with in the twenty first century. These problems are at the surface now but if not solved, will destroy our society within a few generations. We have to choose now whether our society will fail or survive. Postponing the solution is the worst solution of all, and that’s what governments, companies and banks do. The reason: they cannot solve the problem because the try to solve the problem within the system……

But the system is the problem!!

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Hybrid organizing: towards a new paradigm

Paul Bessems, January 2014

We live in a time where physical production (and consumption), more and more is replaced by digital pro­duction and consumption, especially by the Internet. We live in a time where information and knowledge are the most important production factors. But most of the organization forms we organize our work with were designed in the early twentieth century. They are especially suitable for physical production in large numbers and in a relatively ‘quiet’ and local market. Traditionally we organize our work within companies (make), or we organize it by markets (buy). Institutes are scalable, but no so flexible, and markets are flexible, but often not so scalable. In the context of the twenty-first century we need hybrid organization forms that are scalable and flexible at the same time. Hybrid organizing is a cross, between make and buy, between do it yourself and contracting out, between the institute and the market. Hybrid organizing has a new unit of analyzing and design. If you organize your work via the institute, the unity of thinking is the institute. The institute borders are literally the border of your thinking. With the market, the market transaction is the unity of thinking. The unity of thinking in hybrid organizing is organizing capability. Organizing capability is the meaningful connection between the two smallest organization building blocks: men and means (human and tools). You and your laptop, you have and therefore you are organizing capability. From this smallest building stone, we can build any organization by connecting and disorganize by disconnecting. The question is: why are we going to hybridize work organizations? What is hybrid organizing and where does it work and where not? What are the fundamentals of hybrid organizing, how do hybrid organizations look like? How do hybrid organizations work and why is working smart together so important within the hybrid research field? This whitepaper will answer these questions.

Click here for full article