12.5 The Mesh. How to create your own…


    “A Mesh describes a type of network that allows any node to link in any direction with any other nodes in the system. Every part is connected to every other part, and they move in tandem. … Mesh businesses are knotted to each other, and to the world, in myriad ways.”
    – Lisa Gansky in The Mesh.

    “Meshworks focuses on ‘meshing’ or integrating, aligning, and synergizing people and resources on specific challenges, goals, objectives or outcomes, using a transcendent purpose.”
    – Dr. Don Beck, Center for Human Emergence.

    Stakeholders in the Organization 3.0 want to be increasingly involved with the realization of its services or products. This contributes to that special user experience. Every experience, from incidental co-creation to a full collaboration, enhances the feeling that it is all about you, and, as an additional advantage, delivers a much more superior product or service. So much better, in fact, that the eventual sticker price, whether that be monetary or social capital, has become secondary as a selection criteria for doing business, procurement, and collaboration. In order to give the stakeholders that feeling of authenticity, and in order to co-create with them, the organization has to connect with them and start a dialogue.

    In that way, the organization can create its own mesh of value networks. Most of these networks are like mini-circular economic systems in themselves. Acting from abundance, social capital, reciprocity, and trust complements the traditional monetary systems. The value creation locations are 3rd Spaces; virtual and reality are one.

    Stakeholders of organizations are interconnected, so they will form the connection between an organization and the outside world. In that way, the organization may be active in many formal and informal networks in the value creation process.

    To gain access to a whole network of stakeholders, the modern decisive organization can do itself a favor by developing a solid social media strategy. The starting point is that all communication moments (so-called touch points) are engagement opportunities between all stakeholders, inside and outside the organization 3.0. This requires dynamic and flexible internal processes, and a large extent of operational freedom for the people involved. But when you are succesfull in doing this, your organization becomes resilient and always ready to anticipate on the dynamics of our times. Some innovative companies let stakeholders interact between themselves, even without any “employee” involvement in the official form of a Web care team or a help and sales desk, like at the UK-based Telco Giffgaff. The Seats2meet.com helpdesk is the largest in Europe. Thousands of stakeholders assist each other on the Web, 24/7. Still, it is not OUR helpdesk.

    So, if you want to claim your position in the clusters of new value networks, called The Mesh, as an organization en route to tomorrow, you will have to work with minimal standardization, and with a new, informal corporate culture, based on trust and with open communication. Only then can you seriously make an appeal to autonomy and entrepreneurship in order to excel internally, as well as externally, around a dynamic organization. It is not a matter of “being social on the side.” It requires a completely new vision of organization. A vision to rethink the order of things. A vision that answers the question of how to challenge someone within the new value networks to feel, think, and operate with his entire capacity for the value of co-creation; and, how to supply stakeholders with relevant information at the right time, so that they can operate independently, and thus perform. A vision of a style of leadership to keep all of this on the right track is further required.

    “An ant colony forms a very powerful organization. Thousands of ants work hard and effectively in good cooperation. Together, they manage to cope with all kinds of threats, whereas a single ant would stand no chance. Yet, they do not use a top-down command structure. It is interesting to notice that, on average, half of the ant colony population is without work. They are ready to go into action, should any shortages in ant power occur. This combination of anticipating ants and a large reservoir of inactive ants causes the colony to serve as a mechanism with a hugely adaptive capacity.The organization3.0 resembles an ecosystem which largely maintains itself and provides opportunities of value creation for its members, just like an ant colony is an independent ecosystem serving its own ant population.”
    – Evert Jan van Hasselt and Pauline Romanesco, Ecosystems for Business

    The value creation of Society 3.0 is born out of the mobility of people, knowledge, and energy. People, operating from within their social networks, with the same objective. They share goals. Knowledge is also being shared, with the generation of new knowledge, and thus, new value, as a result. In Society 3.0, we collaborate in a different way. We do that within open and flat organizations: social network, resilient organizations that are in harmony with their Mesh eco-system, and are therefore sustainable.

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