We’re opening our systems – carefully, cautiously, gradually, but definitely. We’ve already had an early win. John worked with the product data management team to open the majority of our product engineering data, much to the delight of New University’s manufacturing engineering department. Some of their post-grads ran our data through some value engineering software they’re developing and came back to us with more than sixty ideas for parts rationalization. We’re still working through the suggestions. The data had been open just eleven days.
An existing supplier was, in her words, having a play. She found we have a need for a product her company stocks. They didn’t know we use it. We didn’t know they stocked it.
We’ve revised our code of conduct, and this revision and its ramifications play a prominent role in the introductory training module. Tom describes it as zero tolerance for anything that isn’t 100% authentic. It is easier said than done however, and we’re now working with a company specialist in games-based learning to roll out a self-directed e-learning program on the topic.
Everyone kick started this thread because everyone seemed to be using the word authentic. But then Georgio asked everyone what it actually means, and when no one could quite explain Sarah looked it up in the dictionary. In this context:
Authenticity, noun: having the quality of an emotionally appropriate, significant, purposive, and responsible mode of human life.
When Bob asked if authenticity was a quality that set Attenzi apart from its competition, Georgio responded by asking who on Earth would want to be inauthentic?
We agreed that authenticity was something that demanded continuous effort rather than something that could be expected to just happen. And Yvonne noted that we’re in an age where “reality is perception”, so if we want to be perceived as authentic we have to make sure we really are authentic.
You’ll recall this came from the same conversation with Yvonne about transparency. I knew it was important to Yvonne and me, and without peer pressure / groupthink / corporate mentality to the contrary, it appears everyone understands this innately. If only organizational behavior and culture came as easily.
Marcus asked for examples of inauthentic activity. Michelle jumped onto our website and pointed out where the Model 9S is described as “our most popular cooktop”. Marcus replied that we still sell more of the Model 8S, a fact Michelle confirmed she knew. So Michelle’s point is that it’s inauthentic to claim something a fact when it isn’t simply on the basis that we’d like it to be.
BB asked if this example wasn’t insignificant. Perhaps it was just an inaccuracy. Eli replied that a lie is a lie, and perhaps authenticity was about doing lots and lots of small stuff right. [Note. The lie was fixed within the hour.]
ACTION: Tom to embed this essence upon revisiting the brand (above), values and company handbook. In fact, we all need to lead this. We’re all responsible.