September 10, 2005

Truly Open Communications

There's a great post at the Proudly Serving My Corporate Masters Blog called An Open Letter to Jeff Raikes. If you're not a techie, you may not immediately grasp what Adam Barr the writer of the post is saying. Put aside the subject for a moment.

In case you don't know who Jeff Raikes is, I'll tell you - he's
Group Vice President, Information Worker Business at Microsoft...Jeff is the uber person responsible for MS Office. So, who's Adam? - he's a Program Manager at Microsoft that resides about 10 levels in the org chart below Raikes! Gutsy move by Adam? Perhaps. Could he get fired for this? Maybe. Some Bloggers writing about their employers have been fired for less.

Robert Scoble wrote a comment about Adam's post that I totally agree with - "when we post things publicly we're trying to change both the top and the bottom at the same time"..."This is a FUNDAMENTAL SHIFT in how corporations work. One that we're just starting to figure out ourselves. But, one that has much better scale and makes employees much more bought into the process." Well said Robert.

Adam is speaking in the voice of the customer and tying conversations outside the company to those going in inside. What's key is that his recommendations are to protect and ensure Microsoft's interests/position. That's why if I were still at Microsoft I wouldn't fire Adam for this. I think that Adam Barr is showing real leadership.

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