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make way for the damn ducklings

  • Seth’s Blog, December 2008: If you could change your life. Here Seth challenges audiences to do something different while taking matters into their own hands, and he leads by participating. He’s offering to open up his offices for 6 months.
  • Squidoo lens: Don’t go to Business School
  • SAMBA Blog
  • Seth’s Blog, June 4, 2009: Learning from the MBA program. Here’s a re-cap, Seth’s style of what happen. Candid, objective, personal, with lots of resources, sharing stories and accounts. Readers felts a bit as if they were there, and many others wished they were.


{Photography by Theilr}

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A freemium cookbook for your company

On July 18, 2009, in Business, by lor3nzo


Business models are a tricky subject. There is an old saying among entrepreneurs that there is no real value to writing down your business model, as it will have changed by the time you commit it to paper. The joke has truth to it; I can personally attest to its veracity. But there is something brewing in the larger world of Internet business models that has wide implications: freemium.

Fred Wilson, famed VC and blogger, originally came up with the general concept of freemium, which he explained this way:

Give your service away for free, possibly ad supported but maybe not, acquire a lot of customers very efficiently through word of mouth, referral networks, organic search marketing, etc, then offer premium priced value added services or an enhanced version of your service to your customer base.

This concept, building an audience, then implementing paid features as later expansions, is slowly becoming the de facto model for online companies. Of course, there are many successful Internet companies today that avoid it entirely. However, they all seem to lose money. Digg, Twitter, and the other media darlings of the Web 2.0 world still live in red ink, even after scaling to mass market size.

This has direct implications for companies today that are migrating parts of their entire business to the Internet. To modify the colloquialism of the Internet that “traffic is the new revenue,” the road to profitability seems instead to be “revenue is the new revenue.” Or, as David Hansson put it delicately to people working on the Internet, “Charge a price!” (Read more at: Building43.com)


{Photography by Foooooey}

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The risk/reward confusion

. . . Doubling reward again from B to C, though, brings significant incremental risk. . .   Read more at: The risk/reward confusion (Seth’s Blog)


Inventing the Organizations of the 21st Century

In 1994 the MIT Sloan School of Management launched a bold initiative in research and education called “Inventing the Organizations of the 21st Century.” The mission of the center was to not only understand emerging ways of working, but also to invent entirely new and more effective approaches and put them into practice.

The genesis of the effort was found in a unique point in our history. Sweeping political, economic, social and especially technological transformations have created a fundamentally new era of business characterized by unprecedented complexity and rapid change during the 1990s. These sweeping changes have produced startling setbacks for what have been some of the world’s most successful companies, and at the same time brought great opportunity for new types of organizations.

The Initiative ended with a summary conference in December 1999, on the eve of the 21st Century. At this conference, the findings of the six-year effort were presented along with a manifesto for what we propose as an important way of thinking about the organizations of the next century. The research begun in this initiative is now continuing in a variety of other places at MIT, including the Center for eBusiness and the Center for Coordination Science.

In 2003, the major results of the Initiative were published in a book with the same name: Inventing the Organizations of the 21st Century.

This web site provides an overview of the Initiative, its faculty, and its research.

Related site: November 1999 Summary of the Conference: Inventing the Organizations of the 21st Century.


{Image by MIT}

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