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Good morning dear reader & welcome to my world for another week. In my last article I spoke on failure. I am committed to sharing my battles, because hearing about my battles might help you fight yours. I am ashamed to admit this, but in recent weeks with regards my participation in an organisation my mind has not been in a good place. I found myself not looking forward to going & in fact, upon arrival I typically want it to be over before it is finished.

This puzzled me because I usually do not normally feel this way. Particularly last week when I hear the inevitable comment which continues to arise: “we need to embrace technology”. Well, I am sorry my friends I disagree, especially when the system is not proven & often like many such new business applications the time involved to facilitate the same information in traditional models is often 5~6 times greater. This just further reinforces the greatest problem in this country, I refer to as ~ unproductivity…

However, the inevitable pressure is always on & I feel as though the silent majority just follow, because it is the seen thing to do. Not until it is too late & the damage done & change is irrevocable, the comments come: what a silly idea it all was… Accordingly, we must begin to learn it is actually good to stop, rest, & take time to soak in the good gifts which we already enjoy. If you have not done so already, I want to challenge you to study this for yourself.  Because if you do not have a conviction about this, the gravitational pull to busyness & the resultant loss of productivity will always suck you in.

If you too are hearing this as just another obligation, because we need to embrace whatever the latest fad someone is forcing down your throat, & you need to add an additional requirement to your schedule, someone is missing the point. Today, Thursday July 26th, I had the pleasure of listening to Mike Bennett from Z Energy Ltd @ a Chamber of Commerce luncheon. He shared on the differences in culture between the Z WHY & the alternative WAY ~ of telling people what to do around here. [1]

Now rest assured my friends I am not, as some people may think a dinosaur when it comes to the changes in technology which have developed in recent years. To the contrary. However more recently I am feeling a sense again where if you do not fit the model, time to move on. Ironically, Mike Bennett gave similar analogies today.

Sometime over the last decade what people used to call universal, even pervasive computing, became the Internet of Things [IoT] ~ mechanical gimmickry & not very complex software controlling everything from toasters to traffic lights. Forecasters dust of their crystal ball(s) every few months to announce the arrival (again) of the IoT. Business & social life will be blown away, these soothsayers suggest, & companies should plan to get in now or be left behind.

Others are, or becoming bearish due to specific limitations on what will be magnetizable & secure in the long run & many early IoT companies are not doing so well today largely because their models are not subscription based. IoT still has not really touched down packed with all the luggage of a new era.

Many commentators suggest IoT usher in an “age of inequality of corporate performance” as many companies fail to keep up with rising consumer expectations. Rather, senior management should be looking for better ways to leverage IoT by automating mundane tasks & creating a more enriching job for staff which rely on human empathy & judgement ~ something machines cannot [yet] do. [2]

To conclude this week dear reader, I wish to again quote from Mike Bennett today: “Why” does not come with a straight forward answer. At Z we focus on achieving extraordinary outcomes by setting the appropriate context, rather than by trying to control people. High-performing & talented people will do much better work if they understand the context. Give people a reason for belonging, the possibility of a bigger purpose & hunger for the extraordinary.

This I concur is not achievable by being told everyone ‘needs to embrace technology’. Rather embrace the knowledge & culture my friends, embrace what matters to you. Look, & appreciate what you have.

Thank you for taking the time to be with me once again. I hope my journey may encourage you also. This is Kenn Butler in Paradise, Nelson, with my best wishes for the weekend ahead. I look forward to being with you all again next week.


[1] Mike Bennet Z Energy CEO welcomed those attending to review the basis of their Perform, Behave, Learn & Enjoy very clear culture
[2] Howard Yu, Professor of Strategy & Innovation @ Switzerland’s’ IMD Business School to Nathan Smith @ NBR ~ The IoT – who benefits

Kenn Butler
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