Let’s get rid of track changes!

Some of you might still remember Clippy, also known as the most annoying office assistant ( Clippy died with a new version of MS Office. Time for a new ‘less is more’ in office software: Let’s get rid of ‘Track changes’.

Let’s be honest, track changes is about the past. Literary: it shows the past, it is about control, it’s about showing off (“yes, I’ve added something to this”) or getting away from your responsibility (“this document is created by everybody”).

Track Changes comes from a linear world where people work on a document in a linear way: I write something, you add things, a boss reviews and changes things back to the original state (without even realising it is a step back), and you and up with a ‘compromis-à-la-Belge’. This can be good in political situations, but is often the worst option in texts (whether it is copywriting for a customer or an internal document stating requirements for your next product). It lacks cohesion, passion and vision.

And yes, it always looks like a complete mess!

Things aren’t linear: you work on something in parallel. You get input from various people, but you should take responsibility for delivering a good text, not a bunch of rubbish where everybody recognises a little bit, but nobody is really happy (let alone feels enthusiast).

Today’s world is about creating ideas together (in real time), but taking responsibility (yeah, you!) in delivering the end result to the customer, the world,…

Happy writing!

The future of consulting?

Consulting is a wonderful thing. It basically embraces the global knowledge that is available when you need it, without the need for developing the expertise from scratch. However, reality shows that finding the right consultant/consultancy agency is not always easy. Off course, if you happen to be a major corporation that needs a complete turnover of a strategy, an SAP implementation or a financial audit, choice may be easy: You just go for a Big Consulting firm that your boss knows. Whatever they say will be accepted and makes things a lot more easy for you. The price you pay for this is that it will cost you a lot and probably end up with a “best case” solution that they also sell to other companies and is… well “best case” and not innovative.

Also, if you are a PME or have a specific product or want to target new markets and youngsters, chances are that you either cannot or are not willing to engage these guys and girls.

The problem is that with their model, you pay for a solution that already worked but does not necessary works in the future. That is why I believe consulting has to become more innovative instead of copy-pasting. However, to arrive at this level of creativity, traditional consulting structures are not working anymore. People who work in consulting day to day loose their ability to only work on the things where they are best in. They are forced to compromise.

Thanks to today’s communication possibilities, location is no longer an issue. Virtual consulting where specialist all over the world work only on projects when their expertise is really necessary is now possible. Too bad, pure virtual consulting has his limitations: Coordination is low and they forget the nature of human decision makers: They feel better when they have actually one person to talk to… as in really talk to, face to face. A combination where businesses can have real contact with a consulting firm that then virtually connects specialists from all over the world is what we are dreaming of. We called the project JOINED!

Do you believe you can add expertise? Do you think this is a model that can prepare firms for the next decennium?

Feel free to join the conversation.

Check out