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Finding your Meta-Strategy


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Slides used for class ICT4SE, UC Berkeley, Feb 18, 2015

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Finding your Meta-Strategy

  1. 1. Finding Your Meta- Strategy Somik Raha Feb 18, 2015 ICT4SE, UC Berkeley
  2. 2. Let’s spend 10 minutes in silence. Simply observe your thoughts and let them settle.
  3. 3. Make a list of metrics that measure what you’re really after Metric What are you measuring?
  4. 4. Values as measures: Value functions, utility functions Value-focused thinking: Distinguishing between means and ends Values as norms: Cultural norms that are upheld in society and organizations Something else? When you hear the term values, what are you hearing?
  5. 5. There is a fourth kind of listening
  6. 6. Values as “meta-strategy” What do you make of the distinction between how we treat others and our purpose? “Our purpose for our business is essentially how we want this business to affect outsiders while how we treat others (either in the company or those we work with) is the values with which we want to run the business/our lives/our work ethic.” — Sita Kumar
  7. 7. What can brushing our teeth teach us about values? Systemic Value: Count of # times we’ve brushed Practical Value: Dental Hygiene Intrinsic Value: Personal well-being
  8. 8. Let’s try it. Go back to your list. Is there anything that you think represents what you were really after? What can be counted does not really count. What counts cannot really be counted.
  9. 9. The great poets of the world speak of this The one who confuses the label water for water is naïve indeed. Repeating “water, water,” such a one is destined to die of thirst. Sufi poet, Zaheen Shah Taji Note: He is criticizing the conflation of the label with the experience, not the use of labels themselves
  10. 10. The great poets of the world speak of this Repeating “fire, fire” produces not a scratch on the lip An ember on your lip will immediately burn it. Sufi poet, Zaheen Shah Taji Note: He is criticizing the conflation of the label with the experience, not the use of labels themselves
  11. 11. Intrinsic values are about finding your deepest values, and there are signs to recognize them Shake Emotional Silence The small truth has words that are clear. The great truth has great silence. ..Rabindranath Tagore
  12. 12. Intrinsic values have a quality of uniqueness Test: Are most people likely to say “me too” for your intrinsic value? If yes, we need to keep looking. The focus here is on those values that stir you in an odd and unique way
  13. 13. Intrinsic Values are about what’s Sacred to you “I recently read the book I Am Malala and was struck by a part of her writing that I would label sacred service. She wrote that if she met another Taliban like the one that shot her in the head, she would not retaliate but tell them how important education was for all children.” — Caitie “Sacred Service makes one feel incredibly light. I feel this is something that come from the deep innate desire of doing something good for others. I feel I have received a lot of sacred service in the past.” — Lisa Li “In my work with public sector service providers, I occasionally met people who had been in the "business" for decades and, still, diligently 'dotted the is and crossed the ts'. They did not feel it was hard and believed that it was their higher calling.” — Asim
  14. 14. We got stuck while doing a traditional DA consulting workshop Our remit: Help us double our revenues from $500M to $1B
  15. 15. Three slides that went to the board Meta-strategy (purpose)
  16. 16. M&A Strategy Check opportunity for fit with packaging “traits” Only if there is fit, let’s look at the numbers Quote from hard-nosed M&A expert: “I have never seen a soft tool work this well”
  17. 17. Observation • Human mind shuts down when faced with numbers e.g. goals like double market share, revenues, etc. • Creativity springs forth with inspiration e.g. Indian branch story, going from $2M to $30M
  18. 18. Questions for you • “The sacred service venture made me wonder if our venture needs to be volunteer-based and not for profit. Or should it only be for a fee that maintains the business.” • “How do you measure how much social value you have created? Would you say a company like Uber (solves transportation problem for middle/upper income people in developed country) is more valuable than a knowledge sharing platform for agricultural workers in India? It's much harder to create the same amount of value if you are serving people in developing countries. However, it seems like providing the same product/service to developing regions would make a bigger impact. How can ventures for developing regions justify the amount of social value they created?”
  19. 19. Associative Logic Error Feynman’s Cargo Cult Science Jainism “Khuda Key Liye” - “For God’ Sake” Non-Violence in Violence Aikido
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  23. 23. A I K I D O = T H E WAY O F H A R M O N I Z I N G W I T H T H E L I F E F O R C E
  24. 24. “Attacker” and “defender” are replaced by “receiver” and “applier”
  25. 25. The technique is an excuse to experience oneness
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  28. 28. The technique is an excuse to experience oneness
  29. 29. Questions for you • “How is it possible to do business and seek nothing in return?” • Extreme Variant: “How is it possible to fight without a trace of hatred?”
  30. 30. Mahatma Gandhi Satyagraha Upliftment of all Truth Head Heart Habit Sarvodaya Daan Upliftment of all Love Head Heart Habit Sarvodaya Vinoba Bhave Bhoodan
  31. 31. Rurouni Kenshin
  32. 32. Question for us “What is the best process for flushing out simplistic values of a venture when it is a complex problem with a complex solution?”
  33. 33. Value Mapping Finding your meta-strategy
  34. 34. What in your offering is priceless?
  35. 35. Values of SmartOrg Having fun making organizations Smarter People co- creating Magic Prudential Intrinsic Systemic Making a Difference that Matters Amazing Capabilities Awesome Software: That inspires, enables and empowers Professional Experience: Practical knowledgeable staff who can do and coach Thought Leadership: Show the way to solve real problems Improve: Build Customer’s Capability Service: Proactively and responsively serve the real need Excellence: High quality practical rigor Great Relationships: Among ourselves, with vendors, with clients Whole Person: SmartOrg is where personal passion meets the productive world Situational Leadership: Follow & lead, with responsibility and accountability VALUES as NORMS e.g. SmartOrg Complete Integrity: Honesty, openness, trust and trustworthiness. Ongoing Learning: Ongoing Personal, Professional and Team Development Impact: Empowering customers to achieve their most important objectives Financial Stewardship: Sustain the business and the people in it Prosperity Performance: Accomplishing what we set out to do Enjoyment: Work enlivens
  36. 36. Mapping your values (as meta-strategy) ? ? ? YOU Head Heart Habit Great Decisions Every Time Full Truth in Every Opportunity Agile Decision Support Systems Head Heart Habit The professional field you count yourself in You show up and this shows up A goal that is deeply inspiring and an end-in- itself for you
  37. 37. Find your purpose (meta-strategy) is an act of deep listening Things that have worked for me You can be a friend to someone Look for silence, emotion, shuddering Test the values – if any one is missing, is something big missing? Look for uniqueness, not universality
  38. 38. The professional field you count yourself in Intellectual Energy Mapping your meta-strategy ? ? ? YOU Head Heart Habit You show up and this shows up Unstoppable Energy A goal that is deeply inspiring and an end-in- itself for you Emotional Energy
  39. 39. Couple’s Meta-Strategy Hospitality Welcoming Spaces Celebration Head Heart Habit John M&A —> ? Healing Detachment Head Heart Habit Mary Before: Mary wondered about helping John in his hotel business. After: Mary is working on a transition to becoming a therapist
  40. 40. CEO’s Meta-Strategy Energy Efficiency Ecosystem Solutions Visionary Change Head Heart Habit Doug/ Retrofit Company
  41. 41. Vasper’s Meta-strategy Intelligent Exercise Healing like a child BioMimicry Head Heart Habit Vasper Systems
  42. 42. Apple’s Meta-strategy Remove Drudgery Support rebels who want to change the world Zen Minimalism Head Heart Habit Apple
  43. 43. Google’s Meta-strategy Organize world’s information Improve Lives Machine Learning Head Heart Habit Google
  44. 44. Shin-gi-tai Thanks to Kentaro Nakamichi
  45. 45. In Summary • Values as Meta-Strategy is upstream of all practical considerations • This is about the mountain you want to climb (distinct from how you want to walk on the road) • The highest given in a decision
 e.g. We commit to strategic fit 
 (safe, natural, etc.) • All economic value calculations are
 Systemic values Given Current Future
  46. 46. “How do you extend the values to your peers? How do you instill the values in people you hire? How do you internalize these values without flaunting them publicly to attract attention?”
  47. 47. Systematizing to get to the value is essential, but it is not the value Systems drive action. (police story) Public Safety Dignity of Client Education Head Heart Habit SUDPS Somik’s lens on SUDPS SYSTEM: Hire highly educated people who resonate with “dignity of client”
  48. 48. What’s your music? Under the sky studded with the sun and myriad stars, In a universe throbbing with life, I've received my little space. In sheer wonder, music springs from the depths of my soul. …Rabindranath Tagore
  49. 49. 1. Pair with someone from a team other than yours. 2. Speaker: Share deeply on what is deeply important
 Listener: Listen deeply to the sharing. Parse heart and habit (ignore head for now) Let’s try mapping your venture’s meta-strategy How do you know you’ve found something intrinsic? Silence, emotional, shaking HEAD: Intellectual Energy (ignore for now) HEART: Emotional Energy HABIT: Unstoppable Energy