Feb 02 2008
Reid Walker, Lenovo’s VP of Global Communications and Sponsorships, just launched a blog on the Lenovo blog platform devoted to the topic of “worldsourcing.” Esteban Panzeri built this in record time and it launched a couple days ago. Reid writes of the World Economic Forum in Davos, CH:
“Lenovoâ€™s Worldsourcing business strategy was front-and-center during a discussion between Lenovo president and CEO Bill Amelio with BusinessWeekâ€™s tech writer Steve Hamm. Steve ended writing an insightful piece based on this discussion on his â€œBangalore Tigersâ€ blog entitled: Lenovo: A Company without a Country, where he posits how global corporations are transforming themselves into â€œtransnationals.â€ Bill Amelio says he firmly believes that businesses must â€œoperate as if thereâ€™s just one time zone,â€ and always be â€œon,â€ and goes on to describe how worldsourcing has transformed Lenovoâ€™s headquarters operations, which are now distributed across the globe with quarterly board meetings rotated from region-to-region.”
Worldsourcing is an interesting (to me) meme that addresses the future of global corporate operations, to wit, Lenovo’s status as a company with no headquarters per se, but a floating center that moves fluidly between Beijing, North Carolina, Paris, Singapore … where-ever and whenever (which is around the clock) the business demands it.
Reid defines Worldsourcing:
“What is Worldsourcing?
Increasingly, we live in a world with just one time zone and business must source materials, innovation, talent, logistics, infrastructure, and production wherever they are best available. And they must sell wherever profitable markets exist, anywhere in the world. In a nutshell, thatâ€™s worldsourcing â€” a business strategy that taps global diversity and resources and distributes management, operations, processes, and production to create more efficiencies wherever they will function best to deliver the best value to customers. Worldsourcing is not about cutting costs, itâ€™s really about growing your companyâ€™s value by leveraging the right expertise in the right places to identify and serve markets in both developed and emerging markets.”
I should post sometime about my thoughts on working for a so-called “Chinese” company — my boss is an Indian who grew up in Michigan, one of my closest colleagues in Indian from Kerala by way of California, our CEO grew up in Pittsburgh, VP of Alliances is a Frenchman, one close colleague is from Newcastle …. — English is the corporate language, we operate in who knows how many countries …. This is Walter Wriston’s Twilight of Soverignity taken from theory to practice.
One of the most astonishing things about working at Lenovo is its personification of the principles laid out in Thomas Friedman’s The World is Flat. Thanks to technology we can source talent and expertise from anywhere in an instant. The fact that there is “no there, there” means a guy like me can attempt to run a global digital marketing operation from a old Captain’s house in a Cape Cod village, and that can be a very good thing.
So please check out Worldsourcing, Reid is no newcomer to blogging and has a front row seat at one of the more progressive organizations around.
Here’s a link to Scoble’s post on his interview with Lenovo’s CEO, Bill Amelio at Davos.