Enterprise of the future update: More disruption ahead

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An example of phyles and DAOs in action

Ideagist.com is the brainchild of Pakistani entrepreneur and angel investor Hassan Syed. A social media platform with more than 260,000 members from 195 U.N.-recognized countries and territories, it’s the largest virtual business incubator in the world. Many of its members are startups, which are traditionally cash-poor. For this reason, the platform allows members to buy and sell products and services using digital tokens instead of traditional currencies.

Ideagist contains more than 360 separate phyles, including one solely devoted to incubating ideas related to blockchain. Anyone can sign up, but some of the phyles are invitation-only. Others require submitting an application. After all, they wouldn't be phyles if they let just anybody in. However, if, for some reason, you feel you’ve been wrongfully denied membership in a particular group, no problem. You can simply start your own.

Opportunities for KM

One shortcoming with phyles and DAOs is that they tend to revert to the old tribal method of knowledge transfer. Precious time and resources can be wasted repeating mistakes and reinventing the wheel. The good news is that DAOs already have the infrastructure in place for generating and sharing knowledge, both internally and externally. But few know how to effectively use all of that fancy plumbing to enhance and accelerate the innovation and learning cycle. This is where we, as KM professionals, can make a significant impact.

Also, despite all the excitement about massive distribution and autonomy, the role of management is not going away. Yet, it will definitely undergo serious disruption. Governance, especially knowledge governance, will take on increasing importance. In a world filled with autonomous and semi-autonomous machines, humans will still be needed to provide adult supervision.

Finally, always remember that no system is 100% secure. The DAO, an early venture capital DAO, was shut down after only a few months due to a cyberattack. New vulnerabilities will continue to pop up. But they can be quickly detected and remedied if connections enabling the right knowledge flows are in place. This is already common practice throughout much of the open source community.

We’re clearly in the early stages of this new model of the enterprise and have barely scratched the surface. Just as with many disruptions, DAOs face a long, evolutionary process. But the potential payoffs make it worth pressing on, especially given the increasingly sluggish performance of traditional, highly centralized organizations.

In the fast-approaching world of 5G bandwidth and with the Internet of Things expanding into the Internet of Everything, DAOs will likely become as prevalent as their more traditional counterparts. We KMers need to start preparing now so we can help pave the way.

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