In the real world, satellite offices for large companies often have the highest productivity, best morale and attitude. But in badly run companies they are allowed to develop a very distinct culture that – if left unchecked – drifts them away from the heaquarters. I have noticed this in all large companies I have worked for or with, most of the time with/in their international sales and marketing groups, which are – by definition – geographically very spread out. The companies who were good at managing it were excellent, the ones who were poor went out of business or should have been. The only difference between the failed and the great companies were the frequent in person visits by the leaders, technical experts and the occasional regional or even global piss-up (err, Strategic Goal Setting Roundtable Convention, something like that). I want to stress, no amount of internet connectivity, no amount of “team” motivational structure and teleconferences can compensate for an afternoon with the team in a pub.
Society is currently undergoing rather substantial transformations, the one I mean to think about today is “friendship” and what it means nowadays. Maybe there are many blogs and scientific papers written about it but I never looked at those. Not because of arrogance but because I abhor channel flipping. I’d like to stay with my topic for a while and not have it “contaminated” by the wisdom and insights of others.