Friday, November 9, 2007

The Fuzzy Tail

I unearthed a terse, enjoyable post and slideshare presentation from David Armano, VP of Experience Design with Critical Mass. His takes:

  • Left brain? Right brain? Neither. Fuzzy people are "light-brainers" ... they are agile, inquisitive, adaptable, flexible, and pliable.
  • To bolster your fuzziness, forget you were ever an expert. At anything.
  • Unlearn. So you can learn again.
Armano continues in his poignant argument against the binary siloing of (my comparisons, not his) generalists and specialists, hedgehogs and foxes, right-brainers v. left-brainers, and scientists v. artists:
We can no longer afford to over-analyze our challenges. We must try to get things launched—learn from these experiences and refine. We must define ourselves and what we do more broadly while retaining the potency of our our crafts. It's about going from left brain to right brain and ending up on "light brain". We must become "fuzzy".

Being fuzzy as I outline in the deck is about unlearning everything we think we know—so we can actually learn and adapt. It's about less focus on rigid tasks and job descriptions and more focus on bringing our efforts together in the overlaps—where our skills compliment each other. It's about being more nimble and adopting "fuzzy" processes to compliment our tried and true methods that have served us well in the past.

The Fuzzy Tail is my way of saying "we won't become the blacksmiths of our time". It's about pushing past the commodity—the end product or service which can be outsourced. It's about putting aside egos, getting out of silos and mixing it up with each other—I mean really mixing it up. Planners who think like designers—designers who obsess about business—information architects who write—writers who act like strategists—project managers who can direct creative and creative directors who are willing to let them. People who are willing to let others play in their sandbox.

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