Monthly Archives: June 2004

Weird Ideas by Bob Sutton

Some time ago Robert Sutton wrote a HBR article on “11 and a 1/2 weird ideas that work“. He’s now got that into the form of a book and takes on the type of “gurus” of innovation like Gary Hamel.

Sutton earlier wrote The Knowing-Doing Gap: How Smart Firms Turn Knowledge Into Action along with Jeffrey Pfeffer.

Sutton studies the links between managerial knowledge and organizational action, innovation, and organizational performance. That’s why I’m so fascinated by his work. Our interests overlap ! 🙂

here are some of his ideas :-))

Weird Idea #1. Hire slow learners of the organizational code. Specifically, hire people with a special kind of stupidity or stubbornness — who avoid, ignore, or reject how things are “supposed to be done around here.” Surround those slow learners with fast learners who understand how to promote their creative ideas.

Weird Idea #1 1/2. Hire people who make you uncomfortable — even those whom you dislike. Once you’ve hired people who prompt discomfort, take extra care to listen to their ideas.

Weird Idea #2. Hire people whom you (probably) don’t need. Interview and occasionally hire interesting or strange people with skills that your company doesn’t need at the moment — and might never need. Then ask them how they can help you. You might be surprised.

Weird Idea #3. Use job interviews to get new ideas, not just to screen candidates. Job interviews are a weak way to select employees. Still, there is a little-known benefit: They provide the opportunity to learn something new. Give job candidates problems that you can’t solve. Listen as much as you can. Talk as little as you can.

Weird Idea #4. Encourage people to ignore superiors and peers. Hire defiant outsiders. Rather than teaching newcomers about company history or procedure, have the newcomers teach the old-timers how to think and act. Encourage people to drive you crazy by doing what they think is right rather than what they are told.

Weird Idea #5. Find happy people, and let them fight. If you want innovation, you need upbeat people who know the right way to battle. Avoid conflict during the earliest stages of the creative process, but encourage people to fight over ideas in the intermediate stages.

The 10 Highest Paid HR Leaders in the US focusses on the 10 Highest Paid Human Resources Leaders :
“The 10 highest-paid human resource leaders in U.S. public companies work in industries ranging from manufacturing to retail to advertising. Their multi-million dollar compensation packages show that workforce executives are indeed gaining elite corporate status–they are among the five highest-paid officers in their companies. But the profession still has a long way to go before it shares top billing with CEOs and CFOs. “

Read more

Rediff offers 1 GB of free email space too!

The competition is getting heated up in the email space.

Gmail’s offer for 1 GB of email space led to Yahoo offering 100 MB of and today Rediff has gone ahead and offered 1 GB of space.

With Gmail still in beta and startup mode what is going to happen next? What will other players like MSN/Hotmail do now? Will it take over some provider?

The eFE story and Telegraph story on Rediff’s quantum increase in email

The winners of the Gmail competition are ….

OK, I didn’t have to wait much to get the winners…here they are..

Nag’s reasons are:

“I dont know if you really have one extra GMAIL account (oh yes Nag, I do!) to part with but if you are willing to part with here
Here are few reasons why i want that account…
1. I blew the chance to have one: I am a member of “Google in your language” program (I help google in translation of there english pages in to kannada). They had sent me a mail asking me to sign up, but i was busy in somthing else and now i regret.

2.I might convert (in to a google fan that is):All my mails are at yahoo (, I use yahoo because the bandwidth we have here yahoo is the only mail i can access in hurry,, If google’s mail is as fast as its search then why not use google insted of yahoo..

3. I need some more space:I have few documents ( my resumes:):):) being in top of the list) few mails (rejection of my resumes) etc..which I have to access anywhere i go, with yahoo i cannot keep all of them, but with 1GB i think i can keep all of them.”

Congrats Nag for that honest post :-)) , but you need to check your yahoo account’s bulk mail folder…because apparently a gmail invitation lands up…so be careful!

While winner no. 2 Anurag has a pithy reason:

“challenged my GF (I assume that stands for girlfriend!) that even I can get a GMAIL account before it is open for all..!!”

Very valid reason, Anurag…there you go !

Congrats Nag and Anurag !(my, even their names rhyme….that’s another good reason 😉

Want a Gmail account? Contact me!

hey my faithful blog readers,

I have been using Gmail for quite some time now and am one of those lucky few who have a couple of invitations to give out. If you want a Gmail account leave me a message why you want it.

The best two responses (i’ll decide on the criteria 😉 will win Gmail accounts from me. So leave your best reasons in the comments of this post.

Check out these sites for more on the Gmail popularity

Gmail Swap

The PC world article, Wired article, O’reilly’s article, Washingtonpost article about Gmail

If you are worried about stuff like privacy, don’t contact me 😀