Crowdsourcing exam questions …. not such a stupid idea after all !

crowd sourcingA couple of months ago I made a small speech at the Brussels European Crowdsourcing event. My focus was the increasing importance of  Mobile Broadband Connectivity in general and the Internet of things (IOT) in particular will have as accelerator for crowdsourcing.

Little did I know that I would be talking crowdsourcing all  evening in be it a totally different context…

….my 16 years old daughter Tatiana was up in arms with a Fysics test she had to … not prepare for… but actually help design the questions of the test herself.

Specifically,  recapping the task : the class was devided in eight groups of 3 students. Each group had to deliver five test questions out of a Fysics 5 chapters. The teacher will then pick at randum 10 questions from the total of 40 questions.

Making test questions it turned out is much harder than learning answers.
Moreover, as to be expected, these digital kids shared ahead of time all the questions AND answers they each had developed … so defeating the purpose of a test right ? Well not so much as now everybody was studying 40 questions !
So croudsourcing the questions provided a dedactical collaboration rarely achieved before – the dedactical power was in the journey, the engagement between students more than in the finality of the test.

To conclude, schools often focus on the “infrastructure” part of digitalization.  I don’t enough hear schools reinvent their primary mission which is to educate as best as they can. The Kan accademy with their ‘flipping the class room” is one of the good examples, the MOOC as well. The crowdsourcing of testing is now way up there for me as another example 😉


Napoleon Bonaparte : in retrospect, quite a “cool boss”


Engraving of Napoleon BonaparteI live at about 2km of Quatre Bras and 30km of Waterloo, both epicentres of  Napoleon’s last battle and one of Europe’s most epic battles of history  it was ! I have always enjoyed  reading about Napoleon and this summer took out some time to read  “Waterloo – the last 100 days” from Flemish writer Johan Op De Beek. 

There is no denying that Napoleon remains an enigma –  to some he was a hero and to  others a tyrant.  Fact is that overall, history remains particularly kind to his achievements in contrast with so many autocratic leaders history has born.

Even Wellington who defeated Napoleon at Waterloo turned out to be one of Napoleon’s biggest admirers. He has been instrumental at stopping the Prussians of wanting to execute Napoleon upon his capture after Waterloo. Wellington is claimed to have said :” we cannot be associated with executing one of histories’ most extra ordinary leaders”.

Colossal Leader Continue reading

Get rid of the second TV’s in your organization !

How conflict avoidance creates complexity

Collaboration is becoming a rundown word. By now every manager read books about its importance and how to install it in it’s organisation. Yet, as organisations we have never been so unproductive and employees have never been so disengaged.

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This is the starting point of his must see TED talk of Yves Morieux (BCG). While I’m not sure that he comes with an easy to implement set of solutions (he calls it  “six ways to get people to solve problems with you“) , I do know that I have never heard such a brilliant analysis of the problem.

Companies, he says, organize their businesses around two management pillars : i) a hard approach around  structure, process , systems , metrics and ii) a soft approach around feeling, interpersonal, relationship, people traits and competences. These pillars however  taken alone or together are falling short of addressing the new exploding complexity.

Traditional collaboration

Intuitively we know that improving collaboration (he calls “interplay”) remains the proven driver for use of less resources and increased agility. However, a hard approach wants to work on collaboration by creating new boxes in the organisational skeleton – i.e. new functions (e.g. a role of “Mr Simplicity). This creates explosion of interfaces and coordination problems.

On the other hand, Continue reading

Teaching of self-awareness to young future business leaders – simple yet visionary idea

philippe_naert_276x160Teaching of self-awareness to young future business leaders – simple yet visionairy idea from Professor Naert (Dean of AMS)

At a recent Procter & Gamble Alumni event Professor Naert shared his vision on how to develop young talent. Professor Naert has been called a serial Dean with amongst other, being the Dean of INSEAD for 4 year. He has developed a unique business driven vision on what future leadership should aspire to and more importantly how it can be installed in young promising talent.

Professor Naert is now Dean of the Antwerp Management School (AMS). He shared the Mission (here below) of the full time executive management program that has been developed three years ago . Continue reading