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The Filament Blog


We all suffer from a profound case of “Idea Surplus Disorder” at Filament — and we think that’s a good thing. Here are some of those ideas we’d like to share with you.



Monday Morning Meeting #40

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Welcome back to Filament’s Monday Morning Meeting — your weekly mix of cool ideas and interesting links. Let’s get to work!


Please join us for our third birthday party from 3-7 pm on Friday, March 29th with some food, facilitation, fun, and cake! Here’s the link to sign up — and please bring a friend or business colleague.


If kindness feels so good, why does it seem so hard?

Because “real kindness is an exchange with essentially unpredictable consequences. It is a risk precisely because it mingles our needs and desires with the needs and desires of others, in a way that so-called self-interest never can.

This is one of the things we’re focused on this year at Filament: working “out loud” better.

When customers are separated from the people and the processes that create value for them, they come away feeling like less effort went into the service. They appreciate the service less and then the value the service less as well. So, there are opportunities I think for many businesses to think about how they can become more operationally transparent, opening up their operations so that customers can better see and understand the value they’re creating in their lives.

Chis Corrigan shares a great overview of the five types of problems in the Cynefin Framework and how he uses it to group challenges before tackling them. They are:

  • Obvious problems (knowable problems with predictable, simple solutions).

  • Complicated problems (knowable problems with predictable solutions, but only with expert help and analysis).

  • Complex problems (unknowable and ever changing problems that demand unpredictable but multiple emergent ways of addressing them).

  • Chaotic problems (unknowable and unpredictable problems and there is not enough time to think about a solution).

  • Disordered problems (where you don’t know what kind of problem you have). 

Who knew this is how to eat a pineapple?

Want to tell a better story? Here are the five steps.

Great advice for managers:

Focus on your team/company output first and your personal productivity second. So many focus on the latter (me included) while the former has 10x leverage and impact. Getting your team to row in the same direction is more important that optimizing for how fast you can row.

Finally, if your first instinct when you’re late is to apologize, print out this chart for some more positive alternatives to the automatic apology. For example, replace “I’m sorry, I’m always late” with “Thank you for waiting for me” and “I’m sorry you have to help me” with “Thank you for doing me a favor.”


"A lesson will be repeated until it is learned.” — Ancient Sanskrit Wisdom

“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” — Wayne Dyer

“Never believe that a few caring people can't change the world. For, indeed, that's all who ever have.” — Margaret Mead