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Dell and The Business Experiment

I got an email today from Robert May of Business Pundit. He is creating a new site that is called As you might expect, it is an experiment. Here’s how he describes it:

The Business Experiment is a site meant to explore three concepts: wisdom of crowds, open-source business, and the distributed nature of work. The goal is to have the registered users of this site collectively start and run a real business.

Interesting huh? Now for something a little different…

Jeff Jarvis has been talking about the cluelessness of Dell for a while now. Here’s a link to all his related posts. Others like Christopher Carfi, Steve Broback and many others followed with more negative info. Dell is being publicly vilified among people with real power to influence buying decisions and doing nothing about it.

I pointed to these two examples because of the dichotomy. Robert is experimenting with building a business based on the decisions of many disparate people who have a passion (and the power) to contribute meaningfully. Not only is he enabling listening, but empowering people to make business decisions as a group.

Meanwhile, Dell is resistant react-to or recognize the input from groups of people who are publicly begging for their attention. These people want to help improve Dell and want to he heard. Yet, it won’t happen.

I find this interesting because it’s another example of disruption. It is an example of what’s coming for many businesses. In the future, companies will come to recognize the value of the customers voice, even to help guide business decisions.

It may be too late for Dell to be that kind of company, but someday their biggest competition may be a company built using the power of many customer voices to influence the business, perhaps even something from The Business Experiment.