This post is part of the Miscellaneous Links series

Interesting Links #1

Yak Collective Projects

Yak Collective is a loose organization of independent consultants who collaborate on a variety of projects. I've recently revisited two pieces from some of their earlier public output, and found them to be insightful:

Don’t Waste the Reboot

As self-described: "The inaugural report by the Yak Collective, Don’t Waste the Reboot offers organizations a smorgasbord of 25 creative and unexpected provocations, ideas, and action frameworks to navigate the COVID-19 crisis."

The project is presented as a carefully designed slideshow, and while its target audience is indie consultants, there are lots of lessons in it to consider as a small business entrepreneur or local leader. I recommend skimming for the sections that seem most relevant.

Some highlights:

Slide 3: Citing the book The Living Company, the report discusses 8 factors driving longterm company survival.

Slide 21: Suggests paying attention to experimentation on the cultural fringe as free R&D. As an example, notes how GoFundMe, "noticing that many people were actively being creative in ways to support small businesses,...leveraged its established platform to launch a landing page highighting small businesses..." (Relatedly, April Underwood benefitted from the focal point that the pandemic put on local business survival while fundraising for a new startup, Nearby, which allows small local businesses to offer the same sort of online shopping and speedy delivery options that Amazon does.)

Slide 44: Reminds us that our existing institutions, systems, and norms are breaking down. We need to be able to embrace rapid change caused by the need for things like maintaining social distancing, curbing misinformation, increased demand for work from home options, changes in the job market, combatting climate change and pollution, etc.

Slide 51: Reminds us of the importance of an outside view, whether it's a consultant, an anthropologist, or a neighbor/new community member. If you have a problem, it may help to discuss with others, especially outside of your normal circles.

P.S. With all this talk of consulting, a brief reminder: Never hire McKinsey! (Or Bain, BCG, Deloitte, etc.)

The New Old Home


Designing a New Old Home