Karaoke Capitalism is a hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxies of commerce. It is a book about people – management for mankind – the individuals prepared to grasp the microphone and express themselves. You have the rights. Now, you must learn to live them.
The karaoke reality is a cosmopolitan club with endless individual choice but also a paltry place for institutionalized imitation. The dirty little secret of management theory and practice is that business schools, benchmarking and best practice have transformed the entire world of commerce into a super-group of karaoke copying companies. And imitating someone else will never get you to the top – merely to the middle.
Our societies are shaped by the glorious trio of technologies, institutions and values. Changes have now made abnormal the new normal. The bubble economy has given way to the double economy. Forget about appealing to the average. Success is a question of exploring the extremes.
Corporations are no longer in control. The karaoke version of capitalism brings us the promised land of competent people and customers. Modern companies are facing the prospects of a two-front war: held hostage by talent and under siege by consumers. To thrive, organizations must learn to master the arts of capitalizing on competencies and customer creation.
The winners know that wealth is created with wisdom, but to remain competitive they are forced to create knowledge networks that pose new and fundamentally different demands on the organization. Innovation Inc. lets go of hierarchy and brings into play the Lego principles.
In a world of economic Darwinism, survival is a question of being fit or sexy – competing on models and moods. Fitness boils down to using market imperfections to your advantage. Masters of mood exploit the imperfections of man by seducing or sedating consumer. Excellent companies re-invent innovation and re-energize the corporation.
To develop the character of capitalism we have to accept individual responsibility. Look inside. Do you want to be a first-rate version of yourself or a second-rate version of someone else?