The Glass Organization

Who does not love snow globes? You shake them and have complete control of the world in the palm of your hand. My daughter has a globe her grandmother bought her at a museum in Oklahoma that when shaken scatters sand and creates a mini-tornado. During the holidays, I am captivated by the snow globes department stores put on display. I imagine who lives in that tiny, little world. What happened if I were in the snow globe?

And then I realize, I am in that tiny, little world.

Exposed for all to see, our lives lived out on social media and reality television, we have brought the transparent, bubble world of a snow globe to life. The days of Big Brother fandom are back. Or at least that is what ABC hopes with the premiere of the summer reality show, The Glass House. You may not be bored enough to have watched the show, but the title of the show explains it all. Fourteen contestants live in a transparent space with no secrets, shame or fear. Viewers control the challenges and enjoy the control of pushing people out of their comfort zone and decides who is to be eliminated.

The community of viewers are shaking things up and they are expecting this same insight into organizations as they do their prime time television. We can debate the actual reality of reality television at another time and place because what is most important now is the perception of openness. Conversations are jumping across social media channels like wild fire. People want to have tough and sticky conversations in public places like Twitter and Facebook because that is their preferred method of communication. As organizations, we need to understand the ramifications of these mentions, know how we will respond internally and externally, and set expectations for future engagement.

When you shake a snow globe, the water does not escape from the confines of the glass bubble or solid base. This world, this community, in the palm of your hand has structure. The snow particles will never fall in the same place more than once or fall outside the container unless you become distracted and the globe becomes a victim of gravity.

So, what are you waiting for? Shake things up. Open your organization to the communities you serve. Just ensure you have a solid structure and focused team.

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