Architectures of Control: How Design Influences the Ways We Use and Do Things

Just stumbled across a REALLY interesting blog called The Architectures of Control. It's maintained by Dan Lockton who says: Increasingly, many products are being designed with features that intentionally restrict the way the user can behave, or enforce certain modes of behaviour. The same intentions are also evident in the design of many systems and environments. Dan goes on to define architectures of control this way: Architectures of control are... Read more →

We Need More Beginnings

Rosetta Thurman of Perspectives from the Pipeline points us to a most excellent post--Are You Ending or Beginning? In it, Hildy Gottlieb asks us to stop trying to end things and start focusing on beginning something amazing. She points out that for 40 years we've been had "wars" on poverty, hunger, homelessness--you name it, we've been fighting it. Yet little seems to have changed: And the reason we feel like... Read more →

The Power (and Pain) of Self-Fulfilling Prophecies

Fast Company has an interesting article in their May 2007 issue (sorry--not available online at this point) by Chip and Dan Heath of Made to Stick fame on the power of self-fulfilling prophesies. Entitled "Success Can Make You Stupid," the Heath brothers write about how Hollywood pumps out bad films because they get into a cycle of self-fulfilling prophecies. What caught my eye, though, was this gem of a quote:... Read more →

Guest Blogging on Scarcity and Abundance at Dollar Philanthropy

Last month, I blogtipped Carol Kirshner of Dollar Philanthropy and made the "mistake" of telling her that I liked her Guest Blogger feature. A few weeks later, after I began my journey into scarcity and abundance, she emailed me and asked if I'd be willing to do a guest post for her on the topic. I was incredibly flattered, but in the middle of some major work stuff, so it... Read more →

Can Limitations Actually Free Your Organization?

Lately I've been writing about the issue of scarcity thinking in nonprofits and how a focus on limitations and barriers seems to hold back many organizations. Now I see that Garr Reynolds of Presentation Zen has written an excellent post on the value of limitations that I think is very applicable to nonprofits. In it, Garr argues that the rest of us have a thing or two to learn about... Read more →

Another Thought on Entitlement, Scarcity and New Media

As I browsed my feed reader this morning, with thoughts of scarcity and entitlement in my head, I came across Steve Bridger's post with a link to an article in the Nonprofit Times regarding the use of blogs with donors. What suddenly occurred to me was that to the extent that nonprofits seem willing to consider the use of social media (blogs, podcasts, YouTube, Flickr, MySpace, etc.), it is primarily... Read more →

Scarcity, Abundance, Mental Models and Reader Responses

In the past several days I've received a number of comments and emails on my posts regarding scarcity thinking in nonprofits. I wanted to try to summarize some of what's come my way because I think that it all furthers the conversation. In a comment on my original post, Mike Wassenaar left me a link to an interesting 2003 report entitled Battered Agencies: Supporting Those Who Serve Low Income Communities.... Read more →

Move out of Scarcity Thinking By Embracing Your Mistakes

Continuing on my abundance vs. scarcity thread, in a post a few days ago I quoted from Chief Happiness Officer, Alexander Kjerulf, who notes that scarcity thinkers have little tolerance for mistakes, while the abundance mentality embraces mistakes for the learning that they bring. Reader Marie notes in comments that most people she knows are deathly afraid of making mistakes and that it's particularly true the higher up the ladder... Read more →

One Way to Move to Abundance Thinking:Focus On What You Can Give

Lately I've been reflecting on ways that organizations can move from scarcity to abundance thinking. Seth Godin has one idea based on his father's 50 years of consistent business success: I was thinking about the way my Dad does business the other day. He's been a successful executive (and then entrepreneur) for more than 50 years. I realized that I can't remember one time when he did this to get... Read more →

More on Scarcity vs. Abundance Thinking

In between a grant proposal and a website I'm working on for a client, I've been continuing to think about the issue of scarcity thinking in nonprofits that I started on yesterday as I read what others have to say on the subject. Allen points out that scarcity thinking is the enemy of change management everywhere, not just in relation to IT projects or nonprofits and I completely agree. He... Read more →