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New Frontiers in Business Intelligence

Nari Kannan

How most companies end up like the one in Office Space

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If you have a job in an office currently, or if you have ever held one, you should watch the movie Office Space at your earliest opportunity. It depicts corporate stupidity in very funny ways.

This week, I read the book "The Cure for Corporate Stupidity" by Larry J. Bloom. It's one of the best books I have read recently.



Larry Bloom's claim is that corporations make stupid decisions and become stupid. He attributes this to a number of "mind bugs" that make them do stupid things. 

I was with a company, Digital Equipment Corporation, in 1986 when it made many of the dumb decisions that Larry is talking about. Consequently, it did not do so well; it was bought and absorbed by Compaq, which was then bought by HP. The biggest mind bug that DEC had was thinking that mini-computers were there to stay and the company didn't have to worry about Sun and its even less expensive UNIX workstations. Ironically, Sun had the same mind bug--that they did not have to worry about PC-based servers from Dell and HP--and now they are part of Oracle.

Larry identifies different kinds of mind bugs, such as: the Sufficiency one (assuming that some people or information are sufficient to make the right decisions), the Accuracy one (assuming that information or people are accurate), the Beliefs one (wrong beliefs), and the Social One (involving decisions imposed by social structure within the company).  He then prescribes a number of steps to avoid these mind bugs and make the right decision.

Great book with some great information! Now the only mind bug any corporation needs to avoid is thinking that this advice does not apply to them.

I never apologize.
I'm sorry, but that's just the way I am.

Nari Kannan's blog explores how new approaches to business intelligence can help organizations improve the performance of business processes--whether these processes are creative or operational, internally-focused or customer-facing, intra-departmental or across functions.

Nari Kannan

Nari Kannan started and serves as the CEO of appsparq, a Mobile Applications development company based in Louisville, KY with offices in Singapore and India. Nari has over two decades of experience in computer systems development, translating product and service strategy into meaningful technology solutions, and both people and product development. Prior to this, he has served as both Chief Technology Officer and Vice President- Engineering in six successful startups, two of which he co-founded. He has proven experience in building companies, engineering teams, and software solutions from scratch in the United States and India. Prior to this, Nari started Ajira Technologies, Inc., in Pleasanton, CA, where he served as Chief Executive Officer for more than six years. While at Ajira, Nari was instrumental in developing service process management solutions that modeled, monitored, and analyzed business processes, initially targeting the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), Telecom, and Banking verticals in India, and Finance, Insurance, and Healthcare verticals in the United States. Prior to this, he served as VP-Engineering at Ensenda, an ASP for local delivery services. He also served variously as Chief Technology Officer or VP-Engineering at other Bay-Area venture funded startups such as Kadiri and Ensera. He began his career at Digital Equipment Corporation as a Senior Software Engineer. Nari has a long involvement with Customer Support and other customer facing processes. At Digital Equipment Corporation he was involved with their 1800 person customer support center in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He was tasked with coming up with innovative tools to help customer support people do their jobs better. He holds a U.S patent for a software invention that automatically redirected email requests for customer support to the right group by digesting the contents of the request and guessing at which software or hardware support group is best equipped to handle it. At Ensera, he led a 45 person team in developing an internet based ASP service for handling auto insurance claims, coordinating information flow between end-customers, Insurance companies, Repair shops and Parts suppliers. Ensera was acquired by Mitchell Corporation in San Diego. Nari holds a B.S. degree in Physics from Loyola College, and an M.B.A degree from the University of Madras in Madras, India. He graduated with a M.S. degree in Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1985. Contact Information: Nari Kannan. Email: nari@appsparq.com Mobile: 925 353 0197. Website: www.appsparq.com View more .


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