The year was 2006, and the trend formerly know as Web 2.0 was in full steam. A group of brilliant folks decided to organize the first edition of Shift Conference in Portugal. I managed to find some free time and attended one of the workshops, on the theme of “Creativity” with Dannie Jost and Henriette Weber Andersen. Two years later, Henriette has really pushed the envelope further, both professionally and personally, with her latest achievement in the form of a free eBook: Why every company should be a rockband.
While working for companies with start ups and online marketing and PR, she also helped bring passion to the communities she’s involved, and continued her involvement with Shift as a Super Duper Advisor :).
Photo by redsoda747, all rights reserved
Unfortunately, i wasn’t able to attend the talk where Henriette presented the ideas on the book, but as a big fan of her personal rockband, i’ve asked her a few questions she kindly accepted to answer.
Henriette, Toothless Tiger, avant garde social business expert: who are you really ?
Who am I really ? I am a lady from the north hunting integrity, authenticity, remarkability, creativity, and trustworthiness in business all over the world. I am a first mover within tech and business and how to implement the ways and ideas of the internet in organizations. Heck some people even call me a guru =)
At Shift, we had a first glimpse on “why every company should be a rockband”, that has now been self published as a book. Sounds like there’s a story here, and i’d love you to share how this book was born and the main ideas discussed on it.
Well the book was born because my own book deal in Denmark got canceled. it’s not that I cry myself to sleep every night over it, it just shows that when you’re battling in places where i am battling – the publishing industry does not understand. I have felt it on my own body that publishing houses wants to make everything mainstream. I think mainstream is so incredibly boring and without attitude. It makes everything become normal. meh. Anyway I decided to make my own publishing house (called Toothless Tiger Press), where nothing had to be mainstream – it could be as quirky and strange and wonderful excentric, and all the power over the works had to be in the hands of the author. To make Toothless Tiger Press I needed to have an ebook. People at shift really loved the talk so I decided to work a bit longer on the slides and turn them into an ebook. It collided with my blog post on the 7th of December on 24ways.org – it was a blast and now it’s out there and people are sending me mails to say thank you – it rocks =).
The main idea in the ebook is that the world has changed and it doesn’t look a bit like “business as usual”. Still we conduct business as usual. s. It heavily related on some blogposts I have done on toothlesstiger.com for the past year arguing that “the business of business needs to be more than business”. and that’s the main idea. It’s a way of changing the world. which is also why I hope that everybody will read this ebook and react on it, and spread the ebook like wildfire – in some way – making something more.
Bands have groupies. Companies have …
groupies too and fans. Groupies are the hardcore people surrounding your company and who can’t live without it. Fans are more moderate. You need to work on getting people who purchase your products to first become customers, then to become fans, and if you’re lucky they will become groupies as well.
We’re both very interested in creativity. Bands have it, the web as lots of it, but companies are usually stifling it. Are companies behaving like the music industry instead of focusing in being rock bands?
I think that the creativity is lacking in companies because of control. In some companies it’s extremely hard and I think that some companies are acting as the music industry. let it go man. You can’t control the chaos of the web. it should not be managed – it should be lead. so let go of the command and control mentality, it doesn’t really belong in a rockband (or in the music industry – but I guess they are waking up to see that)
Game time. Match each one of the brands / companies below with a rock band.
(I haven’t given these much consideration so I hope I won’t be held responsible that much)
Nokia : R.E.M
Adidas: Daft Punk
Ford: Sisters of Mercy
PriceWaterhouse: The Pogues
Accenture: The Corrs
Ben&Jerry’s: spice girls
Pepsi: The Doors
Coke: Janis Joplin
Google: Red Hot Chili Peppers
Zara: Manu Chao
Head on to Toothlesstigerpress.com and get your piece of a rockband for your company today.
Added links to the original concept and the talk’s slideshow.