Crowdsourcing, Another Word for Managing by Committee?

By John McTigueSep 24 /2009

I found this great video by Marty Clarke from a couple of years ago, and I wanted to share it first, then throw in my 2 cents. The basic premise, managing by committee sucks. Nothing gets accomplished. You want to make progress, be a leader and make the decision yourself.

I'm going to roll this ahead to current day and talk about "crowdsourcing". That's the new buzz word for focus groups, design by the public, and yes, managing by committee. The key point of the video is that it's fine to collect everybody's opinion or create a poll, but the decision needs to be made by the senior stakeholder and no one else. There is only one "say" in the decision and that's the boss' say. Without this, there is anarchy and indecision. Not that I admire dictators, but you have to admit, they get the job done. Crowdsourcing is great for collecting data, but it's no substitute for leadership.

So when you're sitting down with your team and going around the room, listen to their advice, but don't tip your hand. They will be more likely to give it to you straight if they know it's up to you to decide. Thank them for their opinions and usher them out of the room. They can wait for you to decide.

The Author

John McTigue

With over 30 years of business and marketing experience, John loves to blog about ideas and trends that challenge inbound marketers and sales and marketing executives. John has a unique way of blending truth with sarcasm and passion with wit. You can connect with John via LinkedIn and Twitter.